Valpo soccer junior goalkeeper Nikki Coryell (Aurora, Ill./Metea Valley) became the first player in Missouri Valley Conference history to be a three-time MVC Goalkeeper of the Year and the Beacons’ coaching staff — led by head coach John Marovich — was honored as the Valley’s Coaching Staff of the Year as the conference postseason awards were handed out Wednesday evening at the annual awards banquet, held this year in the Harre Union.
Coryell was one of four Beacons to earn a spot on the All-MVC First Team, joined by classmate Lindsey DuSatko (Plainfield, Ill./North), sophomore Addy Joiner (Chesterton, Ind./Chesterton) and senior Nicole Norfolk (Menomonee Falls, Wis./Divine Savior Holy Angels). Senior Allie Anderson (Wheaton, Ill./Wheaton Warrenville South [Xavier]) represented Valpo on the All-MVC Second Team and sophomore Abby White (Commerce Township, Mich./Walled Lake Central) picked up All-MVC Third Team honors. Molly O’Rear (Naperville, Ill./Naperville Central) rounded out the Beacons’ award recipients as she was an All-Freshman Team honoree.
Coryell enjoyed another standout season in goal for the Beacons, leading the conference in MVC-only play in both goals against average (0.50) and save percentage (.881). She posted five clean sheets in conference action and did not allow more than one goal in any of the 10 MVC fixtures. Overall this season, Coryell boasts an .800 save percentage, a 0.91 GAA and seven shutouts — tied for the sixth-most shutouts in a single season in program history. With 19 career clean sheets, Coryell is one shy of a tie for second in program history in the category and is tied for 10th in MVC history as well.
Coryell has been named the MVC Goalkeeper of the Year in each of her first three collegiate seasons to become the first three-time winner of the award in Valley history. She is the first MVC goalkeeper since Missouri State’s Jessica Teahan (2009-11) to earn three First Team All-MVC honors and is just the third player in Valpo soccer history to earn three First Team All-League awards, joining April Cronin and Lori Moore.
In her three Goalkeeper of the Year campaigns, Coryell has posted a cumulative GAA of 0.59 and a save percentage of .878 in conference play. In 26 MVC fixtures, she holds a 16-4-6 record and has recorded 14 shutouts, giving up one goal or fewer in 25 of those 26 matches.
DuSatko receives her second career All-MVC honor, earning a First Team spot this year after bringing in Second Team honors last season. The pacey forward was tied for second among Valley players with four assists in MVC-only play, picking up a helper apiece in four of Valpo’s regular season conference wins, and scored a goal as well. DuSatko assisted on the match-winning goal in the Beacons’ win at Murray State and scored the game-tying goal in Valpo’s draw with Southern Illinois.
Joiner earns postseason recognition from the conference for the first time and does so at the highest level, as she is one of just three underclassmen to earn First Team All-MVC honors. The sophomore led the Valley in the regular season with seven goals scored and ranked second with 14 points. Six of Joiner’s seven goals came within MVC-only play, tying her for conference-high honors, and came one apiece in six of Valpo’s seven conference wins. Included in that tally are match-winning goals against Drake and at Belmont, as well as a first-half equalizer at Murray State.
Much like DuSatko, Norfolk took a step forward this season to claim First Team honors after being a Second Team honoree last season. The stalwart center back continued to anchor the Beacon back line this season, playing all but 14 minutes of Valpo’s first 15 matches of the season before suffering an injury early at Belmont Oct. 13. With Norfolk on the field during Valley play, Valpo surrendered just one goal in 544 minutes of play. She got in the mix offensively as well, heading home a corner kick for the eventual match-winning goal against UIC.
A Second Team All-MVC selection this season, Anderson picked up postseason honors for the first time. A steady presence at holding midfielder for the Beacons, the senior tied for the team high this season with five assists — a mark which is tied for fourth in a single season in program history. Four of Anderson’s five assists came in MVC play, tied for second in the conference. Included among Anderson’s helpers was an assist on the match-winning goal at UNI and an assist on the first-half equalizer at Murray State. In the 17 matches she has played in, Anderson went the full 90 minutes 12 times and only came off the field for a total of 58 minutes.
One season after being named to the MVC All-Freshman Team, White brings in Third Team All-MVC honors this year for her work at left back. The sophomore is part of a defensive unit which surrendered just five goals in Valpo’s 10 MVC matches and posted a total of seven clean sheets in the regular season. On the attack, White scored goals in wins over UIC and at Murray State — the latter a magnificent run all the way from covering the post off a defensive corner to the offensive 18-yard box to finish what proved to be the match-winner.
O’Rear represents Valpo on the MVC All-Freshman Team this season thanks to her strong work as an attacking midfielder. She ranked sixth in the league in goals (4) and ninth in points (10) overall, but all 10 of her points came within Valley play, as she finished the MVC regular season third in goals and fourth in points in conference-only matches. In her very first Valley match, O’Rear scored the lone goal of a 1-0 win at UNI with under four minutes to play, and later in the campaign added another match-winner against Evansville. Her assists against Drake and versus UIC both came on match-winning goals as well.
For the first time since joining the MVC, the Valpo coaching staff claims the MVC Coaching Staff of the Year award. Under the tutelage of Marovich, the Beacons have improved their final regular season placement in each of the last four years: going from joint sixth in 2018, to fifth in 2019, to tied for third in spring 2021, to runners-up last fall and to regular season champions this season. Additionally, in each of Valpo’s six seasons in the Valley, the program has matched or exceeded its projected placement in the preseason poll.
In his 15th season at the helm of the Valpo program, Marovich earns postseason recognition for the second time, as he was previously the 2014 Horizon League Coach of the Year. Brianne Barnes joined the Beacons’ coaching staff in the summer of 2021 and has helped guide Valpo to 18 victories overall and a combined 13-2-3 record in conference play over the last two years, while Noah Smith is in his first season on staff, working with the goalkeepers as a graduate assistant.
Valpo’s four First Team honorees sets a program record for postseason honors, as the program previously boasted three First Team All-League recipients on three occasions. The Beacons have had multiple First Team All-MVC honorees each of the last three seasons, and also have had at least one representative on the MVC All-Freshman Team in each of their six seasons in the conference.
Valpo was also officially presented with the 2022 MVC Women’s Soccer Regular Season Champions trophy on Wednesday evening. The title is Valpo’s first team championship as an athletic department since joining the Valley.