Vanessa DiBernardo leads the Illini with five goals and 11 points through six games.
Sept. 13, 2010
PARK RIDGE, Ill. - Illini women's soccer freshman midfielder Vanessa DiBernardo earned Co-Offensive and Freshman Player of the Week honors from the Big Ten Conference on Monday. DiBernardo notched two goals during Illinois' shutout victory, 3-0, over Cincinnati.
Against Cincinnati, DiBernardo broke the scoreless tie in the 24th minute. Controlling a pass from teammate Niki Read on the right side of the box, DiBernardo fired a shot into the upper-left corner of the net to put Illinois up, 1-0. The Naperville, Ill., native followed with her second goal of the contest 15 minutes later, marking her first multi-goal collegiate performance. DiBernardo controlled a loose ball in the Cincinnati box before pushing a shot past the Bearcats' keeper to double the Illini lead.
The Freshman Player of the Week honor is the second of the year for DiBernardo as she earned the same award on Aug. 30 for her performances against Ball State and Wright State. Sharing the award with Caitlyn Martin of Ohio State, the Co-Offensive Player of the Week honor marks the first of DiBernardo's career and the first for an Illini since Ella Masar earned the award on Oct. 29, 2007.
DiBernardo now leads the Illini in goals (5), points (11), shots (21) and shots on goal (10). Among Big Ten opponents, DiBernardo ranks first in goals and points as well as goals per game (0.83) and points per game (1.83).
The Orange and Blue return to action at Illinois Soccer Stadium for contests against LSU at 7 p.m. on Sept. 17 and Louisville at 1 p.m. on Sept. 19.