By Robert McKinney, Assistant Athletics Director, Communications
SALEM, Ore. -- Max Berner-Hays (Fr., D, Seattle, WA/Ballard HS) has been chosen as the Northwest Conference Men's Soccer Defensive Student-Athlete of the Week for his efforts in Willamette University's shutout wins over George Fox University on Saturday, Oct. 21 and Pacific University on Sunday, Oct. 22. In addition to excelling on defense, Berner-Hays scored all three goals as the Bearcats defeated George Fox, 2-0, and downed Pacific, 1-0 in overtime.
Overall, Berner-Hays played two great all-around games for Willamette. He was a key player on defense as the Bearcats limited GFU to seven total shots and one shot on goal, and then held Pacific to five total shots and four shots on goal. During the two games, Berner-Hays was dominant in the air, as he did not lose an aerial challenge to the other team even once.
Berner-Hays was a standout on offense in both games as well. He scored twice versus George Fox with a shot from the left side and on a header following a free kick. He put the game in the net against Pacific for the game's only goal with 31 seconds left in the first of a possible two 10-minute, sudden-death overtime periods. Berner-Hays scored the overtime goal on a 10-yard shot after a free kick by teammate Alan Hernandez (Sr., F, Tigard, OR/Tigard HS) was saved. Berner-Hays leads the Bearcats with five goals and 11 total points this season.
With the two wins over the weekend, Willamette remained in first place in the Northwest Conference standings and improved to 8-4-2 overall. In the NWC, the Bearcats are 8-1-2 for 26 points. Pacific Lutheran University is second at 7-2-2 (23 points) and Whitworth University holds third place at 6-4-1 (19 points). Willamette will play at Pacific Lutheran on Saturday, Oct. 28 at 2:30 p.m. (PDT), before taking on University of Puget Sound on Sunday, Oct. 29, also at 2:30 p.m. Both games will be played in Tacoma, Washington.