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2012 Archives


2012 FINAL RECORD: 12-6-0






Night Hawks Student Athletes Soar in Classroom

July 12, 2013

The Thomas University student athletes soared in the classroom during the 2012-13 academic year.

A total of 18 Night Hawks were named to the Presidents List for the spring 2013 semester. Men’s soccer led the way with seven student athletes receiving perfect 4.0’s. Thirty three student athletes were also named to the Dean’s List which honors students with a 3.5 GPA or above for the semester. Men’s soccer also led the way on the Dean’s List with 9 nine student athletes represented.

Five Night Hawk athletic teams were honored by the NAIA for their academic success during the 2012-13 academic year. Men’s Swimming (3.59), Men’s Soccer (3.36), Women’s Golf (3.36), Men’s Golf (3.17), and Women’s Soccer (3.12)   were named NAIA Scholar Teams finishing the year with a 3.0 or higher cumulative team grade point average. It is the second consecutive year that Men’s Soccer, Women’s Soccer and Women’s Golf receive the distinction.


TU Men's Soccer Player Nathan Would receives President’s Award at Thomas University

May 8, 2013

(Courtesy of Thomas University Office of Communications)

Thomas University Senior Men's Soccer player Nathan Would (Cleethorpes, United Kingdom) received the President’s Award, the highest honor presented to a graduating student, during the annual Honors Reception held May 3 at the Best Western Rose City Conference Center in Thomasville, Ga.

When presenting the award, Dr. Gary Bonvillian, President of Thomas University, applauded Would’s efforts during his time as a student. Would graduated Magna Cum Laude on May 4 with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Secondary Education.

Would has maintained a 3.86 cumulative grade point average as an undergraduate students while attending classes full time, playing soccer for TU, assisting other students as a teaching assistant and peer tutor in TU’s Academic Resource Center, and serving as a member of the TU Honor Council.

As a member of the Night Hawks Men’s Soccer Team, Would served three seasons as team captain. Twice he was selected as an NAIA Scholar Athlete All American and a NSCAA Scholar Athlete All South.  In 2012 he was also named a Second Team Scholar Athlete All American by the NSCAA. Would received the Dean’s Scholarship for the 2012-13 academic year. On two occasions he was named as an NAIA and NSCAA Third Team All American. In 2012 he received the TU Men’s Soccer program’s highest award, the Excellence Award, which is presented for demonstrated excellence in academics, athletics and community service. In November 2012, the Sun Conference named Would as its nomination for the NAIA Dr. LeRoy Walker Champion of Character Award.

His professors, coaches and teammates applaud Would’s leadership abilities as an athlete and as a scholar. It’s this leadership that Would plans to use in the classroom as a secondary English teacher.

During the Honors Reception, Would was also recognized with the award for Outstanding Student in the Bachelor of Science, Secondary English degree program.


Two Night Hawks Honored by NSCAA

December 28, 2012

Two Night Hawks were honored by the National Soccer Coaches Association of America for their success on the field and in the classroom during the 2012 season.

Senior captain Nathan Would continued his incredible run of post season honors being named by the NSCAA a Third Team All American, Second Team Scholar All American (College Division), First Team All East Region, and First Team Scholar All South Region (College Division). The native of Cleethorpes, England was earlier named a Third Team All American by the NAIA and was selected to the First Team All Sun Conference Team. Would is a repeat selection as First Team Scholar All South Region (College Division) after being named in 2011. Junior Andi Hoffer was also named to the Second Team Scholar All South Region (College Division). To be nominated for the NSCAA Scholar Athlete honor, a student athlete must have at least a 3.30 cumulative grade point average (on a 4.0 scale) throughout his or her career; start more than 50 percent of all games, be a significant contributor to the team and be a junior or above. Hoffer and Would were also named Daktronics-NAIA Scholar Atheletes earlier in the month.

NSCAA All America Teams

NSCAA Scholar All America (College Division)

NSCAA All East Team

NSCAA Scholar All South (College Division)


Would Named NAIA Third Team All-American

December 7, 2012

Senior midfielder Nathan Would was named a 2012 NAIA Third Team All-American by the NAIA Men's Soccer All-America Selection Committee in recognition of his achievements for the Night Hawks this past season.

The native of Cleethorpes, England led the Night Hawks in assists (8) and finished second in goals (8) and total points (24).  He was one of only four student athletes from The Sun Conference to be selected to the All-America list and the only one selected to one of the teams, with three being named Honorable Mention. The selection marks the first time since 2002, when Keith Dunne was selected to the Second Team, that a Night Hawk is named to one of All-American Teams. A total of 33 players were named to the First, Second and Third Teams. Would was named First Team All-Sun Conference back in November and finished among the top two highest vote getters for his position and among the top six overall in the All-Conference voting for Conference Player of the Year.


Hoffer and Would Named Daktronics-NAIA Scholar Athletes

December 7, 2012

Senior team captain Nathan Would (Cleethorpes, England) and junior team captain Andi Hoffer (Ingolstadt, Germany) were named to the 2012 Daktronics-NAIA Scholar Athlete list. Would is a repeat selection having also been honored in 2011.

A total of 315 men's soccer players across the country were recognized and the two Night Hawks were part of a total of 20 men's soccer student athletes from The Sun Conference to be named. Nominated by each institution's head coach, a student-athlete must maintain a minimum grade point average of 3.5 on a 4.0 scale and have achieved junior academic status to qualify.

For entire list click HERE.


Four Men's Soccer Players Named to TSC All Conference First Team, Two on Second Team

2012 All Conference

November 10, 2012

Four men's soccer players were named to The All Sun Conference First Team and two were voted into the Second Team. The six players selected overall and four on the First Team was tops amongst TSC men's soccer teams.

Senior midfielder Nathan Would, junior goalkeeper Andi Hoffer (4 shutouts, 60 saves), junior forward Rowan Liburd and freshman defender Stacey Freeman were all First Team selections. Sophomore forward Diego Hurtado (4 goals, 4 assists, 12 points) and sophomore defender Luke Salmon (2 goals, 1 assist, 5 points) received Second Teams nods. Freeman and Hoffer both were named TSC Defensive Player of the Week during the season, with Hoffer going on to be named NAIA National Defensive Player of the Week. Liburd led the Night Hawks in Points (32) and Goals (14) while Would led the team in Assists (8) and was second in Goals (8) and Points (24). The tandem finished in the TSC Top Ten in Goals, Assists and Points.  Hoffer, Would and freshman Danny Berrios all were named to the Academic All conference Team.

2012 TSC All Conference Teams


Northwood Eliminates TU Men's Soccer From TSC Tourney in OT

November 3, 2012

Northwood University (13-5) scored a goal 1:20 into the first overtime period to eliminate TU Men's Soccer from the TSC Tournement with a 3-2 golden goal victory.

More to come....


Night Hawks Seeded #4 in TSC Tournament

November 1, 2012

The Night Hawks (12-5, 7-3) are seeded #4 in the 2012 Men's Soccer Sun Conference Tournament and will host #5 Northwood University in the Quarter Final Round at 2PM on Saturday at the TU Soccer Complex.

TU will be making their third straight post season appearance and fourth in five years. Thomas will make their first appearance in the TSC Tourney after competing in the Association of Independent Institutions the last four years. In 2011, TU fell to California State University - San Marcos in the Championship Game of the A.I.I. Conference Tournament. During the regular season, the Night Hawks topped Northwood 2-0 in a match that at that time featured the top two teams in the conference standings. Northwood enters the game having dropped three of their last four games while TU has dropped two of their last three.

Live Stats

The Sun Conference Tournament Page


Would Nominated for NAIA Dr. LeRoy Walker Award

November 1, 2012

(Courtest of TSC Sports Information)

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. - Nathan Would, a senior midfielder for the Thomas (Ga.) men's soccer team has earned the distinction of being The Sun Conference nominee for the 2012-13 NAIA Dr. LeRoy Walker Champion of Character Award.
Would, a native of Cleethorpes, England, boasts a 3.84 GPA in his major of Secondary Grades Education with a concentration in English instruction. Would is the Night Hawks' team captain, appearing in 61 games with 20 goals and 18 assists. He has garnered numerous athletic achievements, including first team All-Conference honors, NAIA All-Tournament selection, Sun Conference Player of the Week accolades, and Thomas' Team Excellence Award. Would's achievements off the field are just as impressive, being named an NSCAA Scholar-Athlete All-South Team, an NAIA Scholar-Athlete, earning Thomas University President's List and Dean's List distinction, becoming the Vice President of Education for the Thomas Honor Council, a member of the Thomas Campus Activity Board, serving as an English tutor and as a teaching assistant for Remedial English classes, a member of the Alpha Chi fraternity and a participant in the Goalline Ministries Leadership Team.
"Nathan is what we as coaches call, a once in a lifetime caliber of a student athlete," Ricky Zambrano, Thomas' men's soccer Head Coach and Associate Athletic Director said. "Since his arrival to campus in August of 2009, he has demonstrated all the character necessary to be successful not only throughout his collegiate experience, but more importantly in life. In his early days as a part of our program we immediately knew that he was a natural leader and a young man with a very high level of self-discipline in all that he does. More importantly we knew that he would be an outstanding representative for Thomas University." The criteria for the NAIA Dr. LeRoy Walker Champions of Character Award is stated as follows: the nominee must be a representative of an NAIA institution as a student-athlete; the nominee must be at least a junior academic status at the nominating institution at the time of nomination; the nominee must be “outstanding” in academic achievement (3.0 GPA or higher), outstanding in campus and community leadership, outstanding in embracing the five core values of the NAIA Champions of Character initiative (respect, integrity, responsibility, sportsmanship and servant leadership), outstanding in athletic achievement, and outstanding in future ambition.        


Late Goal Lifts SCAD over TU

October 25, 2012

A goal with 2:16 left in regulation helped to lift SCAD- Savannah (9-5-1, 7-2-1) to a 3-2 Sun Conference victory over TU (12-5, 7-3) in Savannah, GA.

The Night Hawks led 1-0 at half on a goal by senior midfielder Nathan Would with an assist from fellow senior midfielder Luciano Lorca. For the second straight game, TU was unable to hold a 1-0 lead when SCAD tied the game ten minutes into the second half. The Bees would take the lead nine minutes later when they tapped in a rebound inside the Thomas six yard box. Down by one, TU tied the game on a goal by junior forward Rowan Liburd at the 73:01 mark of the game and missed a couple of further chances to take the lead in games final 15 minutes. Thomas held the advantage in shots on goal (10-5) and corner kicks (6-3) put were turned away by eight saves by the SCAD goalkeeper.

With the loss TU faces it's first two game losing streak of the season. After holding the lead in the TSC just last week, the streak drops men's soccer to a third place finish in the regular season. Thomas will enter the conference tournament seeded #3 and will host an opponent to be named later in the November 3rd quarter final round.


Three Unanswered Goals Leads Embry Riddle Past Thomas

October 20, 2012

Three unanswered goals led the host Embry Riddle University Eagles (5-8-1, 5-3-1) to a 3-1 victory of Thomas Men's Soccer (12-4, 7-2) on Saturday evening in Daytona Beach, FL.

TU opened the game in a dominant way firing off five shots over the first ten minutes of the game. Sophomore defender Luke Salmon gave the Night Hawks the lead in the 14th minute, drilling a left footed strike  into the ERU far post from just inside the left corner of the 18 yard box. The Night Hawks maintained control of the game over the first 35 minutes of the game, playing mostly in the Eagles half of the field while connecting 11 shots, nine on goal. ERU slowly took control of the last ten minutes of the half and evened the score in the 42nd minute. Tied at half, the teams exchanged control of the game early in the half but it was Riddle that would score in the 58th and 80th minutes to put the game away. TU outshot Riddle 18-7 and collected 6 corner kicks without allowing any to the Eagles.

The Night Hawks have fallen to 2nd in The Sun Conference and will next travel to Savannah, GA to face SCAD-Savannah on Thursday at 7PM, looking to clinch a home playoff game on November 3rd.


Freeman Tabbed as TSC Defensive Player of the Week

October 15, 2012

Freshman defender Stacey Freeman was tabbed as The Sun Conference Defensive Player of the Week after helping lead the Night Hawks to a undefeated week.

Freeman was dominant in the Night Hawks defensive line during both victories. TU allowed only one goal in the week and blanked NAIA #22 Northwood University on Sunday. Men's soccer has recorded three shutouts in TSC play while only allowing five goals in eight games. Freeman is the third Night Hawk selected as Defensive Player of the Week this season and the fourth overall named Player of the Week.

TU will be looking for their fifth win in a row on Saturday October 20 when they travel to Daytona Beach, FL to face Embry Riddle University at 7PM in search of clinching a top four seed in the conference tournament.


TU Tops NAIA #22 Northwood in Battle For Top of TSC Standings

Senior Day 2012

October 14, 2012

TU (12-3, 7-1) topped NAIA #22 Northwood University (11-3, 6-1), 2-0, in a battle for the top of The Sun Conference Standings on Sunday afternoon at the Thomas University Soccer Complex.

Thomas used a high intensity and aggressive style of play from the first whistle keeping NU on their heels for most of the game. Senior Luciano Lorca got the Night Hawks on the board at the 15:34 mark of the half when his thru ball pass was deflected into the goal by a Northwood defender. TU created other opportunities in the half but were unable to extend their lead before the half. Seventeen minutes into the second half the Night Hawks made it a two goal game when senior Nathan Would penetrated a thru ball that found junior midfielder Geffree Saintilien sprinting towards the goal. Saintillien delicately flicked the ball past the rushing NU goalkeeper for his first goal of the season. TU held the advantage in all statistical areas, outshooting Northwood 21-5 (10-3, shot on goal). The shutout was the Night Hawks fourth of the season and third in conference play. TU has outscored their TSC opponents 18-5.

It was a fitting way to close out the home portion of the regular season and a memorable send off for the six seniors. TU honored their seniors in a pre game ceremony; Gavin Cameron, Angus Cox, Bradley Tuggle, Gary Watkins, Lorca and Would were escorted on to the field by family and friends where they received a memento to commemorate their Night Hawk soccer career.

Men's soccer is now 7-1 in TSC play and is in the hunt for a Regular Season Conference Championship and #1 seed in the TSC Tournament. TU finished the regular season 7-1 at home and will be looking for their fifth win in a row on Saturday October 20 when they travel to Daytona Beach, FL to face Embry Riddle University at 7PM in search of clinching a top four seed in the conference tournament.


Night Hawks Soar to Victory over Wildcats

October 11, 2012

The Night Hawks (11-3, 6-1) soared to a 6-1 Sun Conference victory over the visiting Johnson & Wales University Wildcats (3-8, 0-5) on Thursday afternoon on the campus of Thomas University.

TU dominated from the opening whistle racking up a total of 27 shots (15 on goal) and dominating possession of the ball for the large majority of the game. JWU was able to keep the Night Hawks off the scoreboard for the first 45 minutes but only 1:55 into the second half sophomore midfielder Adam Woollcott gave TU a lead they would not relinquish when he found the back of the net on a strike from the top of the box. Woollcott struck again less than ten minutes later with his second goal of the game on another strike from the top of the box on an assist by senior midfielder Nathan Would. TU would allow the Wildcats back into the game with a free kick goal that once again made it a one goal game. However, the Night Hawks sealed the victory with four goals in the final 23 minutes. Would and junior forward Rowan Liburd each added two goals of their own. Freshman midfielder Cesar Ballesteros contributed with two assists.

Thomas will welcome NAIA #22 Northwood University on Sunday at 2PM in a battle for the top spot in the TSC. Northwood is currently 6-0 in conference play and holds a one game lead over the Night Hawks. Sunday will also mark the final regular season home game for six Night Hawks seniors: Gavin Cameron, Angus Cox, Luciano Lorca, Bradley Tuggle, Gary Watkins, and Nathan Would. The six will be recognized their achievements in a pre game ceremony.


Thomas Men's Soccer Defeats St. Thomas

October 7, 2012

Thomas Men's Soccer (10-3, 5-1) defeated St. Thomas University (5-3-1, 4-1) 3-1 on Sunday afternoon in a crucial Sun Conference match at the Wendy's Soccer Complex.

Junior forward Rowan Liburd picked up his 10th goal of the season just 12:56 into the game when he received a thru ball from sophomore midfielder Adam Woollcott and chipped the ball over the head of the closing STU goalkeeper. TU wasted many first opportunities to extend their lead and took a 1-0 lead into the locker room. The Night Hawks continued to put the pressure on the Bobcats of St. Thomas in the second half and broke through at the 59:38 mark of the game on a goal by junior forward Danny Zevallos that was assisted by senior midfielder Nathan Would. STU got a goal back midway thru the half to once again make it a one goal game but the Night Hawks struck back with a third goal by sophomore forward Diego Hurtado on an assist by Liburd to put the game away.

With the win, TU moves one game behind conference leader Northwood University for first place in the TSC. The Night Hawks will remain at home looking for their sixth conference win of the year when they welcome a dangerous Johnson and Wales University on Thursday afternoon for a 4:30PM kickoff.


Night Hawks Score Late to Top FMU

October 5, 2012

The Night Hawks (9-3, 4-1) scored two goals in the games final ten minutes to top Florida Memorial University (4-4-1, 2-1-1) 2-1 in a Sun Conference match on Friday afternoon at the Wendy's Soccer Complex.

Down 1-0 at half, TU showed determination to start the second half in search of the game tying goal. The Night Hawks created many chances but were unable to tie the game early in the second. With 9:12 left in the game, the Night Hawks finally broke through when sophomore forward Diego Hurtado penetrated a ball inside the FMU eighteen yard box that was deposited into the far netting of the Lions goal by  junior forward Rowan Liburd for the game tying goal. After tying the game it did not take long for Thomas to capitalize on their new found confidence, striking once again only 3:40 later when Liburd knocked in the game winner past a closing Florida Memorial goalkeeper after senior Nathan Would was able to find him in stride running into the 18 yard box.

Men's Soccer improves to 4-1 in TSC play and will welcome St. Thomas University to the Wendy's Soccer Complex on Sunday at 4PM. A win will tie TU for second place in the current TSC standings.

Follow the game LIVE on WEBCAST by clicking HERE.


Warner Upsets TU

September 30, 2012

A goal with four minutes left in the first half proved to be the difference as Warner University (3-5, 1-3) pulled off a 1-0 upset win over Thomas University (8-3, 3-1) on Sunday evening in Lake Wales, FL.

TU outshot WU 19-10 but failed to convert on any scoring opportunities, finishing with only five shots on goal. The shutout of the Night Hawks, marks the first time they are held scoreless in 2012.

The Night Hawks are back at home on Friday October 5th when they will be looking to hand the first conference defeat of the season to the visiting Florida Memorial University Lions. Kickoff is set for 4:30PM.


Second Half Goals Lift Men's Soccer over Webber

September 28, 2012

Two second half goals lifted Men's Soccer (8-2, 3-0) to a 2-0 Sun Conference victory over Webber International University (2-5, 0-3) on Friday afternoon at the Wendy's Soccer Complex.

After a scoreless first half in which TU outshot Webber 12-1, senior midfielder Nathan Would scored his fourth goal of the season on a free kick from the top of the 18 yard box in the 10th minute of the second half. The Night Hawks would go on to dominate the remainder of the half but would find it hard to capitalize on their opportunities after firing off 16 shots in the half. Sophomore Luke Salmon added the final goal with ten seconds left to play knocking in a rebound from the edge of the six yard box.

The Night Hawks remain unbeaten in TSC play at 3-0 and sit in a five team tie for the top spot in the conference standings. Men's Soccer will look to extend their win streak to five and remain at the top of the standings on Sunday when they travel to Lake Wales, FL to face Warner University in a 5PM kick off.


TU's Conway Named TSC Defensive Player of the Week

September 25, 2012

For the second time in the last three weeks, a TU men's soccer player was honored by The Sun Conference as junior defender Steven Conway was named TSC Defensive Player of the Week for the week of September 17-23.

Conway (Tralee, Ireland) was recognized for his contributions in two TSC wins for the Night Hawks. On Thursday Conway and the Thomas defense recorded a 1-0 shutout of Ave Maria University in their first conference match of the year and on Saturday Conway scored the game winning goal in a 2-1 victory over Southeastern University. Conway is the third Night Hawk named TSC Player of the Week during the 2012 season.

After dropping last week to #19 in the NAIA National Poll, TU rose 5 spots into a tie for #14 in this weeks Top 25. Thomas will look to stay undefeated in conference play on Friday September 28 when they welcome Webber International University for their TSC home opener at 4:30PM


Conway's Late Goal Lifts Night Hawks

September 20, 2012

A late goal by TU junior defender Steven Conway, with 14 minutes to play, lifted TU (7-2, 2-0) to a 2-1 Sun Conference victory over Southeastern University (3-3, 0-2) on Saturday evening in Lakeland, FL.

After a scoreless first half, senior midfielder Luciano Lorca gave TU the lead just 7:29 into the second half when he beat a defender on the dribble and struck the ball from 20 yards out beating the SEU goalkeeper on the ground to his far post. With the Night Hawks seemingly gaining control of the game, Southeastern attempted to cross a ball into the box that was ruled to have been hand balled by a TU player. SEU converted the penalty kick to tie the game with 24:29 left in the game. TU continued to press, missing a couple of close scoring chances, but eventually notched the game winner and this time around disallowed SEU an opportunity to equalize.

The Night Hawks improve to 2-0 in TSC play and will next face Webber International University on Friday September 28 at 4:30PM in their TSC home opener.


TU Opens TSC Play With Victory

September 20, 2012

TU (6-2, 1-0) opened play in The Sun Conference with a 1-0 victory over Ave Maria University (1-5, 0-1) on Thursday evening in a rain soaked Ave Maria, FL.

Junior forward Rowan Liburd gave Thomas an early advantage when he beat two AMU defenders and struck the ball low and hard past goalkeepers left foot. With a 1-0 lead TU held on and picked up it's second shutout of the season, overcoming sloppy and wet conditions that disallowed both teams from creating any quality of play.

The win marks the first TSC victory for any Thomas University athletic team. TU will look to open conference play 2-0 on Saturday when they travel to Lakeland, FL to take on Southeastern University at 6PM.


Thomas Men's Soccer Tops Spring Hill in OT

September 16, 2012

Junior forward Rowan Liburd scored the game winning Golden Goal five minutes into the first overtime period as Thomas (5-2) topped Spring Hill College (5-2) 3-2 on Sunday afternoon at the Wendy's Soccer Complex in game four of the First Annual TSC/SSAC Challenge.

Spring Hill opened the scoring twenty minutes into the game after withholding an initial TU attacking surge in the first 19 minutes. The teams exchanged possession of the ball and scoring opportunities in the final twenty five minutes but each goalkeeper recorded two saves a piece. TU junior midfielder Danny Zevallos found a great time to score his first goal as a Night Hawk, equalizing the game at one with a blazing strike from the top of the 18 yard box only three minutes into the second half. Two minutes later sloppy defensive play by the Night Hawks created an easy scoring opportunity for Spring Hill, once again giving them a one goal advantage. Down by one, Thomas created scoring opportunity after scoring opportunity but was unable to tie the game until senior midfielder Luciano Lorca split the SHC defense with a precise pass that found Liburd inside the 18 yard box, Liburd took a touch and beat the Spring Hill goalkeeper to the far post for the equalizing goal with 12 minutes to play. Not satisfied with a tie, TU pushed forward for the game winner but was unable to find it in the final 12 minutes of regulation. The Night Hawks reeled off 21 shots in the final half of play but were turned away four times by the Spring Hill goalkeeper. From the start of OT the Night Hawks continued to impose their attack until they finally broke through when sophomore defender Luke Salmon found Liburd with a long thru ball that was placed to the far post for the golden goal.

On Thursday September 20th TU, for the first time in program history, will play a conference match as they begin play in The Sun Conference. The Night Hawks will open TSC play with a match up against Ave Maria University at 6PM in Ave Maria, FL.


Warriors Clip The Night Hawks

September 14, 2012

The Southern Wesleyan University Warriors (4-0) clipped the Night Hawks (4-2), 2-1, on Friday afternoon at the Wendy's Soccer Complex.

SWU took advantage of a TU team that was not on the same page from the first whistle, to take a 1-0 advantage with a goal in the 10th minute. TU held the Warriors without another shot on goal for the remainder of the half and evened the game with three minutes left in the half when junior forward Rowan Liburd knocked in a ball that was miscleared from inside of the Southern Wesleyan six yard box. After the break, SWU killed the bit of momentum that Thomas had gained from the equalizing goal by retaking the lead just five minutes into the second half. TU would create numerous opportunities in the final forty minutes of play but were unable to breakthrough for the game tying goal.

TU will be back on the field this Sunday at 2PM, when they host Spring Hill College in game four of the First Annual TSC/SSAC Challenge. Tomorrow at Remington Park, Southern Wesleyan will face Warner University at 6:30PM in game three of the Challenge.


Men's Soccer #14 in NAIA Men's Soccer Coaches Top 25 Poll

September 11, 2012

Men's Soccer (4-1) checked in at #14 in the second regular-season edition of the 2012 NAIA Men's Soccer Coaches Top 25 Poll.

TU collected a total of 267 points after having dropped out of the Top 35 in the first regular season poll. The Night Hawks entered the season "Receiving Votes" after collecting 24 votes in the pre season poll on August 14. This marks the first time that Men's Soccer breaks the Top 25 Poll since November 4, 2003 when they appeared at #23. The ranking is the first for a TU Athletic Program since Women's Golf checked in at #25 on March 8, 2011 and it is the highest National Ranking since Softball climbed to #13 on May 9, 2007.

"We are happy that people have recognized the players for a good start", said TU Head Coach Ricky Zambrano. "A lot of players have worked hard since 2003 to get the program recognized and we appreciate the work done by all of them. This ranking is simply a recognition and it will not help us win our next match. We must focus in on our upcoming opponent rather than any results we posted last week."

Thomas will look to make it three wins in a row on Friday at 4:30PM when they welcome Southern Wesleyan University for Game One of the First Annual Sun Conference / Southern States Athletic Conference Challenge. Game two of the Challenge will feature Warner University (TSC) and Spring Hill College (SSAC) at Remington Park. Kickoff for game two is set for 5:30PM.


Hoffer Named NAIA National Defensive Player of the Week

September 11, 2012

(Courtesy of NAIA Sports Information)

KANSAS CITY, Mo. - Andi Hoffer of Thomas (Ga.) has been named the NAIA National Men's Soccer Defensive Player of the Week, the national office announced Tuesday. Hoffer was selected based on his performances from Sept. 3 - 9 and was chosen out of a pool of 20 student athletes from conference/independent/unaffiliated groupings from across the country.

Hoffer, a 6-foot, junior goalkeeper from Ingolstadt, Germany, notched two wins against ranked opponents last week. In the 3-2 victory over NCAA Division II and 19th-ranked Christian Brothers (Tenn.) on Sept. 3, Hoffer stopped seven of nine shots-on-goal. He followed that up with a four-save effort in the 4-1 win against No. 9 Mobile (Ala.) on Sept. 8. Mobile has been averaging five goals in each of its first three matches on the season. Overall, Hoffer totaled 11 saves in 180 minutes. On the season, Hoffer is 4-1-0 in goal with 20 saves.

The honor is the first for a Night Hawk Men's Soccer Player since Keith Dunne was honored in 2002.


Night Hawks Men's Soccer Sweeps TSC Player of the Week Award Honors

September 11, 2012

The Night Hawks Men's Soccer team swept the Player of the Week honors awarded by The Sun Conference for the week of September 3-9.

Junior goalkeeper Andi Hoffer (Ingolstadt, Germany) was named the TSC Defensive Player of the Week after posting back to back victories in the Night Hawks net against Top 25 opponents. Hoffer collected 11 saves and allowed 3 goals in 180 minutes of play. Senior midfielder Nathan Would (Cleethorpes, England) was also honored by the conference, being tabbed as the TSC Offensive Player of the Week. Would had two goals, two assists and six total points in the week, including a game winning goal against NAIA #9 University of Mobile. Hoffer and Would are both team Co-Captains and played a major role in the undefeated week. This double honor marks the first time in TU's short time in the Sun Conference that a male athlete is recognized by the league and is also the first time in program history that multiple men's soccer players are honored with Player of the Week Honors in the same week.

Thomas will look to make it three in a row on Friday at 4:30PM when they welcome Southern Wesleyan University for Game One of the First Annual Sun Conference / Southern States Athletic Conference Challenge. Game two of the Challenge will feature Warner University (TSC) and Spring Hill College (SSAC) at Remington Park. Kickoff for game two is set for 5:30PM.


Thomas Men's Soccer Knocks Off NAIA #9 Mobile

September 8, 2012

Thomas Men's Soccer (4-1) knocked off NAIA #9 University of Mobile (2-1-1), 4-1, on a soggy Saturday afternoon at the Wendy's Soccer Complex in Thomasville, GA.

Senior midfielder Nathan Would gave TU the early lead with a goal 13 minutes into the first half on an assist by junior forward Rowan Liburd. In the 32nd minute of the first half Liburd gave the Night Hawks a two goal advantage when he knocked home an assist by sophomore midfielder Adam Woollcott. UM made it a one goal game two minutes before the end of the first half. The fans were treated to an exciting first 17 minutes of the second half with both teams exchanging scoring opportunities but in the 18th minute of the half freshman midfielder Stacey Freeman knocked in a header off a corner kick service by Would for the 3-1 advantage. Sophomore forward Diego Hurtado put the game out of reach when he stripped a UM defender of the ball and went one on one with the Mobile goalkeeper, beating him to his right side and securing the victory for the Night Hawks.

The win for the Night Hawks, marks the 2nd in a row against Top 25 opponents after defeating NCAA D2 Christian Brothers University on Monday. Thomas will look to make it three in a row on Friday at 4:30PM when they welcome Southern Wesleyan University for Game One of the First Annual Sun Conference / Southern States Athletic Conference Challenge. Game two of the Challenge will feature Warner University (TSC) and Spring Hill College (SSAC) at Remington Park. Kickoff for game two is set for 5:30PM.


TU Edges NCAA D2 #19 CBU

September 3, 2012

TU (3-1) edged NCAA D2 Christian Brothers University (0-2), 3-2, on Monday afternoon in Young Harris, GA.

The Night Hawks opened the scoring in the 12th minute of the game on a goal by senior forward Gary Watkins. TU extended their lead at the 35:55 mark of the first with a goal by senior midfielder Nathan Would. CBU got back into the game, making it a one goal game with 57 seconds left in the half. After a back and forth first seven minutes of the half, Christian Brothers equalized in the 9th minute. Less than two minutes later sophomore forward Diego Hurtado gave TU the lead back with a strike from just inside the 18 that beat the CBU keeper to the far post. The teams exchanged control of the game and scoring opportunities the rest of the way but it was the Night Hawks that held on for the win.

After beginning the season with four road games, Thomas will welcome NAIA #12 University of Mobile to the Wendy's Soccer Complex for their 2012 home opener on Saturday September 8 at 4PM.


NCAA D2 Young Harris Mountain Lions Maul Night Hawks

September 2, 2012

The NCAA D2 Young Harris College Mountain Lions (2-0) mauled the TU Night Hawks (2-1) 5-2 on Sunday afternoon in Young Harris, GA.

After an evenly matched first 34 minutes, YHC scored at the 34:39 mark of the first and made it a two goal game less than four minutes later. The Mountain Lions seized complete control of the game with their third goal just three minutes into the game. TU Sophomore forward Diego Hurtado and senior forward Gary Watkins each had a goal.

TU will look to rebound tomorrow at 3PM when they face NCAA D2 #19 Christian Brothers University at Young Harris College.


Second Half Goals Lift Men's Soccer

August 25, 2012

Two second half goals lifted Thomas men's soccer (2-0) to a 2-1 victory over Faulkner University (1-1) on Saturday afternoon in Montgomery, AL.

A lacksidasical first half, in which TU out possesed the Eagles, found Thomas down by one. An inspired second half effort led to a barrage of chances and the majority of the game being played in the Faulkner half of the field. Five minutes into the half sophomore midfielder Diego Hurtado stripped a Faulkner defender of the ball leading to a breakaway with the goalkeeper, as the Faulkner keeped closed the oncoming Hurtado he slid a ball past the keeper to junior forward Rowan Liburd for the empty net tap in goal. With 12 minutes left to play, senior forward Gary Watkins knocked in a rebound for the eventual game winner.

TU will look to make it three in a row to start the season on Sunday September 2nd, when they travel to Young Harris, GA to face Young Harris College in a 4PM kickoff.


TU Opens Season with Shutout

August 23, 2012

TU Men's Soccer (1-0) opened their 2012 season with a 3-0 shutout of Florida College (0-1) on Thursday afternoon in Tampa, FL.

Seniors Nathan Would (1 goal, 1 assist) and Luciano Lorca (1 goal, 1 assist) each scored a goal for the Night Hawks. Junior forward Rowan Liburd also found the back of the net for TU. Thomas outshot Florida College 25-1 but only managed 11 shots on goal. The win marked the 100th career men's soccer coaching victory for Head Coach Ricky Zambrano.

Thomas will look to stay unbeaten on Saturday afternoon in Montgomery, AL when they face Faulkner University in a 6PM EST kickoff.


Night Hawks Men's Soccer Looking to Take Another Step Forward in 2012

August 22, 2012

The Night Hawks men's Soccer team will open their 2012 season tomorrow afternoon looking to take another step forward. TU will open their journey in Tampa, FL against Florida College at 6PM.

TU heads into the 2012 season looking for their third straight post season appearance after falling 3-1 in the A.I.I. Championship game last November. To take the next step TU will face a new competitors as they begin competition in The Sun Conference. TU was welcomed as a member of TSC last July as a provisionary member and now begins for the first time in school history Conference play in all sports for the 2012-13 school year. Thomas will hope to build upon their 2011 season when they held a 5-3 mark against TSC schools.

Head Coach Ricky Zambrano enters his eight season and returns one of his most experienced teams of his tenure. With 17 returners, including 9 starters, TU hopes to learn from last season and build upon the conference championship loss. Seniors Nathan Would (Cleethorpes, England) and Luciano Lorca (Stockholm, Sweden) will lead an experienced midfield line while 2011 NAIA Honorable Mention All American Rowan Liburd (Croydon, England) will be counted on to bring fire power to the Night Hawks forward line. Liburd led the Night Hawks in scoring last season with 11 goals. A back line, led by junior goalkeeper Andi Hoffer (Ingolstadt, Germany), that combined for six shut outs returns starters in four of five positions and will once again be counted to shut down the oppositions attack. Freshman defender Luis Rodriguez (Tampa, FL) will look to fill the void left in the back line by four year starter and 2011 First Team A.I.I. performer Matt Tanner. Junior forward Geffree Saintilien (Brooklyn, NY) transfers to Thomas after playing two years at Monroe College, a nationally recognized junior college that has made back to back appearances at the NJCAA National Tournament.

Thomas, who received votes in the NAIA pre season poll, faces another tough schedule in 2012 that includes seven non conference games. TU faces three opponents that appeared in their respective Top 25 Pre Season poll, featuring a visit to Thomasville by NAIA power house and pre season #12 University of Mobile in September. On the road TU will face NCAA D2 Pre Season #19 Christian Brothers University in their fourth game of the year and in October will travel to Daytona Beach, FL for a match up against NAIA Pre Season #19 and defending TSC Tournament Champion Embry Riddle University. TU opens TSC play on September 20 in Ave Maria, FL when they visit Ave Maria University in their first ever TSC match.


Five TU Athletic Programs Recognized by NAIA for Academic Achievements

July 27, 2012

Five TU Athletic Programs were recognized yesterday by the NAIA for their academic achievement throughout the 2011-12 school year, being named to the NAIA Scholar Teams list.

Women's Golf (3.13), Men's Golf (3.10), Women's Soccer (3.09). Men's Soccer (3.14) and Softball (3.10) were the five Night Hawks sports teams that named to the prestigious list that included 741 programs from across the country. Thomas University was one of five schools in The Sun Conference, TU's new athletic conference, with representatives on the list.

"We are very proud of the academic achievements of our athletic teams", said TUAthletic Director Mike Lee. "Congratulations to our coaching staffs for their continued efforts to set a high academic standard within their programs. Each and every year we have been able to improve the resources available to our Student Athletes and it has been showing. Academic achievements such as these can not be met without the support of our Faculty and Staff that play such a tremendous role with our kids. We expect our programs to be successful both on and off the field and this year we have definitely shown that ability."

To go along with the work in the classroom, this year TUsaw all six of it's athletic programs compete in post season play and three finished as Runner Up in their respective conference tournaments along with two golfers finishing in the top five as individuals at their respective tournaments. The Night Hawks also had a presence nationally with softball making it's fifth appearance at the National Tournament and women's golfer Jessica Macphee receiving an At Large selection to the Womens Golf National Tournament.

For a team to be considered for the NAIA Scholar Team award, it must have a minimum 3.0 grade-point average (on a 4.0 scale) as defined by the institution. The team grade-point average includes all varsity student-athletes certified as eligible.

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