Women's Soccer Inks Six to NLI's
The class consists of three defenders, two midfields and a goalkeeper. All six hail from the state of Michigan, bringing the total number of Michiganders on the squad to 18.
"This class is going to be a strong, technical and tactical class," analyzed Grech. "I wanted to bring in and focus a lot on making up for some of the players we have lost, but going forward all six bring something very different and something new. Their work ethic is something that is going to help them fit in very well to this team. I am excited about their abilities on the field and who they are as people and for their excitement for Western Michigan and what we are doing here as a program.
Collin, a goalkeeper, racked up an impressive career at Grand Ledge, being named First Team All-CAAC and First Team All-District by the Lansing State Journal in both 2010 and 2011. She also made the All-Regional team in 2011 and was the captain of the team during her junior and senior seasons. Collin also played for the TNT Dynamite Soccer Club and was a member of the Michigan State Olympic Development Program
"Kaitlyn is a very athletic and very vocal goalkeeper," said Grech. "She has stepped upper game in the last few years and has put herself in good position to come in and compete. She is a very confident keeper out on the field and is a real leader form the back."
Lee was a standout center back at Dow High School, making the varsity team as a freshman. She was named Honorable Mention All-State during her sophomore season and was named Second Team All-State her junior year, with her senior season yet to be played. She carries a 3.95 GPA and is a member of National Honor Society. Lee played her club soccer for Vardar and was a captain for two of her four years with the team. She was also a member of the Michigan ODP team for five years.
"Lindsey is the epitome of a true center back," explained Grech. " She is tall, aggressive in the air and she communicates extremely well. I think she is someone we will be looking at to make a splash in our back line with a starting center back position open coming into next year. Her ability not he ball allows her to work out of the back, which is something we pride ourselves on."
Nylen, a center defensive midfielder, has been named All-State each of the last two seasons at Rochester Adams High School. She was honored on the first team in 2011 and the second team in 2012. She helped lead Adams to the state semifinals during her sophomore season and was named the team MVP last year. Nylen also started for Vardar during her four year club career.
"Kylie is a tall, defensive, center midfielder and is extremely athletic," said Grech. "She is someone that I think can be a great addition to our midfield. Her athleticism allows her to get up and down the field and allow her to get forward when we need her."
Piccariello, an outside back, is the third future Bronco to have played her club soccer with Vardar, helping lead them to the State Cup finals in 2011 and 2010. At Eisenhower High School she lettered as a freshman on the varsity team and was named All-County, All-District and All-Conference as a junior.
"Heather is small, feisty and determined," explained Grech. "She is a tenacious player both offensively and defensively. Heather is going to be someone that is going to come in and be a pest for opponents to deal with."
Pirrone was a four year letter winner for Bedford High School as a defender. She was named Honorable Mention All-Conference during her freshman and sophomore years and was named All-Conference and All-Monroe County her junior year. During her junior season she was named Defensive Player of the Year in her conference. She played her club soccer for the Novi Jaguars and the Bedford United Soccer Club.
"Taylor is an outside back but can also play on the wing," said Grech. "She is someone who once she gets the ball at her feet, wants to go forward. She has a great work rate and fitness level that are both going to help her benefit right away."
Zahn is a versatile midfielder that can slot in at both center back and outside back. She plays her club soccer with the Michigan Football Club and has lettered for Eisenhower High School. She has helped the Michigan Football Club to a top ranking in the state of Michigan and a third ranking in the region. She was a member of the Michigan ODP team in 2006, 2008, 2010 and 2011.
"Lacey is a center midfielder but I can potentially see her giving us some depth on the back line as well," said Grech. "She is very good on the ball and sees the game very well. Her ability to possess and keep the ball is what makes her stand out. She is able to find things that you don't see often in youth players."
Despite the defensive heavy class, coach Grech thinks the group can provide depth to the squad that can help offensively in the long run.
"This class is defensively-minded in position, but without he forethought that we attack as a team. I think this year with our class we will be able to keep our outside backs fresh both in game and throughout the season, which will really help us push the level of play."
The Broncos are in the midst of their spring schedule with their final home game of the season on April 7 against Oakland at Waldo Stadium at noon.