Terps Women's Soccer Welcomes 11 Newcomers In 2008
Feb. 7, 2008
COLLEGE PARK, Md. - Maryland women's soccer head coach Brian Pensky welcomes 11 high school standouts from six different states to the Terrapin soccer program for the 2008 season as part of National Signing Day. Pensky and his staff hope to make it two consecutive years having a Top 20 recruiting class.
"This is a talented recruiting class, and very heavy in attacking players," said Pensky. "Adding this athletic group to our roster will give us depth and competition at each position, which are both needed to succeed in the ACC. We have everything in this class from highly touted National Team players to ones with less glamorous resumes - yet both extremes have the ability to be big-time impact players for us."
Coming to College Park to don the red and black will be forward/midfielder Skyy Anderson (Cambridge, Mass.), forward/defender Sade Ayinde (Bellmore, N.Y.), forward/midfielder Ashley Grove (Rochester, N.Y.), forward/midfielder Lydia Hastings (Rehoboth Beach, Del.), forward/midfielder Becky Kaplan (Oyster Bay, N.Y.), defender Carly Lenger (East Brunswick, N.J.), midfielder Kristen McAfee (Moorestown, N.J.), midfielder Amy O'Sullivan (Rochester, N.Y.), forward Danielle Schulmann (Saddle River, N.J.), forward Jasmyne Spencer (Bay Shore, N.Y.) and forward/midfielder Dominique Vellutato (Camarillo Springs, Calif.).
Pensky on Anderson: "We are quite pleased to have secured a player of Skyy's caliber and pedigree just six weeks ago. Skyy is a technical, fast and powerful player. She has the ability to contribute in a number of positions, from forward to wide midfield to wide back."
Anderson on why she chose Maryland: "I chose Maryland for its academic reputation and the soccer. I was also looking for a diverse college where everyone was accepting of everyone and that's exactly what I saw during my first visit to Maryland. I loved it!"
Pensky on Ayinde: "We've had our eye on Sade since the beginning of her sophomore year. Sade is so versatile. Her break-away speed as a forward is special; yet at the same time she has gained invaluable experience as an attacking wide back at the national team level. Sade will undoubtedly help us sooner than later - it's just a question of at what position."
Ayinde on why she chose Maryland: "I chose Maryland because I felt that the environment at Maryland best fit my personality. The team and coaches made me feel confident that I could spend the next four years of my life at Maryland."
Pensky on Grove: "Last May I traveled to Rochester, N.Y., to watch a player on the Rhinos club team. As it turned out, I discovered Ashley and Amy O'Sullivan - who were hands down the two best players on the field. Ashley's ability to get behind teams using her pace is so exciting - and you match that pace with her skill, and we are getting a pretty darn good attacking player."
Grove on why she chose Maryland: "I chose Maryland because it combines great academics with great athletics."
Pensky on Hastings: "While Lydia has had success at the Delaware ODP and Region I ODP levels, she has done so growing up on the beaches of Delaware, where finding consistent competition wasn't always the easiest task. This month she will be in camp with the U18 National Team, which will undoubtedly help her growth as a player. We are ecstatic that Lydia is here now, in the spring of 2008, to put her in the best position possible to succeed next fall."
Hastings on why she chose Maryland: "I chose Maryland because it has a great engineering program and the women's soccer team is growing into an ACC powerhouse!"
Pensky on Kaplan: "Becky is the consummate soccer player. We are ecstatic to have her joining our program. Becky can play ten positions on the field. This speaks to her understanding of the game, and her skill level, not to mention she has been a 100m and 200m champion in track over the last three years. Becky is an outstanding addition to our program, and we look for her to contribute immediately."
Kaplan on why she chose Maryland: "I chose Maryland because it is an excellent school academically, which offers me the opportunity to explore my major. Also, Maryland has an excellent soccer program with a very empathetic staff and a very close-knit team."
Pensky on Lenger: "We look forward to Carly coming to Maryland and continuing to grow as a player. She has competed at the highest level of club soccer - the US Youth National Championship game - and has proven that her speed and distribution can be extremely effective at that level."
Lenger on why she chose Maryland: "As soon as I saw Maryland I fell in love. It's everything I wanted in a large school; great academics with a great Division I women's soccer team, beautiful campus, and other quality sports teams, which is a big thing in my life - not only to play, but as a fan as well."
Pensky on McAfee: "Kristen has a very good feel for the game, and is an excellent passer of the ball. Unfortunately she has been slowed by injury over the last few years, but Kristen's diligence in rehab will still put her in a position to help this program. This environment will undoubtedly bring out the best in Kristen."
McAfee on why she chose Maryland: "I chose to attend Maryland because of the highly competitive environment. I knew from the beginning of my college search process I wanted to be surrounded by not just great soccer players but great athletes, where my game would be taken to the next level."
Pensky on O'Sullivan: "Amy, along with Ashley Grove, were the two best players on the field last May when I was recruiting in Rochester, N.Y. Amy is going to help us a lot. She has very good instincts, very good technique and a thirst for being the best player possible. Her competitiveness will be a real asset at this level."
O'Sullivan on why she chose Maryland: "I chose Maryland because not only is it a great academic school, but it is an opportunity to play in the most competitive conference in the country. After meeting Coach Pensky and the players on the team, I knew Maryland was a great fit for me."
Pensky on Schulmann: "Danielle is a true competitor. You can't put a price on the heart and guts with which she plays. Those qualities, along with her speed and knack for scoring goals, make for a very dangerous forward. Danielle was the leading scorer for Arsenal World Class, which advanced to the 2007 US Youth Soccer national championships."
Schulmann on why she chose Maryland: "I chose Maryland because I really liked the coaches and the campus and the fact that it is in the ACC. Plus my cousin attends Maryland!"
Pensky on Spencer: "Jas was the leading scorer on a very talented Long Island Fury WPSL team. She is lightning fast! That speed, coupled with Jas' work-rate on both sides of the ball, makes her a handful for defenders to deal with. And she's another one who will just get better and better in this environment - her upside is limitless."
Spencer on why she chose Maryland: "I chose Maryland because it's a prestigious university with great facilities and a very warm and welcoming campus atmosphere. As far as athletics go, it's in the top conference in the country for women's soccer and will enable me to grow as a player."
Pensky on Vellutato: "Dominique has two gifts that nobody can teach - a special left foot and break-away speed. She has the ability to help our team's attack in the wide area right away. As a member of the two-time US Youth Soccer national champion Eagles out of Calif., we know she will come in well-prepared."
Vellutato on why she chose Maryland: "When I visited Maryland, all three coaches were so enthusiastic about me considering their program that I immediately felt this could be the school for me. I was set on playing on the West Coast, but when I met the entire team and saw how close they were, I knew I would enjoy playing with them. Then I saw the facilities and how the student body supported the team, and I was sold."