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Alexander Dexter named National Player of the Week by College Soccer News

The Pitt forward scored one goal and assisted on two others in the top-ranked team's 5-0 rout of Virginia last week

Pitt forward Alexander Dexter played a vital role in his team’s 5-0 rout of Virginia to close the regular season last Thursday, and on Monday, he was recognized as the National Player of the Week by College Soccer News for his considerable efforts in the victory.

During the game, Dexter opened up the scoring three minutes into the contest, heading in a Veljko Petkovic corner kick vollied into the box by Raphael Crivello to put Pitt up 1-0.

Dexter then helped the Panthers punctuate the first half with another memorable goal, as he lofted a cross into the box for Luke Peperak, a freshman and Pittsburgh native, who headed the ball into the back of the net to give his team a 2-0 advantage ahead of the halftime break.

But the Brooklyn native wasn’t done, as he also had a hand in one of the Panthers’ three second-half goals. That goal came in the 69th minute and was scored by Filip Mirkovic, and the ball found its way to the Serbian midfielder thanks to Dexter. The goal was the fourth of five unanswered scores from the Panthers.

All told, Dexter has five goals and five assists this season, and he has thrived despite the challenges of playing in a season cleaved in two by the COVID-19 pandemic. Neither of Dexter’s totals are career highs, as he had six goals in 2017 and six assists in 2019, but his 15 points represent a personal best. And the Panthers forward has never played more efficiently, as he accrued those 15 points in a career-low 1,199 minutes and 15 games.

Considering Dexter’s performance late in the season and his status as a senior, Pitt head coach Jay Vidovich will likely look to him as an on-field leader for the top-ranked Panthers as they wade through the most consequential postseason in program history. Pitt is set to face Clemson in the ACC championship on Saturday at 7 p.m. The winner will earn an automatic bid for the NCAA tournament.