Dakota Wesleyan University men's soccer goal keeper having stellar senior seasonDakota Wesleyan men’s soccer coach Jeremy Tosaya said Mitchell native and senior goalie Jordan Werner is having his best year yet.
By: Justin Rust, The Daily Republic
Dakota Wesleyan men’s soccer coach Jeremy Tosaya said Mitchell native and senior goalie Jordan Werner is having his best year yet.
That is saying something considering Werner was named the Great Plains Athletic Conference team as an honorable-mention selection his freshman and sophomore years.
But Werner is close to the top in almost every statistical category in the conference this fall.
Werner has already set a career high with shutouts this season with one match left in the regular season.
Shutouts are not the only career high Werner could set this year. He has made a career-high 102 saves for a save percentage of .850, which is also a career high. In GPAC play, Werner’s save percentage of .853 ranks second in the conference and he has also made the second-most saves in the conference with 87.
For the year, Werner has a goals-allowed average of 1.14 a game, which is the lowest of his career.
“The stats are showing that he is having a great year,” Tosaya said of Werner’s performance this year. “The big thing is he has gelled with the defense, and that has made for a good combination. He keeps us in every game.”
Werner has started every game in goal for the Tigers this year and has led the team to a .
Werner is quick to acknowledge why he has been able to have such a good year, though.
“It’s been a big team effort, it’s not just me, but the whole team,” he said. “They are the ones scoring the goals to get the win, and the defense has been helping me out, and the shutouts, that’s all of them, too.”
Werner has also enjoyed playing out his college career in the same city that he played in high school.
“I wanted to help this program improve and I felt I could contribute to the program and help take it to the next step,” he said. “It’s awesome seeing the community come out for games and seeing how this program has grown.”
Werner has left his mark on the program, too. Last year was the only year Werner did not make honorable mention in the GPAC. Werner finished the year with a 9-9-2 record with 90 saves, a save percentage of .726 and a 1.79 goals-against average.
Tosaya said last year has motivated Werner.
“He had a bit of an off year, but not that it was a bad year, he was just a little worse in the conference compared to the years before,” he said. “I know he was disappointed with how he started last year … and he played very well at the end of last year with the push that we had.”
Werner was still able to help DWU make its first-ever appearance in the GPAC playoffs. The Tigers went in as the seventh seed and knocked off second-seeded Doane before losing in the semifinals in double overtime against the University of Sioux Falls.
This year, Werner was determined to start the season better than last year. He said last year he did not have much time to prepare for the beginning of the season because of the internship he was working at.
This past summer got Werner more prepared for the start of the season. Werner played for the Nashville Metros in the Premier Developmental League, which is a semi-pro soccer league.
“For me to play in that, that was awesome for me and I was able to come into the preseason 100 percent right away,” Werner said. “That got me experience playing with a higher level style of play.”
Werner’s performance this year and at the PDL helped him earn an invite to the Tourbeau College Soccer Showcase, which will be held Dec. 5-9 in Orange Beach, Ala. About 120 players are invited to the Showcase, and seven Major League Soccer teams are expected to be in attendance to watch the matches during the event.
Even though Werner said he was excited to be invited to the Showcase, he is focused on helping his team make a long run in the playoffs.
“It’s been a great year and the team has really come together,” he said. “This is the year we could really be productive toward the end.
“The GPAC championship game would be the furthest we have ever been. We really think we can get there.”