Pilots are in no hurry to rush seniors off field
- Cliff Pfenning
- Portland Tribune - Sports
Women's recruiting expected to produce strong crop of newcomers
The Portland Pilots, who celebrated their NCAA women's soccer championship at the White House on Monday, are in the process of graduating six seniors, including five starters.
The school has been collecting national letters of intent from incoming freshmen, both men and women, but it isn't in a hurry to say who has signed.
'No one is too worried about that,' sports information director Loren Wolgemuth says. 'There's no real rush.'
Graduating seniors include forward Emily Patterson, midfielders Erin Misaki, Betsy Barr and Valerie Fletcher, defender Lauren Orlandos, and goalkeeper Lauren Arase.
Orlandos, Barr and Misaki were selected in the first two rounds of the Women's United Soccer Association draft.
Pilot coaches have one big reason to relax Ñ their star player, forward Christine Sinclair, has two more seasons of eligibility remaining. Sinclair, who scored 26 goals last season, was named the national player of the year after leading UP to a 2-1 victory over defending champion Santa Clara in the NCAA final.
Portland also returns forward Wanda Rozwadowska and key midfielder Lindsey Huie, who combined to score 10 goals and dish out 12 assists. Defenders Imani Dorsey, Kristen Rogers and Kristen Moore also return.
Frequent substitutes Rebekah Patrick, Kelsy Hollenbeck and Colleen Salisbury will be back, along with goalkeeper Kim Head, who would be the lone returning player from an Oregon high school.
The offense is likely to get stronger if forward Angela Woznuk of El Cajon, Calif., signs on as part of a banner recruiting class.
Woznuk was one of the youngest members of the U.S.
under-19 squad that won the World Championships last year. Woznuk was a second-half substitute in the championship match.
The Pilots' other prized recruit could be defender Stephanie Lopez of Elk Grove, Calif., who was named to the U.S. under-19 team.
Goalkeeper Cori Alexander, who helped Pleasanton, Calif., win the national U-17 club title last year, has been identified as heading to Portland. She was a national first-team pick by Student Sports magazine.
Portland's roster next season is likely to have as few as three seniors: Rozwadowska, Dorsey and midfielder Jennifer Bosa.
The Pilot men will be looking to replace star Nate Jaqua, who was selected third in the Major League Soccer draft. Portland's returnees include Alejandro Salazar, who was named to the freshman All-America team by Soccer America magazine.
PSU WOMEN: The Vikings, coming off a 13-win season, are hoping to get younger and better. Their star signee is Sophia Mundy of Houston. Mundy scored 19 goals as a senior and was in the Olympic Development Program in her region.
The Vikings, who return Big Sky Conference co-MVP Katie Miyake, also signed midfielder Katie Schoene of Seattle and defender Kara Norris of Tualatin, which was second in the state.
PSU has scheduled a series of games, including three contests on the Nike World Campus, in April as part of its preparation for the fall season.