SFA Announces Soccer Signings
Feb. 4, 2009
NACOGDOCHES, Texas - The Stephen F. Austin Ladyjack soccer program added another signee to its 2009 class on Thursday, Feb. 19, bringing the total to 15 athletes, the largest signing class for SFA since the program began in 1995. The group includes 11 prep recruits and four collegiate transfers who joined the program at the start of the spring semester.
The 2009 class will fill the vacancies created by the graduation of six seniors from last year's team and three additional off-season departures.
"This is the biggest class we have ever signed," said SFA head coach George Van Linder. "There are actually some more players out there we can't announce yet."
Two of the four transfers come to SFA from Big 12 members Baylor and Oklahoma, while the other two have made the jump from two-year colleges -- Tyler Junior College and Navarro College.
"I've always been a bit of a magnet for transfers in my coaching career," Van Linder said. "But what we did this January was unheard-of, with four players coming in from different schools to be a part of our program. I am very excited about what these players can do for us, and I think they have already made an impact on our team by being here."
Twelve of the 14 players in the 2009 class are Texans, and all boast impressive club soccer resumes. Several have garnered Olympic Development Program experience.
"We are proud to have players from the top clubs in Austin, Dallas and Houston," Van Linder said. "We used to say we were the best-kept secret in college soccer, but word seems to have spread. Even more elite players are wanting to call SFA home."
This is the first full signing class for Van Linder's staff. The former Baylor head coach took over the SFA program in late February of 2008.
"A lot of the credit for this class goes to my assistants, Kelli Partridge and Trae Manny," Van Linder said, "as well as our athletic department leadership, specifically Mr. Matt Fenley (SFA Associate AD for NCAA Compliance). We had to replace six quality seniors, and we had to make our team a bit bigger with our numbers. We certainly did that, and we feel like we brought players in who will help us in some specific areas where we needed to get better."
Below is a list of 2009 signings by the Stephen F. Austin Ladyjack soccer program. The list will be updated as athletes are added.
Laura Sadler Midfielder/Forward Coppell, Texas (Coppell)
Abby Susman Midfielder Tulsa, Oklahoma (Cascia Hall Prep)
Jordan Payne Midfielder/Forward Southlake, Texas (Carroll)
Jess Brown Midfielder College Station, Texas (A&M Consolidated)
Chelsea Smith Midfielder/Forward Austin, Texas (Cedar Park)
Lacey Leitz Defender Montgomery, Texas (Montgomery)
Laura Moritz Midfielder Southlake, Texas (Carroll)
Morgan Ray Forward/Midfielder Missouri City, Texas (Elkins)
Becky Johnson Forward Bakersfield, Calif. (Liberty)
Rachael Stelly Goalkeeper Richardson, Texas (Plano East)
Wallis Young Midfielder/Defender Sophomore (Transfer) Duncanville, Texas (Baylor)
Jordan King Defender Sophomore (Transfer) McKinney, Texas (Oklahoma)
Lisa Gonzalez Forward Junior (Transfer) La Porte, Texas (Navarro College)
-- SFA --