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Oct. 24, 2011
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - Penn State women's soccer sophomore Maya Hayes (West Orange, N.J.) was tabbed Big Ten Offensive Player of the Week on Monday for her stellar play in wins over Michigan State and Michigan this past weekend.
Hayes won her fourth Big Ten weekly honor of the year with a four-goal weekend pushing Penn State (16-3-0, 9-1-0 Big Ten) to a conference title for the 14th straight year. The Nittany Lion striker leads the NCAA in goals (25) and points (57), while climbing the record charts in Penn State history.
Hayes is riding a six-game scoring streak and is tied for fourth in single-season goals with Christie Welsh (2001), while one off Tiffany Weimer's mark of 26 set in 2004. Hayes already set the Penn State sophomore records for goals, points and game-winners, adding distance to her lead in those categories.
The sophomore out of New Jersey was also named to TopDrawerSoccer.com's National Team of the Week for the fourth time in 2011 as well as for the second straight week. The odds-on favorite to win the Big Ten's Offensive Player of the Year award, Hayes scored the game-tying and game-winning goals at Michigan State on Friday in a 3-1 victory that put PSU on the cusp of a championship. Two days later, Hayes and company stomped Michigan, 4-0, as Hayes scored the second and third goals in the victory.
If Hayes scores in Friday's regular season finale against Purdue, it'll mark her second seven-game scoring streak in 2011. The only other Nittany Lion to pull that feat was Weimer who holds the top mark with streaks of 17 (2005) and 13 (2004).
Penn State has won each of the past three Offensive Player of the Week awards and four of the past five. Hayes won each two of those awards, while Taylor Schram (Canonsburg, Pa.) and Ali Schaefer (Las Vegas, Nev.) have earned recognition this season. Freshmen Kori Chapic (Novelty, Ohio) and Emily Hurd (Sammamish, Wash.) each earned Freshman of the Week honors during Big Ten play as well.
Penn State is currently in the midst of a 10-game winning streak, the longest since a 19-game stretch in 2005 when the Nittany Lions went undefeated (23-0-2) and reached the College Cup. PSU has locked up the No. 1 seed in the Big Ten Tournament at Northwester, where they will face the Wildcats who earn automatic entry.
Before the Big Ten Tournament, Penn State squares off against Purdue at 7:00 p.m. on Friday at Jeffrey Field. The game will celebrate Senior Night for Penn State's graduating student-athletes, while also serving as a celebration of the 2011 regular season Big Ten title. Fans who attend are encouraged to participate in a halftime Halloween Costume Contest and sit in the East Stands closest to Beaver Stadium, as the Big Ten Network will televise the match.
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