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Austin Peay Lady Govs Soccer signs eight on National Signing Day

Posted By News Staff On Saturday, February 9, 2013 @ 2:00 pm In Sports | No Comments

APSU Sports: Austin Peay Women’s Soccer

Austin Peay State University Lady GovsClarksville, TN – Austin Peay State University women’s soccer team has put together a deep class for its 2013 National Signing Day, adding eight in-state players for the fall season.

“The most important goal for this class was to bring in people that can not only come in and make an impact right away, but that can help us in the future,” said head coach Kelley Guth. “We felt that this class will give us some players that will help us not only now but down the road.

Austin Peay Women's Soccer. (Courtesy: Austin Peay Sports Information)

Austin Peay Women’s Soccer. (Courtesy: Austin Peay Sports Information)

“Our depth became a huge issue for us late in the year last year. I think this class helps us in that area and will push our returning players for playing time.”

Katie Emig of Knoxville, TN joins the Lady Govs in goal; she will provide depth behind all-conference keeper Haylee Shoaff and sophomore Nikki Filippone. She starred for FC Alliance 95, which ranked third in Tennessee and was 2011 USYS State Champion.

“It was important for us to add a third keeper,” Guth said. “It was not a fun situation last year, worrying that we didn’t have another option if people went down. I think she’ll push Haylee and Nikki to get better; it will probably be the most talented goaltending group we’ve had here.”

Heather Murphy was an FC Alliance 96 star. The Farragut High School (Tennessee) defender, who hails originally from Philadelphia, PA, led a stingy defense that finished 23-1-1 last season, with 17 shutouts. Her backline efforts earned her 2011 TSWA All-State Class AAA honors.

The Lady Govs beat out Belmont and Lee College for Kate Siddall, a midfielder from White Bluff, TN. She led Creek Wood High School in scoring during all four years of high school, culminating in a school-record 82 career goals.

Austin Peay added another midfielder in Murfreesboro, TN native Emily Anderson, a 2012 state finalist with Siegel. She was TSWA and THSSCA All-State in 2012 and started 84 of 87 games during her career, with 12 goals and eight assists playing primarily in holding midfield.

Merritt Monger of Oak Ridge, TN joins the Lady Govs as the next in a line of Austin Peay athletes in her family. Her father Scott was a football player for the Govs from 1981-85, and her mother Leigh was a cheerleader. Monger scored 26 goals for Oak Ridge High School last season on her way to All-State honors.

Three Lady Gov signees (Natalie Smith, Monger and Anderson) were TSWA Class AAA All-State selection last season. Smith is a product of a Soddy Daisy High School program that won three straight sectional championships and appeared in three state tournaments. Smith scored 10 goals and added 14 assists in her senior season.

“We hope a lot of these athletes come in and make an immediate impact,” Guth said. “It’s going to be very competitive, which is what we were striving for with this class.”

Guth plucked four athletes from FC Alliance 95: Monger, Smith, Emig and Brianna Avitabile, a center-midfielder from Hixson, TN. She prepped at Baylor, where she was all-region in 2012 after leading the Bears to the TSSAA Division II-AA State Tournament.

Rounding out the Lady Govs signing class is Mary Ruth Locastro from Collierville, TN. She’s one of eight Division I signees hailing from the Lobos Rush club team. She was a Commercial Appeal Best of Preps honoree and All-State performer for Saint Agnes Academy from 2009-12, scoring 28 goals and assisting on 32 in her career.

“The state of Tennessee has a lot of talent,” Guth said. “As our program has grown, it’s offered us more opportunities to attract more players to be a part of our program. Our recent team success has made us a much more attractive school for prospective student-athletes.”

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