March 28, 2012
DALLAS (SMU) - SMU women's soccer head coach Brent Erwin has announced the signing of the program's 2012 class which includes Sara Watson, Lissi Lonsberry, Shannon Moroney, Brooke O'Hare and Lauren Shroyer.
"This was not a year that we had to replace a huge number of players so we looked for individual qualities to go along with their ability to play and I think we were able to do it. We are very excited by this group and what they can add to our team." Erwin said.
The pair of Lonsberry and Watson will join SMU from the Dallas Texans. The two have helped lead their club to five North Texas State Cup championships since 2005, five-straight Region III Premier League championships, a national runner-up finish in 2009 and the 2008 Gothia Cup championship in Gothenburg, Sweden. The team is currently No. 1 in the Elite Clubs National League.
Watson is a central defender from Flower Mound, Texas, who has the tools to step right in and fill a need for the upcoming season. Sara has been a member of the North Texas state team and the Region III Olympic Development Program pool.
"Sara is a player who we would like to see come in and step into that position right away and be able to contribute," Erwin said. "She has every ability that you look for in a center back--strong, tall, can win the ball in the air, combative and can win tackles. Also, if you look at a history of the defenders that come out of her club, they've always gone on to do well so I think she's been trained in a good way."
Lonsberry, a midfielder/forward from Southlake, Texas, is ranked as the No. 11 player in Texas according to TopDrawerSoccer and is in ESPNHS's Top 150 Class of 2012. She leads her high school team, Southlake Carroll, in goals scored and is the second-leading scorer on the Texans.
"Lissi has just gone through a year that she's scoring a lot of goals for both Southlake Carroll and the Dallas Texans," Erwin noted. "She's scored goals playing on the outside or at the center striker. She's very versatile, has good speed and is a fantastic athlete. She comes from a family to where her older sister went on to play Division I sports so she knows the demands of college athletics."
Moroney, a goalkeeper from Allen, Texas, competes for D'Feeters where she has been her team's captain for the past eight years, leading the club to a regional championship in 2009. This year, Maroney was selected to participate in the United States Youth Soccer ENCL player development program. She has been ranked as one of the top 100 players in the nation by Topdrawersoccer. She has been a member of the North Texas and Region III ODP teams since 2007. At Allen High School, she is a two-time All-District selection and a member of the 2011 All-Region team.
"Shannon fills a need for us at goalkeeper," Erwin said. "She can come in and compete with the players that we already have. She fits the profile, six-foot, has good range and is an unbelievable athlete. She's come to our summer camp before and any sort of physical testing we have put her through, she's tested off the charts. She is one of the top goalkeepers in our region and we are excited to have her at SMU."
O'Hare, a defender from Jacksonville, Fla., has competed for both Ponte Vedra Storm and Creeks Clash. In 2009, O'Hare's Ponte Vedra team became the first club from North Florida to win a regional championship. The team went on to take second at the USYS National Championship. This year, O'Hare led Creeks Clash to a second-place finish in the Region III Premier League. O'Hare was also an All-City selection and member of the Florida All-Star state team this season while leading the Bolles School to the state finals.
"Brooke comes from a very prestigious school in Jacksonville, the Bolles School, which took second this year," Erwin said. "She also plays club for Ponte Vedra, another team that's won championships. She's a very high character-person who works very hard and will bring some versatility to the team."
Shroyer, a defender from Hinsdale, Ill., is a member of NSA Premier Fury, one of the top club teams in the Midwest. During the past four years, Shroyer has helped her team to two Illinois State Cup championships, a Region II title in 2010, and a USYS National Championship in 2011. Her team has also finished in the top four of the USYS National League during the past three years, winning the league a year ago.
"Lauren is a player who brings us some versatility either in the midfield or in the back" Erwin added. "She comes from a NSA team, which is no different than players who have played for the Texans. We look for players who have won at different places and her team has done just that."