Talented Student-Athletes Headline Women's Soccer Recruiting Class

Feb. 6, 2014

CHICAGO - DePaul women’s soccer is following up one of the most successful seasons in program history with a deep and talented recruiting class announced by coach Erin Chastain.

After earning a bid to the NCAA tournament last fall and leading the nation in save percentage, the Blue Demons are ready to take their program to the next level.

The eight incoming freshmen in the class of 2014 have the potential to be among the best recruiting classes in program history. On Thursday, Elizabeth Endy of Minnetonka High School was honored as the Gatorade Minnesota Girls Soccer Player of the Year.

“We are really excited about our 2014 class,” Chastain said. “We feel we really identified our program’s needs at the back, midfield and forward spots and have added a group of players who will help our program continue to grow and be competitive at the national level.

“It’s also a class full of personality that will be a great addition to the chemistry of our team. All of these young women have been extremely committed to their development as athletes, students and people, and we look forward to the many contributions they will have in their careers at DePaul.”

Here are profiles of the future Blue Demons.

BenAlexa Ben - Midfielder - Schaumburg, Ill. (Schaumburg HS)
The 2012 All-Area selection and 2011 All-Conference pick led the Saxons to IHSA regional titles in 2011 and 2012 and to the St. Charles East Tournament championship. Top Drawer Soccer ranked her the No. 17 college prospect in the Midwest and listed her as a four-star recruit. Her ECNL Eclipse club soccer team won the Eclipse Challenge Cup in 2012 and 2013 and competed in the Disney Soccer Showcase girls’ tournament.

Coach Chastain: “Alexa is a very special attacking player with an outstanding soccer IQ. She can play attacking mid or up top and will immediately impact our team’s ability to create chances.”

Kassandra Cerda – Defender/Forward – Las Vegas, Nev. (Centennial HS)
This Top Drawer Soccer four-star recruit was the No. 18-ranked defender in the nation and the No. 4 prospect overall in the Rocky Mountain/Southwest region. She helped lead the Heat Football Club ECNL 96 to the Vegas Cup title in 2013 and the Surf Cup title in 2011. Cerda lettered in soccer for one season and in tennis for two seasons at Centennial and received the Hispanic Scholar Award. She was chosen a Centennial Scholar-Athlete for three years and served on the Centennial Student Council.

Coach Chastain: “Kassie is a flank player who is as tenacious as they come. She loves to attack and loves to defend.”

EdwardsLucy Edwards - Midfielder/Defender – Lake Forest, Ill. (Lake Forest HS)
The daughter of 1980s DePaul basketball standout and former NBA player Kevin Edwards, this talented athlete was an All-Conference and All-Section pick with the Scouts. She played for Team Illinois at the ODP Championships and led her club team FC United to the state title and regional semifinals in 2012 and the MRL championship in 2013. She is a published author and winner of a student-writing competition. Kevin Edwards is the Director of Corporate and Professional Relations for the Blue Demon men’s basketball program.

Coach Chastain: “Lucy is a special athlete who is great as a holding mid or defender. She’s very smooth and comfortable on the ball and will help our team possess and connect.”

Elizabeth Endy – Defender – Deephaven, Minn. (Minnetonka HS)
The versatile back-line performer was just honored as 2013-14 Gatorade Minnesota Girls Soccer Player ofEndy the Year. She became the first Minnetonka player to win the award after leading the Skippers to a 17-2-2 record and the Class AA state title. Endy had five goals, 10 assists and anchored a defense that recorded 13 shutouts. She was a 2013 NSCAA All-American who was chosen Minnesota’s Ms. Soccer and named to the All-State team. Endy was also the Minneapolis Star Tribune Metro Player of the Year and a three-time All-Conference selection.

In high school she was a three-time, All-State athlete in track and ran on the state champion 4x800 relay team in 2012 while helping lead Minnetonka to the Class AA state title in 2013. Endy led her club soccer team to the Minnesota State Cup U-16 title. She is an AP Scholar and a National Honor Society student.

Coach Chastain: “Elizabeth’s pace and endurance truly set her apart. She’s a phenomenal athlete and soccer player with an incredible mentality.”

FrascaLauren Frasca – Goalkeeper – Aurora, Ill. (Rosary HS)
The Tri-Cities All Area and All-Sectional Honorable Mention and All-Conference athlete led Rosary to the sectional semifinals and to three regional titles. In club soccer, she was named to the ODP state team and helped lead the Strikers Fox Valley FC to the MRL division title. Frasca also competed in the West Coast FC Final Four Showcase in 2012. She was named a Rosary Scholar-Athlete and is a member of Mu Alpha Theta.

Coach Chastain: “Lauren is a fearless goalkeeper who is great at shot stopping and 1 v 1 scenarios. She’s got a great attitude and will provide quality depth at the goalkeeper position.”

Sonia Johnson - Midfielder/Defender – Houston, Texas (The John Cooper School)Johnson
The Top Drawer Soccer four-star recruit was rated the No. 22 player in Texas. Adept at holding midfielder or anywhere on the back line, Johnson was a three-time All-Conference choice, two-time Offensive MVP and 2013 Female Athlete of the Year.

She was big reason why the Dragons were a Southzone Division 1 runner-up for three seasons and was chosen the 2013 Rotary Club Student of the Year. Johnson led her club team, the Texas Rush, to the Presidents Cup state and regional titles in 2011 and third place in the 2011 Presidents Cup Nationals.

Coach Chastain: “Sonia is a great soccer player and athlete who can play midfield or defense. She’s very comfortable with the ball at her feet and extremely good in the air. She’s also got a wonderful ability to hit a wide range of free kicks.”

PetrilloMaria Petrillo - Defender/Forward – Arlington Heights, Ill. (St. Viator HS)
This All-Conference and All-Sectional performer led St. Viator to a conference title and third in the Class 2A state tournament in 2012 and to a regional title in 2013. Top Drawer Soccer ranked her among the top 20 players in the Midwest. A standout with Sockers FC Chicago, Petrillo was the top scorer at the Nike Manchester United Premier Tournament in Oregon and a three-time Elite Clubs Tournament MVP.

She helped lead her club team to the ECNL US Club regional title and to the national tournament along with the USYSA state title and regional finals and was an IYSA State Cup finalist. She will be reunited at DePaul with close friend and Sockers FC teammate Jessica Schmidt.

Coach Chastain: “Maria has great pace and is able to tirelessly get up and down the flank from the outside back position. She’s extremely feisty and great on the attacking end as well.”

Jessica Schmidt - Midfielder/Forward – Park Ridge, Ill. (Maine South HS)Schmidt
This All-Conference, All-Area and All-Sectional Honorable Mention athlete was ranked No. 18 in the Midwest by Top Drawer Soccer. She helped the Sockers FC win the US Club Soccer regional title in 2008 and 2009, the USYSA State Cup title in 2008, 2010 and 2011 and the MRL title in 2009. Schmidt was invited to attend the US Soccer Training Center program in 2010. The Illinois State Scholar is a member of the National Society of High School Scholars and recipient of the Foreign Language Achievement Award.

Coach Chastain: “Jessie has a wonderful feel for the game and is a great athlete. She has the versatility to play attacking mid or forward and will have a big impact on our attack.”



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