Introducing the women's soccer recruiting class of 2018

By Jacob Knabel on Jan. 16, 2018 in Women's Soccer

SEWARD, Neb. – Head coach Greg Henson and the Concordia University women’s soccer program have announced a 2018 incoming recruiting class of nine members (although Henson has not ruled out the possibility of adding more). The future Bulldogs, all current high school seniors, represent seven different states: California (two), Nebraska (two), Colorado (one), Kansas (one), Minnesota (one), Missouri (one) and Virginia (one). The two Nebraska natives are Brynne Baird of Omaha and Ashley Thalken of Columbus.

The nine new student-athletes will join the program this fall and look to strengthen the women’s soccer team’s defense of its 2017 GPAC regular-season title. Under Henson’s direction, Concordia has won three total GPAC championships, reached the national tournament twice, advanced to the GPAC postseason final four-consecutive seasons and has won a combined 60 games over the past four years.

“I think the expectations have definitely changed both internally and externally just based on our on-field success,” Henson said. “That’s definitely helped in the recruiting process. We definitely make sure our recruits and potential recruits understand what we’re all about and what our vision is for the program. We want to continue to push this program forward.”

Henson will ask the incoming group to help uphold the lofty standard that has been set while exemplifying the positive character traits that are expected of Bulldog student-athletes. Henson and the 2018 squad must replace a senior class that will leave as the winningest four-year group in school history.

“This the most diverse and deep recruiting class we’ve had so far,” Henson said. “The talent from top to bottom is very exciting for next year and the years to come. We definitely addressed some needs that we have with some of the losses we were dealt through graduation. I think we have some strong players that can come in and help us right away compete for and win conference championships.”

2018 class of Concordia women’s soccer recruits

(As of Jan. 16, 2018)


Hometown: Omaha, Nebraska
High School: Millard West High School
Club Team: Gretna Prima Green 00G
Position: Midfielder / Defender
Expected Major/Area of Study: Undecided
Athletic/Academic Honors: 
--Omaha FC Sportsmanship Award 2015
--Academic letter recipient (2015, 2016, 2017)
--Athletic letter recipient (2015, 2016, 2017)
--2017 Academic All-State Award (Lincoln Journal Star)
HS/Club team success:
--2017 State Cup Champions (Gretna Prima Green 00G)
--2015 Nebraska State Champions (Millard West High School)
Why Concordia?
When I visited Concordia, I was impressed with the campus and felt it was somewhere I could see myself pursuing my college career.


Hometown: San Diego, California
High School: Valhalla High School 
Club Team: San Diego Futbol Club
Position: Midfielder / Forward
Expected major/Area of Study: Criminal Justice
Athletic/Academic Honors:
--Lettered all four years in varsity soccer
--Named team captain in 2018
--School’s youth sheriff advisory group representative
HS/club team success:
--Led team to San Diego Section CIF Championship game in 2015
--Won CIF championship game in 2016
--Participated in the California State Regional games in 2016
--Finalist in the San Diego Section CIF in 2017
Why Concordia?
I was born and raised in San Diego but was motivated to attend college out of state. I knew this was a place I could continue my education and further my soccer experience at a higher level while feeling at home.


Hometown: Hastings, Minnesota
High School: Hastings High School
Club Teams: Hastings HFC United and Woodbury Soccer Club
Position: Forward / Winger
Athletic/Academic Honors:
--Two-time captain of high school soccer team
--Three-year starter and letter winner (soccer)
--Three-time all-section player (soccer)
--Three-time all-conference player (soccer)
--Raider Award recipient (soccer)
--Team MVP Award (soccer)
--Four-time letter winner (hockey)
--Academic Honor Roll
HS/club team success:
--Schwan’s USA Club Champs 2016
--MYSA State Champs 2016
--State Cup competitor
--US Club Cup Regionals competitor
Why Concordia?
I was really impressed with the close-knit community created at Concordia. The academic, athletic, psychological and spiritual support at Concordia was apparent from my first visit. At Concordia University, I know I can fulfill my goals and dreams and “Go Higher.”


Hometown: Marshall, Missouri
High School: Marshall High School
Club Team: Boonville Soccer Academy
Position: Midfielder
Expected Major/Area of Study: Marketing
Athletic/Academic Honors:
--School records: most career goals (55), most career points and most assists in a single season
--NCMC All-Conference (three times)
--All-District (three times)
--All Regional (twice)
--All-State Class 2 (sophomore year)
--Honor Roll all four years and ranked in the top ten of class
Why Concordia?
I was drawn to Concordia by the friendly atmosphere and the competitiveness of the soccer program.


Hometown: Aurora, Colorado
High School: Eaglecrest High School
Club Team: Colorado Storm
Position: Defender / Midfielder
Expected Major/Area of Study: Criminal Justice and Business
Athletic/Academic Honors:
--Three-year varsity letter award recipient for soccer
--Honor Roll all semesters of high school
--DECA State Qualifier
--Three-year academic letter award recipient 
--Student Attorney for City of Aurora Municipal Court 
--Four-year varsity letter award recipient for gymnastics 
--All-league honorable mention for bars 
HS/club team success:
--Presidents Cup runner up
--Stenger Tournament runner up
--Kelvin Norman champion  
--Finalist in Colorado Storm Premier Cup 
--2015 Elite League champions 
--2017 Select League champions
--2014 high school gymnastics state champions
--2016 high school gymnastics state runner up
--2017 high school gymnastics state runner up
Why Concordia?
The size and atmosphere of the school, as well as the professors and majors Concordia has to offer.


Hometown: Overland Park, Kansas
High School: Blue Valley High School
Club Team: Kansas Elite 
Position: Midfielder
Expected Major/Area of Study: Undecided
Athletic/Academic Honors:
--Varsity letter three years soccer (assuming letting in spring of 2018)
--Varsity letter three years for cross country
--National Honors Society (junior and senior year)
--National Art Honors Society (senior year)
--Tiger Pride (leadership at school)
--Tiger Mentor (mentor at school)
HS/club team success:
High school regional champs in 2016 and 2017
Why Concordia?
I was drawn to Concordia because I want to enjoy my college experience and build relationships with my professors and peers in ways that I could not do at a big university.


Hometown: Alpine, California
High School: Granite Hills High School
Club Team: San Diego United
Position: Goalkeeper
Expected Major/Area of Study: Pre-Veterinarian
Athletic/Academic Honors:
--Scholar athlete
--Coaches award
HS/club team success:
CIF semifinalist
Why Concordia?
When I visited the school I was really impressed by the facilities and how nice everyone was.


Hometown: Columbus, Nebraska
High School: Columbus High School
Club Team: Nebraska Select
Position: Forward
Expected Major/Area of Study: Business
Athletic/Academic Honors:
--Four-year starter and letter winner
HS/club team success:
--2017 high school state playoff appearance
--Real Colorado Cup and Showcase Group winner
--Kearney Invitational champions
--Norfolk Invitational champions
--GSI Showcase Division winner
--Midwest Champions Cup champions
--Nebraska League Fall Premier II champions
--Real Colorado Cup & Showcase Silver I champions
--Dakota Alliance Invitational champions
--GSI Showcase Division winner
--Nebraska League Fall Premier champions
Why Concordia?
Concordia has great academic and athletic programs. It feels like home and it is a very fitting place for me to be!


Hometown: Leesburg, Virginia 
High School: Loudoun County High School 
Club Team: currently Washington Spirit DA and previously Loudoun red 98/99 
Position: Goalkeeper 
Expected Major/Area of Study: Undecided
HS/club team success:
--Two-time high school state champions
--High school district champions (twice)
--High school regional champs (twice)
--Quarterfinalist in super Y nationals (Washington spirit super Y team)
--Loudoun red 98 team won Virginia states and went to regionals as well as played in the national league; placed second in the Disney Showcase during national league playoffs (2014-2016)
--Loudoun 99 appeared in the quarterfinals of states 2016
Why Concordia?
When I visited Concordia, met the people and saw the facilities, I realized then that I wanted to become a Bulldog.