SANTA CLARA, Calif. – For the third time in as many years, Santa Clara women's soccer has a player on the MAC Hermann Award Watch List. Junior captain Julie Johnston is one of 38 NCAA Division I women's soccer players to be selected by the Missouri Athletic Club. Johnston joins Lindsi Lisonbee of BYU and Michelle Pao of Pepperdine as the only players in the West Coast Conference to be on the 2012 list.
Santa Clara returns to the field on Fri., Oct. 12 at 7 p.m. vs. LMU in the WCC home-opener for the Broncos. On Sun., Oct. 14 Santa Clara will travel to No. 17 Pepperdine to take on a Waves team whose only loss in 2011, in the regular season, came at Buck Shaw.
"I think Julie is the total package and you have to be exceptional in one or more areas to be on that list," said Santa Clara head coach Jerry Smith, in his 26th season leading the Broncos. "You're talking about the best players in the country and Julie continues to showcase herself as one of the best. In Julie's case she attacks well and impacts scoring while also defending really well and being a great leader. She's the total package."
"It is truly an honor to be named among some of the best players in college and such a special feeling having others recognize your hard work," said Johnston. "I think this means more to me now because, as an upperclassman, I feel my team expects more from me and I am willing to do anything I can in games to help us reach our ultimate goal. I couldn't be more excited to see my hard work pay off."
Previous Santa Clara players to win the award include Mandy Clemens in 1999 and Aly Wagner in 2002.
Johnston missed the first seven games of the season for Santa Clara this year as she was leading the U.S. U-20 national team to a World Cup victory in Japan. Johnston, captain of the U.S. squad, was also awarded the Bronze Ball as the third most impactful player in the tournament. Even more impressive was the fact that she played center back and awards usually go to attacking players.
In her six games back on the Mission campus, Johnston has made her presence felt on and off the field for the Broncos. Santa Clara is 4-0-2 in Johnston's six games have has outscored opponents 12-5 and scored three or more goals three times. In the seven games while Johnston was in Japan the Broncos scored just nine goals and only scored more than one once.
Johnston is tied for second on the team with three goals scored and has two game-winners, including the lone goal in an overtime win vs. CSU Northridge on Sept. 21. She also has two assists which is also tied for second on the Bronco team and her eight points is tied for tops on the roster.