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Mansfield University welcomes recruiting class for women’s soccer

MANSFIELD — Fifth-year coach John Shaffer and the Mansfield University women’s soccer program welcome 10 newcomers to 2022 preseason camp.

The Mounties will look to blend the 10 rookies with 16 returners to round out a deep roster of 26 student-athletes during the 2022 season. The Mounties begin the campaign on Sunday, Aug. 28 when they host non-conference opponent Salem University at the MU Soccer Field.

The Mountaineers are seeking to improve on a 2-14-2 overall record from last season. The squad came out victories their last time on the pitch, as they downed rival Lock Haven University, 1-0, in dramatic golden-goal fashion.

“I am extremely excited about the group of women coming into the program. They exemplify the core values of love, serve and grow, and will be a valued addition to the program on the field and also in the campus community and classroom,” Shaffer said. “Many of the women have the ability to play all over the field in multiple positions which provide the program added depth and flexibility in how we play. I am humbled that each and every one of them choose Mansfield for the academic and athletic futures.”

The recruiting class features Plesant Valley goalie Samantha Merkin, Northampton forward Lauren Straub, Easton forward/defender Quelyn Nepa, Mifflinburg midfielder Emily Walls, Shikellamy midfielder Wiley Egan, Orangeville, Canada forward Ella Waldner-Smith, Upper Perkiomen’s Sam Kozminski, Fleetwood forward Madison Herb, Caesar Rodney, Delaware defender Olivia Hudson and St. Roch Catholic Secondary School of Ontario midfielder Taya-Reese Johnson.

Merklin was an all-state goalie and all-region goalie while also being named to the PA All-American first-team.

Nepa was a four-year letterwinner as a forward and defender and named a team captain as a senior. She also was a second-team All-Area 2020 forward and third-team All-Area defender in 2021.

Walls was a standout midfielder at Mifflinburg and led the team to a 20-2 overall record and 9-0 league record as a senior. She was part of Mifflinburg’s first-ever District 4 Class AAA championship team along with their first trip to the state quarterfinals.

Egan was a second-team HAC midfielder in 2019 and first-team in 2020. She also was a first-team midfielder in 2021 anda n Outstanding Midfielder Award recipient in 2020.

Kozminski was a captain of her club and high school team and was a second-team All-Division Pioneer Athletic Conference member as a sophomore. She led the team to the Frontier Division Championship and District 1 Class AAA final as a senior.

Herb was a midfielder on the FC Revolution club women’s soccer team and was a soccer captain in 201.

Hudson was a letterwinner for Caesar Rodney High School and a first-team all-conference centerback.

Reese-Johnson was a captain of the Dixie Soccer Club’s G2004 Elite Team and was a 2021 Ontario Cup Provincial champion.

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