For the second time in the last month, Christina Bragado and Allison Leone have been named the C-USA Defensive Player of the Week and Goalkeeper of the Week, respectively, as announced by the conference office on Monday afternoon.
The honor is Bragado’s second career nod from the conference, while Leone is now WKU’s all-time record holder for weekly awards, notching her second of the season and fourth of her career with the accolades.
WKU (5-8-1, 2-4-1 C-USA) put together a 2-0 record over the weekend with shutout victories over both Florida Atlantic on Friday evening (1-0) and FIU on Sunday afternoon (2-0) at the WKU Soccer Complex. With the pair of wins, the Lady Toppers are now just three points out of a conference tournament spot with three matches to play.
Acting as the anchor of the back line at center back as she has all season, Bragado held the Owls and Panthers to only four combined shots on goal across 180 minutes of action. The sophomore and the Lady Topper defense shined in the second half on Sunday afternoon as gusty winds struck the Soccer Complex, making defending unpredictable. Despite the adverse conditions, WKU allowed just two shots over the final 45 minutes to complete the shutout against FIU.
In goal, Leone collected her fourth and fifth solo shutouts of the season, mark that ranks second among all C-USA goalkeepers in 2017. The senior made timely saves throughout the weekend to keep WKU’s opponents off the board, including a stop against Florida Atlantic just after Tally Bishop’s match-winner on Friday and saves on either side of the halftime break on Sunday against FIU. With three saves on Sunday, Leone is now just 14 shy of reaching 300 stops for her career.
Under Bragado and Leone, the WKU defense has held its opponents scoreless for the last 252 consecutive minutes dating back to the Middle Tennessee match on Oct. 6. The Lady Toppers have allowed just 12 goals in 13 matches this season and have surrendered more than a single goal on just three occasions; only North Texas (9) has allowed fewer goals this season among C-USA members.
Bragado, Leone and the Lady Toppers will return to action on Thursday evening at 7 p.m. as WKU travels west to take on UTSA. The Lady Toppers own a perfect 3-0 mark in the all-time series against the Roadrunners, including a 2-0 win in Bowling Green last season.
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Currie P. McFayden
WKU Associate Director of Athletic Communications