Consistency, longevity and a solid defense in front of you — those are all ingredients that help make a successful goalkeeper, and Akron senior David Meves possesses all of them.
Last week, Meves became the NCAA men’s soccer all-time shutouts leader following the Zips’ 1-0 win against Michigan State on Wednesday. On Saturday, he added another shutout with a 1-0 blanking of Western Michigan and currently has 52 in his career. Meves eclipsed the mark held by Connecticut’s Josh Ford, who posted 50 clean sheets in 85 games from 2007-10.
A native of Arlington Heights, Ill., Meves has been the Zips’ starting goalkeeper since his freshman season in 2009, compiling a 74-7-9 all-time record. Meves set the school record for shutouts in a single season with 17. He has led the Zips to the NCAA championship game twice, and helped Akron capture its first team national championship in any sport in 2010.
This season, the Zips have allowed just six goals in 18 matches — and three of those were in the Notre Dame game. Since Sept. 14, Akron has outscored foes 29-1 and heads into the postseason with a 0.33 goals against average.
“It’s an incredible achievement to be the NCAA’s shutout leader,” Akron head coach Caleb Porter said. “I think he would be the first to admit a lot of the credit has to go to the team. When you’re a goalkeeper, you’re only as good as the defenders in front of you and he’s had a lot of quality players in front of him who help him. But, this year, he’s been fantastic. He’s been called upon to make some saves this year and he has come up big in every single game.”
Meves has spent every minute of all 18 matches in goal for the Zips, posting 14 shutouts, including a run of eight consecutive shutouts from Sept. 14 to Oct. 16 and a span of 713 scoreless minutes, while leading Akron to their eighth consecutive Mid-American Conference regular season title.
“I think the record is good but we have a long way to go to accomplish our big goal of winning a national championship this year,” Meves said. “In the end, that’s our main focus.”
Akron, the host and top seed of the MAC Tournament, begins its postseason journey with a semifinal match against fourth-seeded Bowling Green on Friday.
• The eighth-ranked Virginia women’s soccer team downed its fifth consecutive ranked opponent with a convincing 4-0 victory against No. 7 Maryland to win the Atlantic Coast Conference championship on Sunday. It is Virginia’s second ACC title, and first since 2004. The Cavaliers have outscored foes 19-3 during the five-game stretch.
Sophomore Morgan Brian, who entered the ACC Tournament with no goals and three assists during the regular season, tallied three goals and three assists during UVa’s championship run to earn tournament most valuable player honors.
• In Division II football, No. 5 Ashland clinched its first Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference crown after defeating Tiffin 49-21 on Saturday and improving to 10-0. The Eagles are one game within completing the regular season unbeaten, something Ashland has not accomplished since the 1972 season. AU’s final regular-season game is next Saturday aginst Notre Dame (Ohio). Senior quarterback Taylor Housewright has passed for 27 touchdowns this year — the second-high total in school history.
|Aug. 24||vs. Saint Mary’s||W, 3-0|
|Aug. 25||vs. Albany||W, 3-0|
|Aug. 26||at Hawaii||L, 3-1|
|Aug. 31||at Penn State||L, 3-2|
|Sept. 1||vs. Florida||W, 3-1|
|Sept. 5||vs. Jiangsu||L, 3-0|
|Sept. 7||vs. Santa Clara||W, 3-0|
|Sept. 8||vs. Loyola||W, 3-1|
|vs. Pacific||W, 3-0|
|Sept. 14||vs. San Francisco||W, 3-0|
|Sept. 15||at Saint Mary’s||W, 3-1|
|Sept. 19||vs. California *||W, 3-0|
|Sept. 21||at Utah *||W, 3-1|
|Sept. 28||at Arizona *||W, 3-1|
|Sept. 30||at Arizona State *||W, 3-1|
|Oct. 5||vs. Oregon *||W, 3-2|
|Oct. 7||vs. Oregon State *||W, 3-0|
|Oct. 10||vs. USC *||W, 3-0|
|Oct. 12||vs. UCLA *||W, 3-2|
|Oct. 19||at Washington *||W, 3-2|
|Oct. 21||at Washington State *||W, 3-2|
|Oct. 24||vs. Arizona *||W, 3-0|
|Oct. 26||vs. Arizona State *||W, 3-1|
|Nov. 2||at Oregon State *||W, 3-0|
|Nov. 4||at Oregon *||W, 3-0|
|Nov. 7||vs. Washington State|
|Nov. 8||vs. Washington *|
|Nov. 15||at USC *|
|Nov. 16||at UCLA *|
|Nov. 21||vs. Colorado *|
|Nov. 23||at California *|
|* denotes Pac-12 match|
• The top-ranked Stanford women’s volleyball squad continued its winning ways on a road trip to Oregon last weekend. First, the Cardinal swept Oregon State on Friday, and then headed to No. 2 Oregon. Stanford outhit the Ducks .344 to .188 as the Cardinal stretched its winning streak to 20 matches and remained perfect in Pac-12 play. The Cardinal’s winning streak is their longest since 1999 and longest under head coach John Dunning.
• Former co-workers Simon Riddiough and Lindsey Vanderspiegel each led their respective teams to conference titles and DI Women’s Soccer Championship bids on Sunday as Hofstra claimed the Colonial Athletic Association trophy and Georgia Southern nabbed the Southern Conference crown on Sunday.
Vanderspiegel, the GSU head coach, served as an assistant under Riddiough, the Hofstra head coach, for four seasons. Vanderspiegel is in her second year as the Eagles’ head coach. The pair led the Pride to two NCAA Tournament appearances during their tenure together.
Both Hofstra and GSU were underdogs in their tournaments. Hofstra entered the CAA Tournament as the No. 5 seed, while Georgia Southern was the No. 8 seed in the SoCon. Both squads also had to go to penalty kicks during their title run — Hofstra advanced in the quarterfinals and semifinals after penalty kicks, while Georgia Southern topped Furman in penalty kicks in the championship final. The Eagles became the first eighth-seeded team to reach the SoCon Tournament championship game in league history.
• The Connecticut field hockey team avenged a regular season loss to Syracuse with a 4-3 win in Sunday’s Big East championship game, claiming its first title since 2009. Sophomore Chloe Hunnable netted the game-winning goal for the Huskies with 16.2 seconds remaining in the game with an assist coming from the league’s offensive player of the year Marie Elena Bolles. The Huskies scored three unanswered goals in the comeback victory.
• It took four quarters and four overtimes, but senior kicker Luke Heinsohn nailed a 37-yard field goal to lift Washington and Lee to a 45-42 victory against Hampden Sydney in DII football on Saturday. Heinsohn also rushed for 192 yards and four touchdowns in the contest.
The win, coupled with Bridgewater’s loss to Randolph-Macon, gave the Generals their second Old Dominion Athletic Conference Championship in the past three years. The Generals are one of 13 programs that have secured an automatic berth in the DIII playoffs.
• The top-ranked Regis men’s soccer team suffered its first loss of the season on Sunday, falling to No. 23 Colorado School of Mines 4-3 in the Rocky Mountain Athletic championship game. The setback ended the Rangers’ 15-game winning streak and gave the Orediggers their first RMAC title since 2010. RMAC Offensive Player of the Year Tesho Akindele netted the first goal of the game, improving his school single-season goal total of 21 and garnering tournament MVP for his efforts. Regis was the last unbeaten team in DII men’s soccer.
• For the second year in a row, Appalachian State knocked off a top-ranked Georgia Southern team, edging the Eagles 31-28 in a FCS football matchup on Saturday. Because of Wofford’s loss to Samford, the No. 14 Mountaineers now control their own destiny in the Southern Conference title race. They can clinch the title with a win against Furman next week. Georgia Southern, because of Wofford’s loss, claimed at least a share of the SoCon trophy after finishing 6-2 in league play.
|THE DIGIT||THE 4-1-1|
||The top-ranked Middlebury field hockey team won its first New England Small College Athletic Conference Championship since 2003 with a 3-2 shootout victory against Bowdoin on Sunday. At 17-0, the Panthers are the only remaining unbeaten team in Division III entering the postseason.|
|21||The No. 24 Wheaton football team’s 35-21 upset of No. 7 North Central on Saturday ended the Cardinals’ 21-game College Conference of Wisconsin and Illinois winning streak, and moved the Thunder into a three-way tie for first place in the Division III league. Wheaton can win at least a share of its first CCIW title since 2006 with a victory against North Park in the regular-season finale next Saturday.|
|49||Stony Brook senior running back Miguel Maysonet rushed for three touchdowns in the Seawolves’ 45-7 victory against VMI on Saturday, becoming the Big South Conference all-time leader in touchdowns with 49. With the win, Stony Brook clinched a share of the league football title and needs a victory against Liberty on Saturday to earn its second consecutive automatic bid to the FCS Playoffs.|
|50-50||Dayton senior Colleen Williams became the 20th player in NCAA women’s soccer history to score 50 goals and notch 50 assists as she contributed an assist in semifinals of the Atlantic 10 Conference against VCU on Friday. Williams, the A-19 Offensive Player of the Year, has 50 assists and 58 goals in her career, and has led the conference in scoring in each of the past three years.|
|541||Linfield quarterbacks Mickey Inns and Josh Yoder combined for a school-record 541 passing yards in the No. 4 Wildcats 47-7 drubbing of Puget Sound on Saturday in DIII football. Linfield remained unbeaten, improving to 8-0, and earning at least a share of its fourth consecutive Northwest Conference title. The Wildcats also secured an automatic berth in the NCAA playoffs.|
• After toppling Penn State two weeks ago, the No. 4 Nebraska women’s volleyball team suffered back-to-back conference losses for the first time since 2009 as the Huskers dropped a pair of five-set matches at Michigan and Michigan State during the weekend.
• The Marquette women’s soccer team captured its first Big East championship thanks to a goal by junior Taylor Madigan in the 87th minute that lifted the Golden Eagles to a 1-0 win against Georgetown.
• After a week of limited practice because of disruptions by Hurricane Sandy, Wagner perservered to notch a 30-0 win against Albany in an FCS contest on Satuday. The Seahawks improved their winning streak to six games — their longest since 1988 — and moved into first place in the league standings after handing the Great Danes their first loss in league play. Quarterback Nick Doscher has not thrown an interception since Wagner’s season opener and the Seahawks have not committed a turnover during their six-game winning streak.
• Sisters Lizzie and Maggie Kamp both garnered Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association volleyball honors after sparking Calvin to a perfect record in conference play and the league tournament title. Lizzie, a senior, led the MIAA in hitting percentage (.396) and kills per sest (4.78) in conference play and was named the league’s most valuable player. Maggie, who hit .259 with 2.79 kills per set, was chosen as the conference’s freshman of the year. The Knights also earned the MIAA’s automatic bid to the DIII Volleyball Championship.
• Check out this one. Bemidji State senior quarterback Lance Rongstad, who also starts for the men’s basketball team, ran for 78-yard touchdown in a 35-25 victory against Minnesota State-Moorhead on Saturday. Not only did Rongstad set the BSU record for the longest run by a quarterback, but he also leaps over a defender in the open field on his way to the end zone. … Maybe he should join the track team as a hurdler.
• It may be early in the wrestling season, but the action is already getting good. In the NWCA All-Star Classic on Saturday, there were 19 DI All-Americans and three NCAA champions in a star-studded night at American University’s Bender Arena, but the matchup between Cornell’s Kyle Dake and Penn State’s David Taylor at 165 pounds was definitely the most anticipated of the night.
Dake, a three-time NCAA champion, and Taylor, an NCAA champion, gave the sold out crowd a show, taking the match into overtime before a tie-breaker period and Dake’s eventual 2-1 victory. Dake is wrestling in his fourth weight class in as many years, and he is looking to be the only wrestler in history to win NCAA titles at four different weight classes.
• The No. 10 Midwestern State football team clinched a share of its third Lone Star conference title in the past four years by scoring two touchdowns in the final two minutes of a 52-48 victory against No. 12 West Texas A&M on Saturday in DII action. The Mustangs stretched their winning streak to eight games with the help of an 18-yard fumble return for a touchdown by Marqui Christian, who recovered the fumble on a muffed punt. The Buffs led 48-38 with 2:55 left in regulation.
• The Lynchburg women’s soccer team captured its third consecutive Old Dominion Athletic Conference title, and fifth in the last six seasons, with a 2-0 defeat of Bridgewater on Sunday. The Hornets improved to 19-0-3 and secured an automatic bid to the DIII championship. Lynchburg is one of just three unbeaten DIII women’s soccer teams remaining this season, and each will head to postseason play. Hardin-Simmons won the American Southwest Conference title, while Westfield State claimed the Massachusetts State Collegiate Athletic Conference championship.
Follow Amy Farnum on Twitter: @NCAA_Amy