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UMBC WOMEN’S SOCCER INKS FIVE FOR 2006
Baltimore, Md.-UMBC women’s soccer coach Michelle Salmon announced today the signing of five high school seniors to National Letters of Intent. Katie McKay (
“We are very confident about our incoming class,” Salmon said. “We feel that we have addressed all the needs we have for next season. We have a sound core of returning players and a great incoming class. With this blending of talent, I feel we can turn the corner in the America East.”
Katie McKay is an all-metro, all-county, all-section and all-division forward from
“Katie is going to be very difficult to mark,” Salmon said. “She will add balance to our front line and bring another dimension to our air game. Katie’s ability in the air will have an immediate impact on our team.”
Kristine Lyons is an all-district forward from
“Kristine is a player who is known for her ability to fight and win balls,” Salmon said. “She loves to compete, and she matches the mentality of this team.”
A four-year starter on defense, Arielle Tagger was named 2005 New Jersey Player of the Year by the New Jersey Home News, and she was recognized as a first-team all-region, all-state and all-area player. Tagger’s club team, PDA Wildcats, won a national championship in 2004 and finished the season with a No. 1 ranking in the country. In 2005, PDA finished as national finalists, and the team is currently ranked second in the country.
“When you play on the No. 1 club team in the country and you play in a program such as PDA, the sky’s the limit,” Salmon said. “We feel like Arielle will come in and do a tremendous job for our program. Her ability in the back and in the midfield will raise the standard for our program. To land a player from a program such as PDA is such a tremendous step for UMBC.”
Naomi Opaleye comes to UMBC from
“Naomi has unbelievable potential,” Salmon said. “She’s a very good player, and we anticipate her being a vital part of our soccer program. I believe she will be a perfect fit here at UMBC”
A four-year varsity team member at
“We’re very excited about LaShawna Epps,” Salmon said. “She is going to have an incredible impact in our program. With her speed and ability, she should come in and compete for a starting job right away. She’s just an outstanding student-athlete. We’re looking forward to her being a Retriever next season.”
Salmon believes this recruiting class will make a speedy UMBC team even faster in 2006. In addition, she believes the five newcomers will help fill the voids left by graduating seniors Jessica Golibart, Kelly Fiorani and Missy Moore.
“It is hard to replace three impact players, but we feel this freshman class will address concerns that we had about the upcoming season,” the coach said. “This class should be a perfect fit with our current team. They have the right mentality, they work hard, they’re willing to put in the extra time necessary and they understand our team’s philosophy - no one player is greater than the whole.
“They’re ready to bleed black and gold and we’re excited about it,” Salmon added.