Commentary

Lopez, Libke come through in the clutch

Updated: November 19, 2008, 9:21 AM ET
By Sheldon Shealer | ESPNRISE.com

The following are this week's ESPN RISE National Soccer Players of the Week. Players are recognized for their performances from the previous week (Monday through Sunday).

Boys player of the week
Joseph Lopez, Brentwood (N.Y.), Jr., F
The junior forward scored all four goals for Brentwood in state semifinal and final wins to cap a perfect season. Lopez ended the season with a school-record 25 goals. He helped the Indians to a 24-0 record while ensuring that they will be No. 1 in the final ESPN RISE FAB 50 national rankings for boys soccer teams that play in the fall.

Finalists
Cristian Alvarez, Merced (Calif.): Alvarez scored the lone goal as Merced stunned Davis to win the CIF Sac-Joaquin Division I title. Alvarez, a junior, will be one of the top returning players in California next fall.

Danny Sanchez, Las Vegas (Nev.): Sanchez scored two goals and assisted on a third as Las Vegas claimed its first state title with a 4-3 victory over Galena.

Past players of the week
Nov: 12: Alex Tarnoczi, Rock Canyon (Colo.)
Nov. 5: Kyle Schickel, St. Xavier (Ky.)
Oct. 29: Tyler Pollock, Beavercreek (Ohio)
Oct. 22: Jordan Cyrus, Norfolk Academy (Va.)
Oct. 15: Ryan Finley, Rancocas Valley (N.J.)
Oct. 8: Kyle Schraier, Christian Brothers (Mo.)
Oct. 1: Walter Rodriguez, St. Benedict's Prep (N.J.)
Sept. 24: Adam Jahn, Sacramento Jesuit (Calif.)
Sept. 17: Erik Hurtado, Westview (Ore.)
Sept. 10: Devon Sandoval, Eldorado (N.M.)
Sept. 3: Chris Perez, Gonzaga (D.C.)

Girls player of the week
Scout Libke, Lincoln (Ore.), Sr., F
Libke netted the game-winner in Lincoln's 1-0 victory over Westview in the Oregon Class 6A state final. Last year, Libke converted the decisive penalty kick in Lincoln's state title victory over Central Catholic.

Finalists
Murphy Greeley, Conestoga (Pa.): Greeley, one of two underclass starters in Conestoga's lineup, scored one goal and assisted on the other to help the team repeat as Class AAA state champions. The result secures a spot in the final Top 25 for Conestoga.

Ashley Luis, Casa Grande (Calif.): With a title in the balance, Luis delivered a memorable performance allowing Casa Grande to repeat as section champion. After holding Montgomery (Calif.) scoreless for 100 minutes, Luis saved a pair of penalty shoots in the PK stage to help her side to 4-1 shootout win over a fellow FAB 50-ranked opponent.

Past players of the week
Nov. 12: Elizabeth Burchenal, St. Ursula (Ohio)
Nov. 5: Jocelyn McCoy, Archbishop Spalding (Md.)
Oct. 29: Kealia Ohai, Alta (Utah)
Oct. 22: Ashley Szalwinski, Noblesville (Ind.)
Oct. 15: Melissa Madrid, Casa Grande (Calif.)
Oct. 8: Kaitlyn Kerr, Pennington Prep (N.J.)
Oct. 1: Taylor Davidson, Baylor School (Tenn.)
Sept. 24: Ashley Cuba, Cardinal Mooney (Ohio)
Sept. 17: Ashley Jones, Alta (Utah)
Sept. 10: Erin Simon, Pennington Prep (N.J.)
Sept. 3: Danielle Hubka, Strongsville (Ohio)

To nominate an athlete for player of the week consideration, e-mail Sheldon Shealer. Shealer is the soccer editor of ESPNRISE.com.