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Senior's soccer skills, academic prowess lead to success

Matt Bray stands in front of a brick wall and smiles.Whitworth Men's Soccer defender Matt Bray, '15, was named to the 2014-15 College Sports Information Directors of Amercia (CoSIDA) Academic All-District VIII Men's Soccer Team for Division III. Bray, a health science major from Spokane, Wash., entered the fall semester with a 3.89 grade point average. He also was named the Northwest Conference Defensive Player of the Year for the 2014 season.

Bray says being a part of the athletics program at Whitworth has had a dramatic effect on the way he defines success. "In our program, success is achieved by doing everything we can to be the best people we are capable of becoming," he says. "I've learned that regardless of the outcome, we can be successful in all areas of life knowing that there is no substitute for hard work."

Bray started 21 of 22 matches this season for the Pirates. He served as a captain and helped lead Whitworth to its fifth conference championship in eight years, with a 17-2-3 overall record, including an 10-1-3 record in the NWC. His defensive prowess contributed to the team's 0.92 goals-against average for the season, the second-lowest mark in the conference.

The Division III Academic All-District VIII consists of schools from 21 states in the Midwest and West regions of the United States, as well as Canada. Players are nominated and selected by members of CoSIDA. Eligible nominees must be a starter or important reserve with a cumulative grade point average of 3.30 or better, and hold sophomore standing or higher.

Whitworth Men's Soccer finished the season Nov. 23 with a winning percentage of .841, the third-best win percentage in the program's history. To learn more about Whitworth Athletics, visit