ANDERSON, S.C. – Anderson head women’s soccer coach Samar Azem has announced the addition of 11 new student-athletes to the 2013 squad. The talented class of newcomers includes five players that started at the Elite Clubs National League Level, three signees that competed at the Olympic Development Program state level and regional pool, as well as one that competed internationally.
The class of newcomers includes two midfielders, a pair of forwards, three defenders, two defender/midfielders, a forward/midfielder and a goalkeeper.
“I’m incredibly excited to present our 2013 incoming group and to have them here in the fall,” said Azem. “We’ve been working on this class for over 18 months and we feel as though we have recruited young ladies that are a fantastic fit for our needs as a program and our mission as an institution. Each player is excited about our program’s core values, the standards we set for ourselves and the direction we are taking our program. They invested in it the moment they committed to us.”
Women’s Soccer Signees
Position: Holding Midfielder
Club Team: Carlsbad Lightning
High School: Carlsbad High School
Hometown: Carlsbad, Calif.
Intended major: Kinesiology
A Carlsbad High School four-year letterwinner, Adkins anchored a midfield and back line that went undefeated in the league in 2012, as she led the Lancers to a league championship title. Additionally Adkin’s high school team finished as the CIF champions and semifinalists in the state.
Adkin’s versatility was poignant for the Carlsbad Lightning in the midfield and on her team’s back line as center back. She led the Lightning to the elite division of the Presidio League, where she served as team captain.
Azem on Adkins: “Savvy’s got great size and strength and is very technical on the ball. She will be a very strong presence on both set pieces and centrally. Her technique on the ball will be a pivotal part of our playmaking out of the midfield.”
Club Team: Lexington County Soccer Club 95 Elite
High School: South Aiken High School
Hometown: Aiken, S.C.
Intended major: Business
Gay comes to Anderson from the 95 elite Lexington Soccer Club where she led the team in goals scored in 2009 and assists in 2010. Alaina was selected as team captain the last three years, leading her team to first place in the South Carolina Challenge League. She was also elected as a South Carolina ODP State team member in 2008, 2009 and 2010.
Gay lettered at South Aiken, where she was a recipient of the Thoroughbred Award in 2010. Gay led the Thoroughbreds to a AAA Couth Carolina State Runner-Up finish in 2010 and a regional championship in 2012.
Azem on Gay: ““Alaina is a small player who is very quick off the ball. She will cause a lot of problems for defenders moving in and out of space in the attacking third and will give us depth and options in our attack.”
Position: Center Back
Club Team: FC Frederick
High School: Governor Thomas Johnson HS (Md.)/Hamilton HS (Ariz.)
Hometown: Frederick, Md.
Intended major: Communications
A midfielder and center back, Doll spent time in Arizona competing with the Sereno SC 95 club after competing with the Alliance FC team, where she saw her team’s success at the state championship level. Doll continued her top club training at FC Frederick after moving to the northeast in 2012.
At Hamilton High School in Arizona, Doll lead her team to the Arizona State 5A 1 Championships in 2010-2011 and was named third in the ESPN Rise National Rankings. Doll was also selected to the Arizona State ODP Team in 2010-2011 and was invited to the ODP Region 4 Pool.
Azem on Doll: “Corinne is a tough and competitive center back. She understands shape and space as a patient and smart defender. She will bring a big presence in the back line and will give us the ability to play out of the back at ease.”
Position: Attacking Midfield
Previous School: Cleveland State University
Hometown: Rockford, Mich.
Intended major: Marketing and Graphic Design
Cowan comes to Anderson after spending the last two years at NCAA D-I Cleveland State, where she competed in 13 matches for the Vikings. Prior to Cleveland State, Cowan played for the Grand Rapids Crew Juniors, where her team competed at the Super Y National Championship.
She attended Rockford High School, where she captained her team to the district championship in both 2007 and 2008. Cowan was nominated as an all-district second- team player in 2009 and 2010 and received the All-Conference Sportsmanship Player of the Year following her senior season.
Azem on Cowan: ““Emily brings with her a wealth of experience. She is very technical on the ball with a tenacity for finishing. Her comfort and creativity with the ball will cause problems for defenders in the midfield and especially in the final third.”
Club Team: Internationals SC ECNL U18
High School: Brecksville-Broadview Heights High School
Hometown: Brecksville, Ohio
Intended major: Kinesiology
Kubiak is a standout who played alongside current Trojan Olivia Scalzitti. She anchored a backline that won the Southwestern Conference Championship in 2011 and 2012. As a defender she tallied six goals, 12 assists and anchored a backline that garnered 31 shutouts during her career. Kubiak also competed for the Cleveland Internationals ECNL squad, which finished as the 2011 Super Y League Champions and the 2012 Ohio North State Cup Champions.
Azem on Kubiak: ““Jaclyn is a strong, attacking left back. She comes out of the back very well with effective services in the box. She will be a handful for defenders and will make it tough for attacking players to get past her one-on-one.”
Position: Outside Defender
Club Team: Orlando City Youth Soccer
High School: Orangewood Christian School
Hometown: Lake Mary, Fla.
Intended major: Physical Therapy/ Education
Taylor comes to the Trojans after a strong career on Florida’s Orlando City Youth Soccer squad where her team won the U-17 state championship. She also brings international experience after competing for the Women’s United States National Deaf Team. The squad won gold for the United States at the Deaf World Cup Championships in 2012.
Taylor lettered at Orangewood Christian School where she was named First-Team All-District from 2009-2013, as well as the Florida All-Star South Team.
Azem on Taylor: “Maddie is a very athletic right back who is able to make good, simple decisions under pressure. She loves to attack out of the back with a lot of pace and has a very solid understanding of shape in the backline. She will be a very big asset for us on the channels.”
Position: Center Back
Club Team: Orlando City Youth Soccer
High School: Winter Springs High School
Hometown: Winter Springs, Fla.
Intended major: Biology
Kovach comes to AU after competing at Winter Springs High School, where she led her team to the 2009 regional championship. She received the 2009 Coach’s Award, 2010 Most Valuable Player Award and was named 2011 First-Team All-Conference.
Kovach also competed for the Orlando City Youth Soccer ECNL squad prior to suffering a season-ending injury.
Azem on Kovach: “Nicole is a very athletic center back with good size and speed. She is a diverse player in the back and will give us an option as a center back or outside back and can attack out of the back which will cause a lot of problems for teams.”
Position: Center Back/Center Midfielder
Club Team: CESA ECNL
High School: Mauldin High School
Hometown: Simpsonville, S.C.
Intended Major: Biology
Dolan, a CESA ECNL team captain, joins the program after a decorated career with her Carolina Elite Soccer Association ECNL squad and at Mauldin High School. She won two championships - the first at Mauldin in 2011 when the team won the South Carolina High School State AAAA Championships. In 2012, Dolan lead her team to the U.S. Youth Soccer Region III Championship - earning her team the bronze medal. Dolan’s club team also claimed back-to-back state championships in 2010 and 2011, as well. She also spent time on the 95 State ODP Team.
Azem on Dolan: “Tera has enjoyed considerable success with her club team winning the regional championship. She is a versatile and tenacious player that will make it very difficult for players to penetrate centrally. We will be able to utilize her in both our backline and right in front of our center backs.”
Club Team: CESA ECNL
High School: Northwestern High School
Hometown: Rock Hill, S.C.
Intended Major: Special Education
Moore was a four-year letter-winner and two-year captain at Northwestern High School. She was a pivotal part of the Trojans’ success and has been recognized for her efforts regionally and within the state. Moore’s strongest season at Northwestern came in 2011-2012, when she scored 14 goals and dished out nine assists. She was selected to the All-Region team for the past three years and was named the Trojans’ Offensive Player of the year in 2011. Additionally, Moore was selected to the National Soccer Coaches Association of America’s All-Academic team for the past three years.
Moore comes to Anderson from one of the top club backgrounds in the state and within the region. She played club soccer for Andrew Hyslop on the CESA ECNL U18 squad. Moore’s team won the United States Youth Soccer Regional III championship in 2012 and moved on to the National Championship in the summer of 2012. Additionally, she led her team to a South Carolina State championship win in 2011.
Azem on Moore: “Helena comes to us from a very successful playing background. She knows what winning takes. Her athleticism and ability to play simply and smartly will cause a lot of problems for defenders in the attacking third. She’s a tough player to defend with a lot of pace behind her and is dynamic enough to attack space and see seams very well.”
Position: Forward/Outside Midfielder
Club Team: Carlsbad Lightning Soccer Club
High School: Mission Hills High School
Hometown: San Marcos, Calif.
Intended Major: Psychology
Perez comes to AU with Carlsbad Lightning teammate Savannah Adkins. Perez, a fast paced forward, assisted her team with the U19 Premier Elite Division Presidio League.
She also served as team captain as a forward at Mission Hills High School.
Azem on Perez: “Perez is another player that will bring a lot of speed to the channels. We plan on utilizing her ability to get behind defenders very quickly and her very high work ethic to run defenders down and create a lot of opportunities for us in the attacking third.”
Club Team: Andromeda FC
High School: Celina High School
Hometown: Celina, Texas
Intended Major: Art Education
Lancaster comes to Anderson from Celina High School in Texas. Celina High School does not field a women’s soccer team, so Lancaster grew and learned under top coaches in the area and with Andromeda FC.
In her last two seasons in goal her opponents were shut out for 28 consecutive games.
Azem on Lancaster: ““Sadie is a very aggressive goalkeeper that comes off her line with a strong presence. She will not only add depth to our solid goalkeeping unit but will also bring in a level of competitiveness with her tenacity off the goal line.”
“Our returning players have been working hard to create a perennially-successful program and we are excited about the addition of these young women to the core we have returning,” added Azem. “Every player we are bringing in will serve a specific purpose and our class will give us quality depth. We have top players that will make an impact right away. The direction of our program is very positive right now. We know how competitive our schedule and conference is and we have a lot of work ahead of us. But the future is very bright.”
The 2012 edition of Anderson women’s soccer earned the No. 5 seed in the South Atlantic Conference Tournament and tallied a school-record 10 shutouts on the season, before falling to fourth-seeded Catawba in the SAC Tournament quarterfinals.