Feb. 8, 2008
SANTA CLARA, Calif. - Santa Clara women's soccer head coach Jerry Smith revealed his 2008 recruiting class Friday as he announced the signing of six student-athletes to national letters of intent. The six student-athletes will attend Santa Clara University in the fall of 2008.
"I'm very excited about our 2008 recruiting class," said Smith. "The class of six student-athletes will bring a nice combination of experience, including youth national team experience, athleticism and versatility to our team. Each one of them will be vying for playing time and starting positions as soon as this fall. The combination of these six recruits and the return of the five players that red-shirted this past fall will make a big difference come next fall. We're all looking forward to having a roster full of talent."
2008 Santa Clara Recruiting Class
|Player||Pos.||Ht.||Hometown (High School)|
|Margueritte Aozasa||MF||5-6||Mountain View, Calif. (Los Altos)|
|Bianca Henninger||GK||5-6||Los Gatos, Calif. (Archbishop Mitty)|
|Jenny LaPonte||MF/D||5-3.5||Castro Valley, Calif. (Castro Valley HS)|
|Kathleen Matthew||MF||5-5||Walnut Creek, Calif. (Las Lomas HS)|
|Bridgett Miller||F/MF||5-6||Los Angeles, Calif. (The Archer School for Girls)|
|Lindsay Wicher||D||5-9||Yorktown, Va. (Gratton HS)|
Mountain View, Calif. (Los Altos HS)
Coach Smith on Aozasa: "Margueritte is a natural leader and one of the most tactically aware players I've seen at the youth level. She is a very complete player, which is characteristic of our central midfield players."
Aozasa played an integral role in Los Altos' CCS Championship and undefeated league season in 2007. As a junior, she helped head her team to the CCS quarterfinals. For her efforts, she received SCVAL Junior of the Year honors. Aozasa has captained the MVLA Mercury since 1999 and has led the team to three State Cup Championships, regional finals and four Mustang stampede Classic Championships. She has been a member of the Cal-North State Team since 2004, Region IV team from 2004-06 and a member of the U16 national pool.
Los Gatos, Calif. (Archbishop Mitty)
Coach Smith on Henninger: "Bianca has been the top goalkeeper in the country for her age group for several years. Like many of the top keepers today, Bianca is very comfortable with the ball at her feet as well as in her hands. Her distribution skills in addition to her ability to keep the ball out of the net will have an immediate impact on our team."
Henninger comes to Santa Clara as a member of Archbishop Mitty 2006 and 2007 WCAL Division II Championship team. This season, Henninger has helped her team to a 10-0-4 record thus far and the round robin championship in WCAL play. In 2006, Henninger received San Jose Mercury News Sophomore of the Year and first team honors, as well as WCAL First Team accolades. She has also played club soccer from the De Anza Strykers and aided the team to three State Cup finals. Henninger has also been a member of the U15-U18 National teams and received Parade Magazine and NSCAA Youth All-America honors.
Castro Valley, Calif. (Castro Valley HS)
Coach Smith on LaPonte: "Jenny is one of the toughest competitors I've ever come across. Additionally, she has a very rare combination of speed and endurance which is invaluable in our sport. Jenny will compete for a playing time at outside back and winger."
A two-time high school All-American, LaPonte led the Trojans to their first No. 1 seed in school history and the Hayward Area Athletic League title in 2007. For her efforts on the field, LaPonte received all-league first team honors. LaPonte has been a member of the youth national teams playing with the U14-U17 squads. She also has played for the state and regional U14-U16 teams. LaPonte is also a member of the MVLA Mercury, whose U17 group were Cal North State Cup finalists.
Walnut Creek, Calif. (Las Lomas HS)
Coach Smith on Matthew: "Kathleen is a very fast outside back with outstanding one vs. one defensive skills. She is a very determined defender and will add great energy going forward. She will compete for playing time at right back."
A two-time Las Lomas MVP, Matthew received First Team All-DFAL honors in 2007 and was a DFAL Co-MVP honors in 2006. She also played five years on the Danville Mustang Fury club team where she received 2006 NSCAA/adidas Youth All-America honors. In 2006, Matthew was also a member of the ODP Region IV team as well as the Cal-North ODP State team for the 2005-06 and 2006-07 seasons.
Los Angeles, Calif. (The Archer School for Girls)
Coach Smith on Miller: "Bridgett is an athletic and versatile player who will compete for playing time in our front line."
Miller joins the Broncos after three successful seasons as The Archer School's team leading scorer and play maker. She captained her squad as a junior and senior, and received team MVP honors in 2007. As a junior, Miller also received CIF First Team All-League honors. As a sophomore, she was recognized on the second team. A member of the USYS National Champion Eagles GU19 Premier team, she helped the team to a second place finish in the fall.
Yorktown, Va. (Gratton HS)
Coach Smith on Wicher: "Lindsey is a naturally left footed player who is a great goal scorer. She will compete for playing time at left back and left wing."
Wicher, the lone non-California in the Broncos 2008 recruiting class, comes to the Mission Campus after helping Gratton High to two regional appearances. A three-time first team all-district selection, Wicher has also earned second team all-region, two first team all-region honors and one first team all-state accolades. Wicher captained her team for three seasons and earned team MVP honors in two of those seasons. She is also a two-time Daily Press All-Star. In 2007, Wicher received Daily Press Player of the Year honors and was named to the NSCAA/adidas All-South Region team. Wicher was also a member of the 2005 and 2007 Richmond Strikers Virginia State championship team. She helped the Strikers to the National semifinals in 2007.