LOOKOUT MOUNTAIN, Ga.- The freshmen players that will soon arrive to campus for Pre-season Camp this year are traveling from many different places: Rachel Bernard (Ambler, PA), Mary Claire Roberson (Collierville, TN), JoJo Brauer (Dublin, Ireland), Kelsey Hall (Cleveland, TN), Bekah Kanoff (Hershey, PA), Chelsey Kohl (Colorado Springs, CO), Skip Portis (Montgomery, AL), Jessica Rowe (Lookout Mountain, GA), Madeline Smith (Ballwin, MO), Annie Sostok (Cincinnati, OH), Anne Charlotte Strawbridge (Ocala, FL), Ruth Terry (Birmingham, AL), and Jenna Vreeland (Woodruff, SC).
These incoming freshmen players for the Covenant College Women's Soccer team have been identified by Head Coach Mark Duble as "one of the strongest classes ever brought in to the Lady Scot's Program." He believes this class will not only be strong contenders for positions on the 2012 roster, but also be able to come in as strong contributors for the team as they face tough competition early on in the season.
The strong incoming class along with many experienced upperclassmen makes for a great combination and every coach's dream. Duble describes his senior class as "very competent in their positions and a class that will provide great leadership and motivation for the young and energetic freshmen class. The three 2012 captains, Kat Allison, Amy Dykstra, and Mae Mae Johnson will be strong leaders, both on and off the pitch. When you couple their strengths with physical leaders on the field like Eliza Drew and Ally Jennings in the back, Katelyn Newsome in the midfield, Kara Lee up top, and a goal keeping dual of All-American Hannah Bales and Lulu Johnson then, as a coach, you have a lot to be excited about this season."
To start the season off this year, the Lady Scots will play some of the best competition in the country, beginning with a trip up to Grantham, PA to face the Lady Falcons of Messiah College. Duble knows that the reigning NCAA Division III National Champions will be a very tough test for the Lady Scot's opening match, but he wants his team to compete against the type of teams that consistently make appearances in the NCAA Division III National Tournament each year. Regarding the opening match of the season, Duble says, "With one year left before we are able to compete for a National Tournament bid we want to know where we have to go to climb to the top. I believe we are very fortunate to get the opportunity to play the best."
In addition to playing Messiah College, the Lady Scot's will face tough competition all season, which Duble believes will be great preparation for the future as they compete in the USA South Conference and become full Division III members in the NCAA for the 2013 season. Teams they will face this year include Franklin & Marshall College (Lancaster, PA), The University of the South (Sewanee, TN), Birmingham Southern College (Birmingham, AL), Great South Conference foe Salem College (Winston-Salem, NC), Emory University (Atlanta, GA), and Berry College (Mount Berry, GA). For a full listing of this year's competition, please take a look at the posted 2012 schedule.
As for the team goals this year, the senior class will lead the team and remain focused on two things: first, a Great South Regular Season Championship and second, a NCCAA National Tournament run.