League taking notice

As the men’s soccer team continues its great start to the 2004 season, people around the league are starting to take notice.

USF goalkeeper Dane Brenner was awarded C-USA Defensive Player of the Week for the second straight week. Over the weekend, he extended his shutout streak to four games and hasn’t yielded a goal in 380 minutes. Brenner now has posted a microscopic 0.39 goals against average, with 18 saves on 46 shots faced.

“It’s nice that the guys are getting recognized for their accomplishments,” Kiefer said. “But as far as Dane’s award goes, I think that is something the whole team should be proud of. A team defense really helps.”

Junior captain Hunter West was awarded C-USA Co-Offensive Player of the Week. West was also named to the College Soccer News National Team of the Week.

He was the only C-USA player to get both honors.

West scored two game-winning goals in the USF Holiday Inn Invitational over the weekend.

Cross country finishes third

The USF women’s cross country team placed third overall at the University of Florida Invitational on Saturday in Gainesville.

The USF men finished eighth and the University of Georgia took first in both the male and female competitions.

“We were pleased with the result,” coach Greg Thiel said. “Right now, we’re just trying to get them to run as a team. It’s what we’re striving for.”

For the women, senior Christa Benton had the fastest time for the Bulls, finishing in 17:58.44 for sixth-place overall. Teammates Jessica Hellender and Bente General finished ninth and 12th, respectively.

“Right now (Benton) is our No. 1 runner,” Thiel said. “She just comes and is always really fit at the beginning of the year.”

Leading USF on the men’s side was freshman Brandon Dahlam, who clocked in at 27:12.44 for 39th in the 8K event.

Men’s tennis opens season

The USF men’s tennis team had a solid showing at the Gator Invitational this weekend in Gainesville.

Florida, Miami and Southern Miss also competed in the three-day event.

On Friday against Miami, the Bulls split six singles matches and dropped two of three doubles matches.

In the No. 2 singles match, Andreas Maroldt defeated Miami’s No. 78 Eric Hetchman 3-6, 6-2, 6-4. Freshmen Juan Carlos Gomez and Mark Gattiker also won singles matches.

On Saturday against Southern Miss, USF split two doubles matches and took two of five singles matches, with Gomez and Matios Sigal victorious.

Versus host Florida on Sunday, the Bulls dropped a staggering eight of nine matches. The lone bright spot was the No. 1 doubles duo of Federico Barton and Dillon Drozyna, who defeated No. 21 Chris Brandi and Nestor Briceno 8-3.

“We had a good showing,” coach Don Barr said. “The experience our young guys got is invaluable because Florida is a national title-caliber team.”

Compiled by Mike Camunas and John Calkins.