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Photo by: South Dakota State University

Jackrabbit soccer adds eight for 2014

Courtesy: SDSU Sports Info
Release: 02/13/2014 10:40:42
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Head coach Lang Wedemeyer and the Jackrabbit women’s soccer program are excited to announce the addition of eight players to the 2014 class. The incoming class includes players from California, Illinois, Minnesota and South Dakota.

“Overall, we are tremendously excited about this recruiting class. We have a great mix of athletes who are technical, have played a high level, and who love to compete,” Wedemeyer said. “Not only are they tremendous soccer players, but they are all excellent students and great people. They will surely add to the wonderful team that will be returning for the fall of 2014 and make impacts for our program right away.”

The new additions include:

Amber Greely: Forward, Saint Michael, Minn., Saint Michael-Albertville H.S. (Minnesota Thunder Academy ECNL)
Nicole Hatcher: Forward/Midfielder, Sioux Falls, S.D., Roosevelt H.S. (Dakota Alliance)
Samantha Koepp: Defender/Midfielder, Livermore, Calif., Bishop O'Dowd H.S. (Pleasanton Rage ECNL)
Julia Lam: Midfielder, Apple Valley, Minn., Apple Valley H.S. (Dakota Rev)
Bianca Madonia: Midfielder, Schaumburg, Ill., James B. Conant H.S. (Chicago Sockers ECNL)
Tori Poole: Forward, South Saint Paul, Minn., South Saint Paul H.S. (Minnesota Thunder Academy ECNL)
Jennie Scislow: Defender/Midfielder, Lakeville, Minn., Saint Croix Lutheran H.S. (Minnesota Thunder Academy ECNL)
Emily Sutliff: Forward, Eagan, Minn., Eastview H.S. (Dakota Rev)

Amber Greely:

Greely, a native of Saint Michael, Minn., is one of three players (Tori Poole and Jennie Scislow) from the Minnesota Thunder Academy ECNL club team. In 2010, Greely was named to the U-14 United States National team. She was a member of the Minnesota Olympic Development ’96 team for five years (2007-11) and played for Minnesota Thunder Academy Elite Blue ‘96 team for two seasons (2010-2011). On Greely, Wedemeyer said, “Amber is an awesome athlete that has played mostly up top for her club and high school, but has the ability to play just about anywhere on the field. She is a real competitor and backs it up with being very sound both technically and tactically. She’ll mostly likely be up top, but could be moved around based on where we need her the most.”

Greely is excited to join the Jackrabbit soccer team, she stated, “I chose to go to SDSU because I loved the campus and everyone I met up with when I was touring. The girls are super nice and I'm also extremely excited to be a Jackrabbit and have the opportunity to play with the team this coming year in soccer!”

Nicole Hatcher:

Hatcher comes to SDSU after playing at Roosevelt High School in Sioux Falls, S.D. She capped off her high school career with back-to-back state titles in 2012 and 2013. She also garnered all-state honors three years in a row (2011-13) and was named Soccer605’s player of the year in 2013.

“Nicole is a fantastic competitor that knows how to score goals. She is an excellent athlete and combines toughness with great technical ability. She’ll most likely play in midfield or up front for us,” Wedemeyer said.

Hatcher said that SDSU is the perfect fit for her, “SDSU has my major, the atmosphere, the size, and the distance from home I wanted.”

Samantha Koepp:

Koepp will be the third player from California on the 2014 SDSU roster (Blaklee McMillen and Sydney Tobin) as she attended Bishop O'Dowd High School in Oakland, Calif. Her high school team won the North Coast section title twice (2012 & 2013) and she was also a California Youth Soccer Association (CYSA) State Cup finalist.

Koepp will bring a high level of athleticism to the Jackrabbits as she as the ability to play anywhere on the field. Wedemeyer stated, “Sam is a very technical player that has the athleticism and ability to play pretty much anywhere on the field. Her versatility will really help us this fall. She’ll most likely play deep in midfield or somewhere in the back.”

Even though SDSU is a long way from Livermore, she feels at home with the Jackrabbits. “When I got to the campus, I was truly surprised because I really liked the campus and the atmosphere. Also, the coaches and the team made me feel very welcomed which helped me decide to go to SDSU,” Koepp said.

Julia Lam:

Lam, along with Emily Sutliff played club soccer for Dakota Rev. She is from Apple Valley, Minn., and played high school soccer at Apple Valley. While Lam was on the Dakota Rev club team, they were Minnesota State Cup finalists three years in a row (2011-13) and they also won the 2013 U-17 Gothia Cup.The Gothia Cup is the largest soccer tournament in the world and is held annually in Gothenburg, Sweden.

During Lam’s five years on the Apple Valley soccer team she was named Rookie of the Year (2010), three-time All-South Suburban Conference (2011-13), three-time MVP (2011-13), two-time captain (2012 & 2013) and All-State Honorable Mention (2013). 

“Julia plays with a tremendous fire and passion and doesn’t back down from any challenge. She can run from box to box all game long and does all the dirty work for the players around her. She’ll play in the midfield for us,” Wedemeyer said.

“I chose SDSU because of all the colleges I toured, it was the only one I could see myself going to,” Lam said. “The team and coaches were so welcoming and to find out they had the Exploratory Studies of Health Sciences program made me really want to attend SDSU as I'm still vaguely unsure of what I want to do and I think that program will help me figure that out. Although, the family atmosphere of the team and campus was what really pushed me to choose SDSU!”

Bianca Madonia:

Madonia joins the Jackrabbit women’s soccer team after being a standout soccer player at James B. Conant High School in Schaumburg, Ill. She garnered all-conference honors during her junior year and was named captain for her senior season. She also played for the Chicago Sockers ECNL club team.

On joining the Jackrabbits, Madonia said, “I chose to attend SDSU because as soon as I stepped foot on campus it felt like home. I fell in love with the school and I love everything about the soccer program! The team, coach, facilities and the competitiveness.”

According to Wedemeyer, Madonia is a player that can make plays on the field, he said, “Bianca is a sparkplug that plays with great passion and creativity. She has the ability to beat players in unexpected ways and make things happen on the field. She’ll play in midfield or up top for us as well.”

Tori Poole:

Poole, a four-time letterwinner at South Saint Paul High School, is one of five incoming players from Minnesota. Not only did she have success on the field for the Packers, she was named to the Gold Honor Roll during all four years and was a member of the National Honor Society for two years. On the field, Poole was named the Rookie of the Year in 2010, all-conference three times (2011-13) and captained her team throughout the 2013 season. She ended her high school career with 57 goals and 27 assists.

Coach Wedemeyer mentions that Poole has the potential to be a scoring threat for the Jackrabbits, he said, “Tori has all the makings to be a top level forward for us in the years to come. Her runs off the ball, determination to score, and craftiness around the goal all make her a real threat every time she steps on the field. She’ll play up top for us.”

Jennie Scislow:

Scislow committed to the Jackrabbits after a decorated career at Saint Croix Lutheran High School. She ended her high school career holding the school records in assists (54), goals (83) and points (220). Scislow was a six-time letterwinner, named all-conference four-times, three-time team MVP and a two-time co-captain. She also played on the Minnesota Thunder Academy ’96 club team for five years (U-13-16, U-18) and was a member of the Minnesota United (U-17) club team for a year. Her club team won the Minnesota Youth Soccer Association (MYSA) State Championship in 2010 and claimed the US Club Regional Championship as well.

“Jennie came to us out of the blue, but we are really excited for what she can bring to the team this fall,” Wedemeyer said. “She is primarily a midfielder, but is versatile enough to play in other positions. She is a tremendous athlete and a pretty ‘heady’ soccer player.”

“I first looked into SDSU because it offered my intended major of Interior Design and decided to visit. The minute I got in my car after the visit, I knew SDSU was the right place for me," Scislow said. “I liked the medium size of the student body and the small feel of the campus. The school has great academic programs as well. What really sold me on SDSU was the coaches and girls on the soccer team. Both were very friendly, good-willed, and made me feel at home."

Emily Sutliff

Sutliff follows in the footsteps of sophomore Brianna Ismale, as she comes to the Jackrabbits after playing soccer at Eastview High School in Apple Valley, Minn. Sutliff along with Lam played for the Dakota Rev club soccer team. Her athletic achievements include being named Ms. Tackle, Ms. Offense and all-conference. In 2013, she was a member of the Dakota Rev team that won the U-17 Gothia Cup. “Emily is another dynamic athlete who can run past players in 1v1 situations. She is quick and explosive and a handful for any opponent. She’ll play up top for us,” Wedemeyer stated.

Sutliff can’t wait to get started to with Jackrabbit soccer team as she stated, “I love the campus and the women's soccer program and I can't wait to start playing and attend this university.”

The Jackrabbits graduated four seniors from last year’s squad that finished second overall in The Summit League with their record of 11-5-2 (6-1-0).

Coach Wedemeyer is scheduled to discuss the 2014 recruiting class at Cubby's Sports Bar and Grill in downtown Brookings. The annual Signing Day Party, hosted by South Dakota State University Athletics, is set to begin at 5:30 p.m., on Wednesday night.

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