Week 11 Wrap

Paige Hayward (Photo Credit: John Posey)

It was a topsy-turvy week this week to say the least, with some vital wins tempered by a couple of brutal losses. Julia De Angelis, Kristy Helmers and Kate Swartwout saw their freshman seasons end with tournament losses, whilst Laura Johns and Jess Coates rounded out their college careers this week as their teams failed to reach conference tournaments. On the other side, Beattie Goad and Stanford are in pole position for a conference title, whilst Demi Koulizakis, Paige Hayward and Isabel Hodgson enjoyed crucial victories.

The undoubted star of the week was Paige Hayward. With Texas Southern needing a win over in-state rival Prairie View A&M in their final league game to secure second place, the junior came up huge for the Tigers. The striker scored both goals for Texas Southern, including a penalty, to ensure that her team would finish in second place and earn a favourable draw for the SWAC conference tournament quarterfinals, where they will play Prairie View A&M again in the 2-7 matchup, with Prairie View A&M hosting the tournament.

Laura Johns’ impact with Massachusetts has been reduced in her senior season after winning the 2015 College Matildas Breakout Player Of The Year, but the South Australian showed just what she could offer in her final college game. Although the Minutewomen lost 3-1 to Dayton in their final game of the season, that goal came courtesy of Laura as she wrapped up her college career in the best way possible on a personal level, if not from a results level.

It was a mixed week for the Aussies in the Pac-12, to say the least. Teagan Micah and UCLA lost both their games this weekend to drop out of conference title contention, but one of those losses came at the hands of Colorado. Whilst Colorado were able to get that win over UCLA, they lost 3-0 to Lulu Pullar and USC, but neither Isobel Dalton nor Kahlia Hogg played any minutes all weekend. It was a better weekend for Beattie Goad and Stanford, though. Their trip south to play the two Arizona schools saw them come away with a pair of wins to take a two-point lead at the top of the Pac-12 table with one game to play.

In an Aussie v Aussie matchup in the Southern Conference quarterfinals, it was Isabel Hodgson and East Tennessee State who got the chocolates over Kate Swartwout and Western Carolina. East Tennessee State opened the scoring on the 20 minute mark through Molly Collinson who finished off some neat play from Irina Brutsch and Eleonora Goldoni. Western Carolina equalised through a penalty in the 73rd minute, but East Tennessee State earned the winner less than 3 minutes later. Isabel Hodgson tallied a single shot, but was heavily involved in the attack throughout the game, opening up several opportunities for the Buccaneers. Meanwhile, Kate Swartwout was solid in defence for the 47 minutes that she played off the bench for the Catamounts.

Demi Koulizakis has been used sparingly off the bench for the most part this season, but in a must-win game against nationally ranked Oklahoma, the Aussie freshman earned a rare start. Koulizakis’ performance must have improved the Texas Tech coaching staff as the Sydneysider saw 69 minutes of playing time in a 1-0 overtime win that saw the Red Raiders steal a Big 12 tournament spot from Monique Iannella and Texas.

This week saw us say goodbye to Nicholls State legend Jess Coates after the Colonels went down 3-0 to Southeastern Louisiana in a game that they had to win to reach the Southland Conference tournament and keep their season alive. Jess finishes her college career as Nicholls State’s all-time assists leader with 19 in 4 seasons, and was also a Senior CLASS Award nominee in her shortened senior season in 2015. Jess also won the 2014 College Matildas Midfielder Of The Year and was also 2nd in the Player Of The Year award in 2014.

Player Of The Year Points:

3: Paige Hayward (Texas Southern)
2: Georgia Rowntree (Wyoming)
1: Laura Johns (Massachusetts)

Complete Results:

Massachusetts (Laura Johns)

This week: lost 2-1 to Saint Joseph’s; lost 3-1 to Dayton

Laura Johns started in both games this weekend, playing 38 minutes against Saint Joseph’s and 56 minutes against Dayton. Despite the loss against Dayton, Laura rounded off her college career with a goal in her final game.

UCLA (Teagan Micah)

This week: lost 1-0 to Colorado; lost 2-0 to Utah

Teagan Micah played two complete games this week, making three saves against Colorado and five saves against Utah.

Colorado (Isobel Dalton, Kahlia Hogg)

This week: defeated UCLA 1-0; lost 3-0 to USC

Neither Isobel Dalton nor Kahlia Hogg saw any playing time for Colorado this weekend.

Murray State (Nyomi Devine, Jade Horcicka, Harriet Withers)

This week: drew 0-0 with Austin Peay

Harriet Withers had six shots for Murray State with two on target as the striker played all 110 minutes. Nyomi Devine continued to sit out through injury, whilst Jade Horcicka also did not feature against Austin Peay.

LSU (Caitlin Cantrill)

This week: lost 2-0 to Arkansas

Caitlin Cantrill came off the bench to play 36 minutes in the loss to Arkansas.

Southeast Missouri State (Maddy Cornell, Siena Senatore)

This week: defeated Tennessee-Martin 4-1

Maddy Cornell came off the bench to play 25 minutes, whilst Siena Senatore played 28 minutes as a substitute.

USC (Lulu Pullar)

This week: drew 1-1 with Utah; defeated Colorado 3-0

Lulu Pullar did not feature against Utah, but came off the bench to play the final five minutes against Colorado.

Stanford (Beattie Goad)

This week: defeated Arizona 4-0; defeated Arizona State 2-1

Beattie Goad came off the bench to play 15 minutes in both games this week, registering a shot on target in the win over Arizona.

Pacific (Ellie Papalexiou)

This week: lost 2-1 to San Diego; lost to BYU 4-0

Ellie Papalexiou missed this week due to injury.

Wyoming (Alisha Bass, Annika Clayton, Jessie Gentle, Georgia Rowntree, Candace Sciberras)

This week: defeated Colorado State 1-0

Alisha Bass had four shots, of which three were on target, in 74 minutes of action against Colorado State. Georgia Rowntree played all 90 minutes and saved all five shots that came her way. Annika Clayton and Jessie Gentle both had short stints off the bench, whilst Candace Sciberras missed out through injury.

Fairleigh Dickinson (Sam Roff)

This week: defeated Long Island-Brooklyn 4-2; lost 2-1 to Mount St. Mary’s

Sam Roff started both games and played the full 90 minutes on both occasions this week, managing to register a shot against Long Island-Brooklyn.

Nicholls State (Jess Coates, Kristy Helmers)

This week: lost 3-0 to Southeastern Louisiana

Kristy Helmers tallied a single shot in 45 minutes of action, whilst Jess Coates had two shots on target in 84 minutes in what would be her final college game.

Texas (Monique Iannella)

This week: lost 3-2 to TCU

Monique Iannella did not feature this week as Texas’ season came to an end with the loss to TCU.

Texas Southern (Paige Hayward)

This week: defeated Prairie View A&M 2-0

Paige Hayward scored both goals for the Tigers, including one from the spot, from seven shots in a complete game effort.

Texas Tech (Demi Koulizakis)

This week: defeated Oklahoma 1-0 (OT)

Demi Koulizakis managed a rare start for Texas Tech and played 69 of the 103 minutes in the overtime win, tallying a shot from midfield.

San Francisco (Price Keogh)

This week: lost 1-0 to Portland; defeated Gonzaga 2-1

Price Keogh did not feature for San Francisco this week.

East Tennessee State (Isabel Hodgson)

This week: defeated Western Carolina 2-1

Isabel Hodgson played 75 minutes in the win, tallying a shot on target in the process.

Western Carolina (Kate Swartwout)

This week: lost 2-1 to East Tennessee State

Kate Swartwout came off the bench to play 75 minutes in defence in the tight quarterfinal loss.

Albany (Claire Urquhart)

This week: defeated New Hampshire 1-0

Claire Urquhart did not feature for Albany in their conference tournament semi-final victory.

Indiana (Julia De Angelis)

This week: lost 3-1 to Minnesota

Julia De Angelis came off the bench to play 13 minutes as Indiana’s season ended with a quarter-final loss to Minnesota.


Week 8 Wrap

This week saw some thrilling games, plenty of goals from Aussies, and a huge upset win in the Sun Belt for one Aussie that really shook things up in that particular conference. Colorado kept their perfect conference record intact, but Kahlia Hogg unfortunately went down injured early in the Buffaloes’ first match of the weekend and did not return for their second game.

Stanford v UCLA had all the makings of an absolute heartstopper on paper, and the game didn’t disappoint as fans were treated to an overtime thriller. With both teams dropping points in their first games of the weekend, the pressure was on to secure a result and keep pace with the leaders in the Pac-12. Amber Munerlyn opened the scoring for UCLA in the 12th minute, but recent US National Team call-up Andi Sullivan equalised just 90 seconds later. Michelle Xiao put Stanford ahead just after the hour mark, but Canadian Olympian Jessie Fleming would equalize for UCLA yet again just 4 minutes from time. Teagan Micah made six saves for UCLA, but in the end Beattie Goad would be the Aussie celebrating as Maddie Bauer managed to tuck home the winner for Stanford after a scramble from a corner. The win keeps Stanford just 3 points off the pace in the Pac-12, whilst UCLA sit 5 points off leaders Colorado.

Murray State needed to win twice this weekend to keep themselves atop the Ohio Valley Conference standings, and with a lot of help from Harriet Withers and Nyomi Devine, they did exactly that. Nyomi tallied the assist on the Racers’ only goal in their 1-0 win over Tennessee Tech, before Harriet Withers whipped home a free kick to put Murray State ahead against Eastern Kentucky, with the Racers going on to win 3-0.

Wyoming came into the weekend sitting just shy of .500, with a 5-6-1 mark. That all changed with two victories that took the Cowgirls to a 7-6-1 record and extended their winning streak to three games. Alisha Bass was the star amongst the five Aussies in Laramie. Playing in a more advanced role than her usual defensive position, Alisha tallied an assist in a 4-2 win over Air Force, and then headed home a goal in a 2-0 win over Colorado College as Wyoming moved up to 7th in the Mountain West Conference.

South Alabama had not lost a conference game in 3 seasons, with 33 opponents coming and going in that time. Enter Alexandra Huynh and Troy. In their only game of the week, the Trojans scored in the 7th minute and then hung on for dear life as South Alabama unleashed 13 shots. But Alexandra and the Troy defence ensured that only 5 of those shots would end up on target, and with Mikki Lewis resembling a brick wall in front of the net, Troy emerged with a massive upset win against their in-state rivals. The win also lifted Troy off the bottom of the Sun Belt standings, and they now sit just two points behind a logjam of six teams tied for 3rd.

Paige Hayward has been at the top of her game for most of the season so far, and little changed in a pair of wins for Texas Southern. Paige wrapped up the scoring on both occasions for the Tigers, who defeated Mississippi Valley State 3-1 before knocking off Alcorn State 3-0 in their second game of the week to keep pace with Howard at the top of the Southwestern Athletic Conference standings.

Player Of The Year Points:

3: Alisha Bass (Wyoming)
2: Paige Hayward (Texas Southern)
1: Harriet Withers (Murray State)

Complete Results:

Massachusetts (Laura Johns)

This week: lost 2-1 to George Mason (OT); lost 2-0 to George Washington

Laura Johns did not feature against George Mason, but played 27 minutes off the bench against George Washington.

Colorado (Isobel Dalton, Kahlia Hogg)

This week: defeated Oregon 3-1; defeated Oregon State 3-0

Kahlia Hogg was forced off after just 5 minutes against Oregon and did not return for the game against Oregon State. Isobel Dalton did not feature against Oregon, but came off the bench to play 27 minutes in the win over Oregon State.

Albany (Claire Urquhart)

This week: defeated Binghamton 1-0; drew 2-2 with Hartford

Claire Urquhart did not feature for Albany in either game this week.

Stanford (Beattie Goad)

This week: lost 3-0 to USC; defeated UCLA 3-2 (OT)

Beattie Goad started both games for Stanford this week, playing 83 minutes against USC and 56 minutes in the win over UCLA.

Indiana (Julia De Angelis)

This week: drew 1-1 with Penn State; drew 2-2 with Rutgers

Julia De Angelis started both games for Indiana this week, with her minutes increasing markedly this week as the freshman continues to make progress since her return from injury.

USC (Lulu Pullar)

This week: defeated Stanford 3-0; lost 1-0 to California

Lulu Pullar did not feature for USC this week.

LSU (Caitlin Cantill)

This week: lost 3-1 to Tennessee; lost 3-0 to Georgia

Caitlin Cantrill did not play against Tennessee, but came off the bench against Georgia to play part of the first half and the entire second half.

UCLA (Teagan Micah)

This week: drew 1-1 with California; lost 3-2 to Stanford (OT)

Teagan Micah played two complete games for UCLA this week, making five saves against California and six saves in the loss to Stanford.

Murray State (Nyomi Devine, Jade Horcicka, Harriet Withers)

This week: defeated Tennessee Tech 1-0; defeated Eastern Kentucky 3-0

Nyomi Devine played two complete games this week, and also tallied an assist on the only goal in the win over Tennessee Tech. Harriet Withers played 66 minutes against Tennessee Tech, tallying four shots, before registering a superb goal from a free kick as well as an assist against Eastern Kentucky.

Wyoming (Alisha Bass, Annika Clayton, Jessie Gentle, Georgia Rowntree, Candace Sciberras)

This week: defeated Air Force 4-2; defeated Colorado College 2-0

Georgia Rowntree played two complete games this week, but made just the one save, against Colorado College. Alisha Bass played 82 minutes against Air Force, tallying an assist on Summer Halle’s hat-trick goal, before heading home a goal of her own against Colorado College in a 75 minute effort. Annika Clayton tallied an assist against Air Force on the game-tying goal, and played 41 minutes off the bench against Colorado College in her return from a concussion sustained a few weeks ago. Jessie Gentle came off the bench in both games, playing 15 minutes on each occasion.

Texas Tech (Demi Koulizakis)

This week: lost 1-0 to Oklahoma State; lost 1-0 to Baylor

Demi Koulizakis did not feature for Texas Tech in either game this week.

East Tennessee State (Isabel Hodgson)

This week: defeated UNC Greensboro 1-0; defeated VMI 3-0

Isabel Hodgson played 74 minutes against UNC Greensboro, registering two shots. Isabel came off the bench on Senior Day against VMI, playing 67 minutes and setting up Thomai Vardali for East Tennessee State’s third goal.

Drexel (Emma Heckenberg)

This week: defeated College of Charleston 3-0; drew 1-1 with UNC Wilmington

Emma Heckenberg started both games for Drexel this week, playing 82 minutes against College of Charleston and 65 minutes against UNC Wilmington.

Western Carolina (Kate Swartwout)

This week: defeated VMI 1-0; lost 1-0 to UNC Greensboro

Kate Swartwout started both games for Western Carolina this week as the Catamounts split their games.

Hofstra (Emily Hulbert)

This week: defeated Elon 3-1; lost 1-0 to William & Mary

Emily Hulbert finally made her return from a foot injury sustained over a month ago, starting both games and playing a total of 107 minutes across the weekend.

Southeast Missouri State (Maddy Cornell, Siena Senatore)

This week: lost 2-1 to Jacksonville State (OT); drew 0-0 with Belmont

Maddy Cornell came off the bench in both games, playing 57 minutes against Jacksonville State and 43 minutes against Belmont, but Siena Senatore did not feature this week.

Nicholls State (Jess Coates, Kristy Helmers)

This week: lost 4-0 to McNeese State

Jess Coates and Kristy Helmers both started for Nicholls State. Jess played 79 minutes whilst Kristy put in a 50 minute shift.

Troy (Alexandra Huynh)

This week: defeated South Alabama 1-0

Alexandra Huynh played the full 90 minutes for Troy in a massive upset win over South Alabama.

Texas Southern (Paige Hayward)

This week: defeated Mississippi Valley State 3-1; defeated Alcorn State 3-0

Paige Hayward played 69 minutes against Mississippi Valley State, scoring Texas Southern’s third goal, before tallying the Tigers’ final goal against Alcorn State.

Texas (Monique Iannella)

This week: defeated Kansas State 2-0

Monique Iannella played the full 90 minutes for Texas in their victory, also tallying a shot.

Pacific (Ellie Papalexiou)

This week: lost 3-0 to Santa Clara; lost 1-0 to San Francisco

Ellie Papalexiou did not feature this week as she continues to recover from an injury.

San Francisco (Price Keogh)

This week: defeated Saint Mary’s 2-0; defeated Pacific 1-0

Price Keogh did not feature against Saint Mary’s, but played 54 minutes against Pacific, 6 more than her combined total minutes for the rest of the season.

Winthrop (Jai Jackson)

This week: lost 3-2 to Campbell

Jai Jackson started in defence for Winthrop and played all 102 minutes in the overtime loss.

Fairleigh Dickinson (Sam Roff)

This week: defeated Wagner 1-0

Sam Roff started for Wagner and played all 90 minutes in the win, tallying a shot.

Week 5 Wrap

It wasn’t the most eventful week for the Australians in college this week, but there were still a couple of players doing some great things. Isabel Hodgson was the undoubted star of the week, tallying goals and assists throughout the weekend. Elsewhere, Beattie Goad and Alex Huynh each made unexpected impacts on games.

Isabel Hodgson was the undoubted star of the week amongst the Australians. Bombing forward from her right back position, the South Australian tallied an assist in East Tennessee State’s 3-1 win over Alabama A&M, setting herself up for a huge performance in a 7-0 drubbing of South Carolina State. Isabel opened the scoring for the Buccaneers inside 20 minutes, and then tallied a pair of assists late on as East Tennessee State banged in one goal after another in what proved to be an absolute demolition job leading into conference play next week.

Alex Huynh has become a rock at the back for Troy this season, but a move up field almost paid dividends as the senior went agonisingly close to scoring her first career goal. Alex spent the first half playing in an attacking midfield role before reverting to a defensive role in Troy’s 3-0 win over Appalachian State, but tallied 4 shots in a 1-1 draw with Arkansas State, tallying two on target including a free kick that was denied by the fingertips of the goalkeeper.

Beattie Goad hasn’t seen much playing time since the opening weekend, but was moved back into the starting lineup for the first time in a month for top-ranked Stanford. Beattie played 86 minutes for the Cardinal as the top team in the RPI rankings knocked off Santa Clara 2-1 to remain undefeated at 7-0-1 for the season so far.

Player Of The Year Points;

3: Isabel Hodgson (East Tennessee State)
2: Alexandra Huynh (Troy)
1: Beattie Goad (Stanford)

Complete Results:

Massachusetts (Laura Johns)

This week: drew 0-0 with Brown; lost 3-0 to Providence

Laura Johns started against Brown and played 74 minutes, tallying a shot, before coming off the bench to play 34 minutes against Providence.

Indiana (Julia De Angelis)

This week: lost 1-0 to Northwestern; defeated Illinois 1-0 (OT)

Julia De Angelis started both games, playing 40 minutes and tallying a shot on target against Northwestern and following up with 39 minutes against Illinois.

San Francisco (Price Keogh)

This week: lost 4-1 to California; defeated UC Davis 1-0

Price Keogh came off the bench in both games, playing 17 minutes against California and 3 minutes against UC Davis.

Nicholls State (Jess Coates, Kristy Helmers)

This week: drew 0-0 with Lamar

Jess Coates and Kristy Helmers both started for Nicholls State, with Jess tallying three shots and Kristy one.

USC (Lulu Pullar)

This week: defeated Kansas 2-0

Lulu Pullar did not feature for USC this week.

UCLA (Teagan Micah)

This week: defeated Pepperdine 3-0; defeated Long Beach State 2-1

Teagan Micah played the complete 90 minutes in both games, making two saves in each game.

East Tennessee State (Isabel Hodgson)

This week: defeated Alabama A&M 3-1; defeated South Carolina State 7-0

Isabel Hodgson started both games, playing 65 minutes and registering an assist against Alabama A&M before scoring her first career goal against South Carolina State and also tallying another two assists in a 90 minute effort.

Pacific (Ellie Papalexiou)

This week: lost 2-1 to UC Davis

Ellie Papalexiou started for UC Davis, her 8th consecutive start.

Albany (Claire Urquhart)

This week: lost 3-1 to Dartmouth

Claire Urquhart did not feature for Albany this week.

Texas (Monique Iannella)

This week: defeated North Texas 1-0; defeated UC Santa Barbara 2-1

Monique Iannella returned to the starting lineup to play 90 minutes against North Texas, but did not feature against UC Santa Barbara.

Stanford (Beattie Goad)

This week: defeated Santa Clara 2-1

Beattie Goad returned to the starting lineup for the first time since the opening weekend, playing 86 minutes and tallying a shot.

Texas Tech (Demi Koulizakis)

This week: drew 1-1 with Loyola Marymount; defeated San Diego State 1-0

Demi Koulizakis came off the bench in both games, playing 18 minutes against Loyola Marymount and 2 minutes against San Diego State.

LSU (Caitlin Cantrill)

This week: defeated Ole Miss 3-0; defeated Lamar 4-0

Caitlin Cantrill did not feature for LSU against Ole Miss, but did come off the bench against Lamar.

Troy (Alexandra Huynh)

This week: defeated Appalachian State 3-0; drew 1-1 with Arkansas State

Alexandra Huynh started both games, playing 82 minutes against Appalachian State and a complete 110 minutes against Arkansas State, playing in a more advanced role in parts and tallying 4 shots, with two on target.

Iona (Kiri Dale)

This week: lost 4-2 to Siena

Kiri Dale started for Iona, playing all 90 minutes and tallying a shot on target.

Colorado (Isobel Dalton, Kahlia Hogg)

This week: defeated Denver 1-0 (OT)

Kahlia Hogg played the full 99 minutes, tallying a shot, but Isobel Dalton did not feature this week.

Western Carolina (Kate Swartwout)

This week: defeated Tennessee Tech 1-0 (OT)

Kate Swartwout once again started for Western Carolina this week.

Winthrop (Jai Jackson)

This week: lost 1-0 to Kennesaw State

Jai Jackson got a rare start for Winthrop, playing the full 90 minutes.

Fairleigh Dickinson (Sam Roff)

This week: lost 4-1 to Army

Sam Roff did not feature for Fairleigh Dickinson this week.

Hofstra (Emily Hulbert)

This week: defeated Fordham 2-1

Emily Hulbert did not feature for Hofstra this week.

Southeast Missouri State (Maddy Cornell, Siena Senatore)

This week: lost 1-0 to Missouri State

Siena Senatore got a start this week and played 71 minutes against Missouri State, whilst Maddy Cornell came off the bench to play 40 minutes.

Texas Southern (Paige Hayward)

This week: lost 7-0 to Oral Roberts

Paige Hayward started for Texas Southern, playing the full 90 minutes and taking 3 of Texas Southern’s five shots.

Drexel (Emma Heckenberg)

This week: drew 0-0 with Penn

Emma Heckenberg scored a rare start for Drexel, and played the entire 110 minutes in the overtime draw.

Week 1 Wrap

The first week of the college soccer season brought more than a bit of success for the Australians. Sam Roff, Caitlin Cantrill, Demi Koulizakis, Isobel Dalton, Kiri Dale, and Teagan Micah made their debuts, with Teagan being recognised by the Pac-12 for an excellent debut performance. Paige Hayward also picked up SWAC Offensive Player of the Week for an outstanding shift for Texas Southern against Texas A&M-Texarkana.

From an attacking standpoint, Jessie Gentle was the first Australian this season to have a tangible impact on a game, tallying an assist on Wyoming’s second goal as the Cowgirls won their opener 2-0 against Houston Baptist. Goalkeeper Georgia Rowntree played all 90 minutes in keeping a clean sheet, with Alisha Bass forming part of her back four. Wyoming’s second game saw Annika Clayton go one better than Jessie, scoring the team’s second goal in a 2-0 win over Idaho State as Georgia kept a second successive clean sheet.

Kahlia Hogg also registered an assist, in Colorado’s first game of the season. Playing a full 90 minutes against both Air Force and Colorado State this week, Kahlia tallied her assist on the Buffs’ second goal against Air Force as Colorado won 2-0 before following up with a 2-1 win over Colorado State. Sophomore transfer Isobel Dalton came off the bench to make her debut against Air Force, registering a shot in her 6 minutes of play.

Murray State’s first game of the season was cancelled as the Racers were due to travel to the flood-ravaged state of Louisiana for their opener. However, once the side got on the field, reigning Player of the Year Harriet Withers showed that she will certainly be in the reckoning for the award again as the striker banged home two goals against Alabama. Unfortunately for Murray State, they imploded in the second half as their opponents tallied four unanswered goals to storm home for a 4-2 win.

Perhaps playing slightly out of position in an overlapping left fullback role, Beattie Goad nevertheless earned starts in her first two college games as Stanford picked up wins over Navy and Georgetown on their trip to the national capital. Goad played 53 minutes against Navy and 69 minutes against Georgetown as the Cardinal picked up 2-1 and 3-0 wins on the first weekend of the season.

Paige Hayward and Texas Southern had a slow start to the season, going down 3-0 to Houston in the side’s opening game. Playing NAIA team Texas A&M-Texarkana proved to be far less of a challenge for the Tigers. Paige assisted on Texas Southern’s first three goals before banging home one of her own as the Tigers racked up a 4-1 win. Paige’s performance against Texas A&M-Texarkana was pivotal in her being named SWAC Offensive Player of the Week.

Teagan Micah proved to be the surprise packet of the week. Earning the start in UCLA’s first game of the season, Teagan kept a clean sheet in the Bruins’ 5-0 win over San Diego State. Teagan’s highlight of the game was a brilliant save to deny the Aztecs a goal in the bottom left corner. Whilst Despite not featuring in UCLA’s second game of the week, an exhibition against Beijing Normal University, Teagan was named Pac-12 Goalkeeper of the Week for her debut performance.

Player Of The Year Votes:

3: Harriet Withers (Murray State)
2: Paige Hayward (Texas Southern)
1: Teagan Micah (UCLA)

Complete Results:

Hofstra (Emily Hulbert)

This week: defeated Buffalo 1-0; lost 3-1 to Penn State.

Hulbert played 90 minutes in both games, picking up a yellow card against Penn State.

Fairleigh Dickinson (Sam Roff)

This week: lost 3-1 to UNLV; defeated UTRGV 3-2 (OT)

Roff started against UNLV, playing 40 minutes, and came off the bench to play 58 minutes against UTRGV, registering a shot on target.

LSU (Caitlin Cantrill)

This week: lost 1-0 to Virginia Tech; defeated College of Charleston 1-0

Cantrill started both games, playing 68 minutes against Virginia Tech and 51 minutes against College of Charleston.

Iona (Kiri Dale)

This week: lost 3-1 to Holy Cross; lost 2-0 to Bryant

Dale started for Iona against Holy Cross, but did not feature against Bryant.

East Tennessee State (Isabel Hodgson)

This week: defeated USC Upstate 1-0; defeated Radford 1-0

Hodgson played a full 90 minutes in both games, registering 2 shots against USC Upstate.

Stanford (Beattie Goad)

This week: defeated Navy 2-1; defeated Georgetown 3-0

Goad started both matches, playing 53 minutes against Navy and 69 minutes against Georgetown.

Southeast Missouri State (Maddy Cornell, Siena Senatore)

This week: defeated Tennessee 1-0; defeated Illinois-Springfield 3-1

Cornell and Senatore both came off the bench in both games. Cornell played 33 minutes against Tennessee and 53 minutes against Illinois-Springfield, registering a shot which was on target against Illinois-Springfield. Senatore played 26 minutes against Tennessee and 25 minutes against Illinois-Springfield.

Albany (Claire Urquhart)

This week: defeated Army 2-0; lost 3-0 to St John’s

Urquhart started both games, playing a full 90 minutes against Army and 79 minutes against St. John’s.

Wyoming (Alisha Bass, Annika Clayton, Jessie Gentle, Georgia Rowntree, Candace Sciberras)

This week: defeated Houston Baptist 2-0; defeated Idaho State 2-0

Alisha Bass played 66 minutes against Houston Baptist and 90 minutes against Idaho State, registering a shot in each game. Annika Clayton sat out the Houston Baptist game as a precaution but played 35 minutes against Idaho State, scoring the team’s 2nd goal. Jessie Gentle played 41 minutes against Houston Baptist and 35 minutes against Idaho State, tallying an assist on Wyoming’s 2nd goal against Houston Baptist. Georgia Rowntree played a full 90 minutes in each game, registering a clean sheet in each game. Candace Sciberras was rested from both games.

Drexel (Emma Heckenberg)

This week: defeated Temple 2-1; defeated Villanova 3-0

Heckenberg played 38 minutes against Temple, but did not feature against Villanova.

Indiana (Julia De Angelis)

This week: drew with Louisville 1-1; lost 2-0 to Western Michigan

De Angelis was rested from both games this week.

Troy (Alexandra Huynh)

This week: defeated Gardner-Webb 2-0; lost 2-0 to Samford

Huynh played 90 minutes in each game, registering a single shot on both occasions.

Western Carolina (Kate Swartwout)

This week: lost 5-1 to Charlotte; defeated Winthrop 3-1

Swartwout did not feature in either game this weekend.

Murray State (Nyomi Devine, Jade Horcicka, Harriet Withers)

This week: lost 4-2 to Alabama

Harriet Withers played 87 minutes and scored 2 goals on 6 shots. Nyomi Devine played a full 90 minutes in defence. Jade Horcicka did not feature in this game.

Texas Southern (Paige Hayward)

This week: lost 3-0 to Houston; defeated Texas A&M-Texarkana 4-1

Hayward played 90 minutes in both games, scoring a goal and tallying 3 assists against Texas A&M-Texarkana.

Texas Tech (Demi Koulizakis)

This week: defeated New Mexico 2-1; defeated Missouri State 1-0

Koulizakis came off the bench in both games, playing 8 minutes against New Mexico and 10 minutes against Missouri State.

Colorado (Isobel Dalton, Kahlia Hogg)

This week: defeated Air Force 2-0; defeated Colorado State 2-1

Kahlia Hogg played 90 minutes in both games, registering an assist on the 2nd goal against Air Force. Isobel Dalton came off the bench to play 6 minutes against Air Force, tallying a shot, but did not feature against Colorado State.

San Francisco (Price Keogh)

This week: defeated Florida Gulf Coast 2-1; defeated UC Riverside 2-1

Keogh did not feature in either game this week.

UCLA (Teagan Micah)

This week: defeated San Diego State 5-0; defeated Beijing Normal University 7-0

Micah played the full 90 minutes against San Diego State, keeping a clean sheet, but was rotated out for the Beijing Normal University game.

USC (Lulu Pullar)

This week: lost 3-2 to Santa Clara (OT); defeated Beijing Normal University 5-1

Pullar did not feature in either game this week.

Winthrop (Jai Jackson)

This week: lost 3-1 to Western Carolina; defeated USC Upstate 1-0

Jackson came off the bench in both games, playing 20 minutes against Western Carolina and 31 minutes against USC Upstate.

Pacific (Ellie Papalexiou)

This week: lost 2-0 to Cal Poly

Papalexiou started for Pacific, registering a shot.

Massachusetts (Laura Johns)

This week: defeated Holy Cross 2-0

Johns started for Massachusetts, playing 39 minutes.

2016 Top 5 Freshmen

With 10 freshmen joining NCAA Division I women’s soccer this season, there is certainly a plethora of new talent ready to make their mark in the US in 2016. Today, College Matildas takes a look at the top 5, based both on ability and potential impact in their first season.

5. Caitlin Cantrill (Midfielder, LSU, Canberra)

The only member of our Top 5 Freshmen to not have played in the W-League, Caitlin nonetheless parlayed her talents into a spot with a power conference school. LSU may be more famous in Australian circles for top NBA draft pick Ben Simmons, but Caitlin has all the tools to make her own impact in Baton Rouge.

One person who has plenty of experience playing alongside Caitlin is fellow freshman, Indiana midfielder and W-League champion Julia De Angelis, who was a member of the ACT Academy of Sport soccer program alongside Caitlin.

“What’s always stood out for me with Caitlin is her work ethic. She’s a player who will constantly work hard and give her all throughout the game,” De Angelis explained. “She’s fast, agile, creative on the ball, and can hit a good shot. She’s a leader on and off the field, and I always enjoyed playing beside her at ACTAS.”

4. Teagan Micah (Goalkeeper, UCLA, Brisbane)

A product of the Goalkeeping Australia Academy and a Young Matilda, Teagan is a player on the rise. Joining the Western Sydney Wanderers from Brisbane Roar, Micah established herself early as first choice keeper displaying confidence in commanding the back line and providing a creative outlet through clever distribution. Micah’s technical ability paired with her willingness to put her body on the line make her an asset to any team.

Colorado sophomore Isobel Dalton played alongside Teagan at both club and international level, and has seen the goalkeeper go from strength to strength over the last few seasons.

“I’d say Teagan is definitely a young player with a lot of potential. She has extended amounts of experience at different levels of the game. She’s competed for Australia in crucial matches and been a huge part of all our successes throughout Under 17s and then again when she went on to Young Matildas,” Dalton revealed.

“I think Teagan’s determination an mindset plays a big role in how she has coped through her younger playing career and it will definitely transfer into college. Alongside her athletics, her academics are unbelievable so she has definitely found the right school to continue her education and soccer.”

“I think overall Teagan will play a huge role at UCLA based on her drive to become a better player. Most coaches will see she already has the basis down pat so she will no doubt go on to bigger and better things later down the track.”

Whilst this season may see Teagan playing a backup role to UCLA’s Norwegian starter Siri Ervik, the Queenslander is obviously more than capable of stepping in where required in her first season in college in her quest to set herself up to become the starting goalkeeper in coming seasons.

3. Demi Koulizakis (Midfielder, Texas Tech, Sydney)

A Young Matildas representative, Demi is the ultimate squad player. Dedicated to her team and teammates, Koulizakis has earned her stripes with the Western Sydney Wanderers growing into her role as a reliable utility and diverse midfielder. Despite her goal scoring ability, Koulizakis has asserted herself mainly within the defensive back line, slotting in to provide stability and width wherever necessary.

Canadian international and 2012 Olympic bronze medallist Carmelina Moscato played alongside Koulizakis at Western Sydney Wanderers in 2015/16 and has only good things to say about her former teammate.

“Demi is a tenacious player and one who leaves it all on the pitch. Having played with her, she is a versatile player and can adapt to whatever to game is throwing at her,” Moscato explained.

“She’s a hard worker and competitor. I’m looking forward to following her collegiate journey.”

Despite splitting her time between defence and attack in the W-League, Texas Tech coach Tom Stone has already indicated that Demi will be employed in attack for the majority of her time with the team.

“Demi is a dynamic dribbler and passer and obviously can score,” Stone explained on National Signing Day. “We are excited to bring Demi out here and we can’t wait to see what sort of player we can help her become. I think she has aspirations well beyond college and we are excited to help her achieve those goals. Her time in the international arena will help her transition to college soccer.”

2. Beattie Goad (Midfielder, Stanford, Melbourne)

As a regular starter in Melbourne City’s undefeated W-League championship winning side in 2015/16, Beattie had already established herself as one of the competition’s more well-known names, but the opportunity to attend Stanford doesn’t come around for just anyone, and Beattie grabbed the chance with both hands. Beattie has earned over 30 W-League appearances across three seasons for both Melbourne clubs, making her debut at age 16 and already collecting two W-League championships, with Victory in 2013/14 and last season with City.

Stanford’s squad is amongst the best in college soccer this season, but Beattie has already proven herself at W-League level and it should only be a matter of time before she proves her worth in Palo Alto.

Few people know Melbourne women’s football as well as The Women’s Game contributing editor Cheryl Downes, who has watched Beattie since her W-League debut. “Really hard worker is what the coaches say and even just in the past year I have personally seen so much development in her game,” Cheryl revealed. “She has deceptive pace, but her aerial game needs work though.”

Whatever improvements Beattie needs to make in her game to progress to the next level, Stanford is an outstanding environment in which to work on those areas as the young winger looks to make an impact at the highest level of college soccer.

Pre-Season Freshman of the Year: Julia De Angelis (Midfielder, Indiana, Canberra)

It was not an easy decision to put one of these extremely talented players above the rest, but in a rebuilding Indiana program, Julia De Angelis will almost certainly be given plenty of opportunities to make an impact from the outset for the Hoosiers.

A W-League champion with over 20 appearances to her name, De Angelis is one of the most experienced players in this year’s freshman class. Primarily playing deep in midfield, Julia’s time at Canberra United has seen her mentored by some top class players, including US National Team players Lori Lindsey and Kendall Fletcher and Matildas stalwart Caitlin Munoz.

Canberra United coach Raeanne Dower has worked with Julia for several years, and tabbed the midfielder as a potential star even at the tender age of 17.

“She understands her role; defensive midfield isn’t the prettiest position in football, but she is prepared to do that for the team,” Dower revealed in speaking with The Football Sack in 2014. “She is a real fighter, she wins tackles she shouldn’t win and against players much bigger than herself.”

Indiana’s defence varied wildly throughout last season, keeping six clean sheets but giving up three or more goals on five occasions in 19 games as the Hoosiers tallied only three wins in 2015. De Angelis’ presence in midfield may just be the thing Indiana need to tighten up that occasionally leaky defence and turn some losses into draws and draws into wins.

Many thanks to Cassandra Cocciolone from The Women’s Game who assisted with insight on Teagan Micah and Demi Koulizakis, as well as Julia De Angelis, Carmelina Moscato, Isobel Dalton, and Cheryl Downes for their insight on players.

2016 Player Previews

2016 will see a massive 33 Australians suiting up in NCAA Division I Women’s Soccer, an increase of 6 on last year and nearly double the number of players we saw in 2014. Ten of these players are freshmen, whilst one newcomer, Isobel Dalton, is an NAIA transfer from Lindsey Wilson College. With no less than 13 players, including 4 freshmen, possessing W-League experience and several others featuring for youth national teams, there is definitely plenty of Aussie talent in the college ranks this season.

Claire Urquhart (Sophomore, Defender, Albany, Brisbane)

Claire was used sparingly at Albany in 2015, but returns in 2016 ready to have more of an impact in defence. The Albany defence is exceedingly young this season, with four sophomores and one freshman comprising the five natural defenders in the squad, so opportunities may just open up for the sophomore from Brisbane. Claire played 5 games last season, starting in 2 of these contests, as Albany won the America East title before going down to eventual national champions Penn State in the first round of the NCAA Tournament.

Isobel Dalton (Sophomore, Midfielder, Colorado, Sunshine Coast)

Isobel adds to the Australian contingent at Colorado following a season playing NAIA soccer in Kentucky with Lindsey Wilson College, helping the Blue Raiders to a national championship final berth. A former Brisbane Roar W-League player, Isobel has also played in England’s Women’s Super League for Bristol Academy before making the move to the US. Isobel played in 23 games for Lindsey Wilson, scoring 7 goals and also contributing a pair of assists for the Blue Raiders.

Kahlia Hogg (Senior, Defender/Midfielder, Colorado, Canberra)

Kahlia had an excellent first season for Colorado in 2014 after transferring from Florida State, and looked set to continue in the same vein in her senior season. Unfortunately, after starting in six games and playing an average of 85 minutes, Kahlia suffered an injury and was forced to sit out the remainder of the season. Fortunately, Kahlia has been awarded an additional season and will compete again as a senior in 2016, looking to make amends for 2015. One of the fittest players in the team, Kahlia averaged over 85 minutes of playing time per game in 2015, playing a full 90 minutes in four of her six games as Colorado conceded less than 0.7 goals per game with Kahlia on the pitch.

Emma Heckenberg (Sophomore, Midfielder, Drexel, Melbourne)

Emma made a reasonable if not spectacular start to her college career last season, featuring in 8 matches. The Victorian forward also started two of these games, both of which were conference games. The Drexel forward line is young, but features Vanessa Kara, who scored 11 goals last season, which represented almost half of the team’s offensive output. With Kara a lock to start again this season, Emma and the remaining forwards will be fighting for the other spot up front. Emma was a star in the classroom last season though, picking up the CAA Commissioner’s Academic Award.

Isabel Hodgson (Sophomore, Defender, East Tennessee State, Adelaide)

Isabel enjoyed a fantastic first season at East Tennessee State, quickly establishing herself as the team’s starting right back. A product of Adelaide United’s W-League team, Isabel played in all 19 games for the Buccaneers in 2015 as the team finished with a respectable 9-9-1 record. With star midfielder and Austrian national team player Sarah Zadrazil having graduated following the 2015 season, the returning starters will all have to step up if the Buccaneers are to be competitive again in 2016 and Isabel is no different.

Sam Roff (Freshman, Midfielder, Fairleigh Dickinson, Canberra)

One of four players from the same ACT Academy of Sport class to make the move to Division I this year, Sam links up with a fellow Australian at Fairleigh Dickinson, with assistant coach Julia Bazi hailing from Sydney. Primarily a midfielder but also with the ability to play in defence, Sam has been a member of the ACT Academy of Sport for three seasons and also trained with W-League club Canberra United before making the move to Fairleigh Dickinson. The Knights went 16-6 last season, winning the Northeast Conference title and only narrowly losing to Rutgers in the first round of the national tournament, going down 1-0. However, they have lost a massive ten seniors to graduation and star Canadian forward Rachel Hoekstra is transferring to Georgia Southern, taking with her 16 of the side’s 50 goals from last season, so expect this to be a rebuilding season for the team.

Emily Hulbert (Junior, Defender/Midfielder, Hofstra, Melbourne)

An instrumental part of Hofstra’s side for two seasons, Emily will again be part of a solid Hofstra side that will look to limit the damage of the graduation of English international and NWSL player Leah Galton, who was the star of the Pride team last season. Emily’s chances last season were slightly down from 2014, starting just 4 matches in comparison to the 14 she started two seasons ago. Nonetheless, the fullback was able to contribute enough to earn the 2015 College Matildas Defender of the Year award. With another season under her belt, she may just have enough in her locker to win the same award again.

Julia De Angelis (Freshman, Midfielder, Indiana, Canberra)

An integral part of Canberra United’s W-League squad since 2014, Julia will no doubt be one of the top Australian freshmen in college this season as she joins an Indiana side desperate to improve on last seasons 3-10-6 record. Julia has represented Australia at several youth team levels and was also named Canberra United’s Rising Star in both 2014 and 2015. With a pair of midfield spots opening up in 2016 following the graduation of two players, Julia will certainly have the chance to earn a starting spot from the outset.

Kiri Dale (Sophomore, Defender, Iona, Mullumbimby)

One of no less than five Palm Beach products playing in Division I this season, Kiri unfortunately did not see any playing time in her freshman year, but that will surely just make her hungrier to make an impact in her sophomore year. Iona are yet to reveal their freshman class for 2016, but with only four natural defenders returning from last season, this may just be Kiri’s chance to shine and establish herself going forward for Iona. With the Gaels only winning 3 games last year and giving up 49 goals in 19 games, that defence is going to have to stand up this season if the team is to compete.

Caitlin Cantrill (Freshman, Midfielder, LSU, Canberra)

One of the first Australians to commit to a college amongst this year’s freshmen, Caitlin joins an LSU side looking to progress from last season’s SEC semi-final berth and a first round loss to South Alabama in the NCAA Tournament. They do have a slight issue though, that being the loss of nine players to graduation after the 2015 season. Whilst this may be a transition season of sorts for LSU, it also offers Caitlin the chance to see plenty of playing time from the outset. A former member of the Australian Under 17 national team, Caitlin is yet another of the ACT Academy of Sport graduates in this year’s freshman class.

Laura Johns (Senior, Forward, Massachusetts, Adelaide)

The 2015 College Matildas Breakout Player of the Year, Laura tallied the first goal of her college career last season and also notched four assists, a marked improvement on the total of one she managed in the previous two years. More notably, Laura transitioned from what had mainly been a rotational role off the bench to a starter for the majority of the 2015 season. One of four Australian seniors this year, Laura’s continued rise at Massachusetts may just make her the dark horse for the College Matildas Senior of the Year award this season.

Nyomi Devine (Junior, Defender, Murray State, Gold Coast)

A starter from the outset at Murray State, Nyomi was instrumental in keeping things tight at the back during last season’s perfect conference slate as Murray State won the Ohio Valley conference title. Whilst fellow Palm Beach product Harriet Withers may have received the accolades in 2015, there is no doubting that Nyomi was one of the key parts of the Racers’ defence which conceded just 22 goals in 21 games in 2015. Nyomi was also named to the Ohio Valley Conference All-Tournament team to go along with her championship ring.

Jade Horcicka (Freshman, Midfielder, Murray State, Gold Coast)

The newest member of the Palm Beach contingent at Murray State, Jade has not featured for the senior Palm Beach team nearly as much as both Nyomi Devine and Harriet Withers did before they moved on to college, but that doesn’t mean Jade doesn’t come with a solid pedigree. After a single appearance in the Palm Beach first team in 2015, Jade was a regular with the team in 2016 before leaving for college, and was also a mainstay of the Under 20s team last season. Jade has also played for the Queensland Schoolgirls side in 2014 and 2015. The Murray State midfield is burgeoning with players, but many are young and others are employed in other roles, so there may just be some playing time available for Jade early on. The early non-conference games will be telltale, though.

Harriet Withers (Junior, Forward, Murray State, Gold Coast)

Harriet enjoyed a solid first season for Murray State in 2014, scoring six goals and contributing 2 assists in 20 games. That was simply a precursor for an exceptional 2015 season which saw the striker win College Matildas Player Of The Year honours. Harriet banged home 11 goals and also tallied 7 assists as the Racers enjoyed a perfect Ohio Valley conference season before going down in a 1-0 loss to Ole Miss in the first round of the NCAA Tournament. Harriet will need to have another season of similar ilk if Murray State are going to have a chance of repeating, as they lose 11 goals and 11 assists from last season through the graduation of Taylor Stevens and Marissa Burroughs.

Jess Coates (Senior, Midfielder, Nicholls State, Sydney)

A broken wrist put paid to what should have been a glorious senior season for Jess, but after a long wait has been awarded an additional season and will get the chance to play out a proper senior campaign. Jess’ attacking partner, Spencer Valdespino, has now graduated but that may open up a chance for Jess to combine with a fellow Australian, freshman Kristy Helmers, in her senior season. With seven assists in her junior year in 2014, expect Jess to once again be feeding the strikers perfectly – the only question from there is whether they can step up to fill the void left by Valdespino.

Kristy Helmers (Freshman, Forward, Nicholls State, Canberra)

Kristy Helmers will be one of the Nicholls State forwards tasked with making up Spencer Valdespino’s 14 goal tally from last season. With only four recognised forwards in the Nicholls State squad this season, Kristy will no doubt be thrust into the action from the outset. One of four recent ACTAS graduates to be starting college this season, Kristy scored 12 goals in 14 appearances in last season’s Capital Football WPL, following up with 7 goals in 7 appearances this season.

Ellie Papalexiou (Sophomore, Defender, Pacific, Gold Coast)

A dreaded ACL injury put paid to Ellie’s season in 2015, but the fullback returns this season as a redshirt sophomore looking to showcase the kind of form that saw her enjoy a successful 2014 season with Pacific. With a new coach on board in Stockton, Ellie will be forced to prove herself once again, but was able to do this as a freshman and there’s no reason she won’t be able to do so again. Able to play either at left back or on the wing, this versatility should stand Ellie in good stead as she looks to earn back her starting position.

Price Keogh (Sophomore, Defender, San Francisco, Charlotte)

Price represents a slight change of pace amongst the 34 Australians in NCAA Division I this season in that she is actually from Charlotte, North Carolina. The 5’4 defender played in just the one game in her first season in San Francisco, but with two of the team’s starting defenders finishing their careers in 2015, opportunities will surely open up for Price. San Francisco had a reasonably solid year in 2015, finishing 13-4-3 and finishing in 2nd place in the West Coast Conference. Unfortunately, the WCC does not play a postseason tournament, denying the Dons an opportunity to secure a bid to the national tournament, with the team well out of the at-large picture.

Maddy Cornell (Junior, Defender, Southeast Missouri State, Nowra)

Three becomes two with regards to the number of Australians at Southeast Missouri State following midfielder Jenna Collingridge’s graduation. Maddy Cornell is the more senior of the two, with the versatile fullback moving into her junior season in 2016. Maddy featured in 18 games in 2015, starting six of these, which is double the number of both appearances and starts that she saw in 2014. Maddy’s goal now will be to convert those 12 appearances off the bench into starts this year as Southeast Missouri State attempt to make a return trip to the Ohio Valley Conference championship game, with the aim this year to go one better than last year’s overtime loss to Murray State.

Siena Senatore (Sophomore, Defender, Southeast Missouri State, Canberra)

An Under 17 Australian representative before making the move to college, Siena took a few games to find her groove last season, but eventually became a vital part of the defence before suffering an injury late on in the season. After starting the first three games of the season, Siena came off the bench for a few weeks before being returned to the starting lineup as the Redhawks kept 4 clean sheets in a row in the space of 9 days. Siena sat for a couple of weeks with injury, but returns in 2016 ready to slot straight back into the starting lineup in the centre of defence.

Beattie Goad (Freshman, Midfielder, Stanford, Melbourne)

The undoubted star of the 2016 freshman class, Beattie already has a W-League title under her belt, having been an instrumental part of a Melbourne City side that finished undefeated in 2015/16. One of the best young Australian players, Beattie combined those football skills with outstanding academic achievement to open up the chance to play for Stanford, one of the most successful programs in NCAA women’s soccer. A pacy winger with excellent technical abilities, Beattie will face stiff competition for playing time from the likes of United States youth national team representatives Jordan DiBiasi and Andi Sullivan. However, Beattie has spent the year learning from some of the best players in the world, including Lisa De Vanna, and will push all the way for a spot in the lineup.

Alexandra Huynh (Senior, Defender, Troy, Sydney)

After three outstanding seasons at Colorado, Alexandra has this season made the move south to Troy for her senior year. A three year starter at Boulder, the centre back was almost ever-present for the Buffaloes save for an injury midway through her sophomore year. As a member of a Colorado defence that set school clean sheet records in 2015, Alexandra will no doubt be a vital part of the back line in her new team. Troy kept 10 clean sheets in winning 14 of 20 games last season, and with Alexandra now set to replace graduating stalwart Payton Donley in defence, Troy will be well placed to use defence as the foundation of a successful season in 2016.

Paige Hayward (Junior, Forward, Texas Southern, Sydney)

The lone Australian player in the SWAC this season following the graduation of Alabama State’s Shelbi Vienna-Hallam, Paige transferred to Texas Southern in 2015 after a season of NAIA play, and immediately slotted into the team. Hayward played a full 90 minutes on six occasions last season, starting on all 17 occasions that she played. Hayward contributed 2 goals and 5 assists in 2015 as Texas Southern compiled an 8-11 record, going down to Alabama State in the first round of the SWAC Tournament. With no seniors amongst the forwards in 2015, Paige and her fellow strikers will have the opportunity to improve on last year’s output. They may have to if the team is to stay competitive, with last season’s starting goalkeeper and two defenders graduating after the 2015 season.

Demi Koulizakis (Freshman, Forward, Texas Tech, Sydney)

The scorer of the W-League’s 900th goal, Demi saw regular playing time for Western Sydney Wanderers last season but has now made the move to the Lone Star state to become Australia’s sole representative in the powerful Big 12 conference this season. Able to play in the midfield or up front, Demi is likely to be used in a more attacking role at Texas Tech. Demi will be part of the group tasked with replacing graduating Canadian national team player Janine Beckie, who is now playing with the NWSL’s Houston Dash.

Teagan Micah (Freshman, Goalkeeper, UCLA, Brisbane)

Teagan made the move from Brisbane to Western Sydney this past W-League season, but that was nothing in comparison to the jump the goalkeeper has made in 2016. UCLA have been one of the most successful programs of the last decade, winning a national title and producing players such as Lauren Holiday, Sydney Leroux, Samantha Mewis, Megan Oyster, Caprice Dydasco, Abby Dahlkemper, Sarah Killion, McCall Zerboni, Zakiya Bywaters, Lauren Barnes, and Katelyn Rowland. Teagan will have to fight for every minute of playing time, but with last season’s backup Arielle Schechtman making the move to Georgetown, it will now be a fight between 3 rather than 4 players for the starting spot.

Lulu Pullar (Freshman, Defender, USC, Brisbane)

Lulu had been on USC’s radar for over a year, and made the move to Los Angeles in January to get a headstart on her college career. Set to be used in either the back line or anchoring the midfield, Lulu has represented Australian Schoolgirls and has trained with Brisbane Roar’s W-League squad before moving to college. Having already seen plenty of playing time in USC’s spring friendlies, Lulu is well-placed to hit the ground running when competitive play starts in late August.

Kate Swartwout (Freshman, Defender, Western Carolina, Gold Coast)

Originally from the Gold Coast but having learned her trade in Lake Norman, North Carolina, Kate’s new college isn’t actually all that far from home for the freshman. In a young side, but one that only lost a single defender to graduation after 2015, Kate’s ability to also play in midfield looks as if it may stand her in good stead as she vies for playing time in her freshman year. Not without goalscoring ability either, Kate once banged home a hat-trick in a single half playing up front for her club team in Lake Norman.

Jai Jackson (Sophomore, Midfielder, Winthrop, Toowoomba)

A rotational player early on in 2015, Jai finished her freshman season with a flourish, playing full games in each of Winthrop’s last six games as the Eagles finished with a 6-9-3 record, falling to Liberty in the first round of the Big South tournament. Primarily employed deeper in midfield, Jai has also shown a knack for getting forward when required, with her footballing IQ clearly amongst the best in the Winthrop squad. There is little doubt that Jai will reprise her role as an integral part of the Winthrop midfield going forward, with the Queenslander well placed to be a vital cog for her remaining three seasons.

Alisha Bass (Junior, Defender/Midfielder, Wyoming, Sydney)

Is she a midfielder? Is she a defender? Well, ask most people in the Sydney women’s soccer community and they’ll tell you Alisha is an attacking midfielder every day of the week and twice on Sunday. But ask people in Wyoming and they’ll tell you she’s a vital part of the Cowgirls’ defence that helped the team compile a 10-6-4 record before falling in the first round of the Mountain West tournament to Colorado College. Alisha also tallied a pair of goals last season and notched an assist, proving that she still has the attacking instincts that saw her represent Australia at youth level. With no seniors in the 2015 squad, Wyoming have a real chance to build on last year’s successes and become a real force in the Mountain West this season.

Annika Clayton (Sophomore, Midfielder, Wyoming, Sydney)

A starter in 14 games in 2015, Annika featured in all 20 of Wyoming’s contests last season, notching two goals and an assist from midfield in her freshman campaign. Whilst her tangible stats are not out of this world, Annika certainly did enough to average over an hour of playing time per game by the end of last season, with the Wyoming coaching staff clearly impressed by the Sydneysider. With Wyoming’s squad barely changing from last season, Annika should see at least as much time on the field in 2016 as the Cowgirls attempt to build on last season’s 10 wins.

Jessie Gentle (Sophomore, Forward, Wyoming, Woolgoolga)

Like Annika Clayton, Jessie joined Wyoming last season and played in all 20 games, starting in 16. Lining up on the wing for the most part, Jessie averaged over 70 minutes per game, tallying a single assist on Laurel Ramer’s opener against Hawaii in a 2-2 draw early on in the season. Jessie will be looking to create a more tangible impact this season, but has clearly shown that she has the ability to be a major part of the Wyoming side in 2016.

Georgia Rowntree (Junior, Goalkeeper, Wyoming, Sydney)

A starter in 16 games in 2015, Georgia shared the goalkeeping responsibilities with local player Cassidy Entsminger last season and things appear set to stay the same in 2016. Conceding an average of just a single goal per game, Georgia notched a .786 save percentage in 2015, representing an improvement on 2014’s 1.20 goals conceded per game, but with an identical save percentage. However, the most notable of Georgia’s stats was her minutes played. After playing 9 games and earning 451 minutes of playing time in 2014, Georgia played 810 minutes in 2015 as she and Entsminger established themselves as an excellent pairing in goal. Running unopposed for Goalkeeper of the Year for the last two seasons, Georgia has competition for the first time, in the form of UCLA’s Teagan Micah.

Candace Sciberras (Junior, Midfielder, Wyoming, Sydney)

Candace came to Wyoming in 2013 alongside Alisha Bass, but has followed a slightly different course since that time. The winger suffered an ACL injury and was forced to sit out most of the 2015 season after a promising start to the season which saw Candace start the first five games of the campaign. With very little change to the Wyoming roster, expect to see Candace back in the rotation this season and hopefully earning back that starting spot that she had rightfully claimed before last season’s injury.

W-League Champion Goad Moves To Stanford

In one of the biggest signings of an Australian in NCAA women’s soccer history, 2-time W-League champion Beattie Goad will leave Melbourne City and join national powerhouse Stanford for the next four seasons. Tagged as one of Australia’s finest prospects, Goad is a current member of the Young Matildas side, and started in 10 games for Melbourne City this season. Playing in all 14 games for the W-League’s newest side, Goad also scored four goals, including one against Sydney FC in Melbourne City’s W-League grand final success. Goad was also a member of Melbourne Victory’s successful 2013/14 W-League side, featuring in 9 games that season and 11 in 2014/15.

Goad’s addition will bring even more international experience to a midfield that already includes US Under 20 national team members Stephanie Amack and Jordan DiBiasi, as Stanford look to go a couple of steps further than last year’s national quarterfinal, which they lost on penalties to eventual finalists Duke.

Goad has also excelled in the classroom, which will stand her in good stead at Stanford. The young Victorian went incredibly close to achieving a perfect score in the International Baccalaureate, despite being called away from school on multiple occasions for footballing endeavours. Her score placed her in the top 1% of students in Victoria.