Meet the newest soccer talent

By The Beacon | April 10, 2013 9:00pm

Unsatisfied with a second round NCAA Tourament exit, the Pilots signed eight recruits to add depth and skill to an experienced team with nine returning starters.

Allison Wetherington (Photograph courtesy of Darington School Academy)

By Taylor Tobin, Staff Writer

Following a loss in the second round of the NCAA Tournament last season, the Pilots women's soccer team has been restocked in talent for the fall with a recruiting class ranked fifth in the nation. Eight new players will join the Pilots next season, including four from Oregon and Washington, proving to be a class with a range of talent and experience.

"We knew coming through our recruiting process that this class was going to be huge for us," Head Coach Garrett Smith said. "Rankings obviously don't mean a ton, but it's always nice to be recognized. It's definitely exciting and it shows the talent and notoriety this class brings in with them."

Five out of the eight girls have played for Olympic Development Programs (ODP) and all eight have played for club teams, national teams or both.

"I definitely think it's going to be a more competitive atmosphere. I think it will be beneficial for us that a lot of the players have played at a higher level already," junior midfielder Ellen Parker said. "Their [experience] will definitely give them an advantage coming onto the team."

What to Expect Next Season

The incoming freshman will join the team for training and practice this summer to prepare for the season. Parker said the summer is a great opportunity for the freshmen to get to know the team.

"The whole team gets a chance to build chemistry and play together, and the freshman get the opportunity to earn a spot. I don't know them individually that well yet, but I think that all eight are great players," Parker said. "It will be interesting to see which ones rise to the occasion and earn minutes and potentially a starting spot. I think there are probably four or five of them that will be competing to do so."

The team will have an even spread of age next season, with eight seniors, eight freshman and a combination of eight juniors and sophomores. The Pilots will return nine senior starters from last season including goalkeeper Erin Dees and forwards Michaela Capelle, Kaila Cameli and Amanda Frisbie.

"With only two seniors, our [junior] leadership got really strong and that wide-eyed enthusiasm and genuine excitement that freshman bring coming into a college program kind of balances us out," Smith said. "I think it's a nice mix and definitely a year where I'm going, 'I don't know if I want to play the Pilots this year,' if I'm an opponent right now."

Allison Wetherington

A midfielder from Acworth, Ga., Wetherington is currently with the U-20 National Team after playing with the U-18 National Team for the last year and a half. Wetherington played with the ODP Region III Team and was a member of the Georgia ODP for five years. For the past three years, she competed with her Concorde Fire Soccer Club team.

Danica Evans

A forward from Lakewood, Colo., Evans played for the Colorado ODP team for three years and was a four-year letter-winner at Lakewood High School. Evans played club for the Colorado Rush and the Colorado Edge. She has played in the Elite Clubs National League (ECNL) since 2009 and is currently the leading national goal-scorer in the league.

Mikayla Elmer

A midfielder, Elmer also played for the ODP Region IV team. From West Haven, Utah, Elmer was a four-year letter-winner at Fremont High School and was the team's offensive MVP. She was selected to the Salt Lake Tribune All-First Team and played club for the Rampage and the Utah Avalanche.

Ellie Boon

A forward, Boon hails from Washougal, Wash. and has played with the Oregon ODP since 2007 and the ODP Region IV team since 2009. Boon played for the U-18 National Team this year and was the Portland Timbers Female Player of the year in 2011. Boon was a three-year letter-winner at Washougal High School but took her senior year off to focus on club.

Ariel Viera

Forward Viera is another Oregon native from Scappoose, Ore. She scored 116 career goals for Scappoose High School, tying for second in goals scored for an Oregon prep women's soccer player behind only Tiffeny Milbrett, who tallied 131 goals for Hillsboro. Viera played for FC Portland for nine years, named to All-Cowapa League First Team for all four high school years, was a three-time league Player of the Year and a three-time first-team All-State 4A selection.

Parkes Kendrick

A Portland native midfielder, Kendrick is a four-year letter-winner from Grant High School and was Portland Interscholastic League 6A Special District Player of the Year. Kendrick played for the Portland Soccer Academy and won the 2012 state title with FC Portland along with Viera.

Madi Hall

A tough defender and also from Lakewood, Colo., Hall played for the Colorado ODP team for four years. Hall played for the Region IV ODP Team for two years and for the Colorado Rush club team, alongside fellow recruit Evans. She was team captain at D'Evelyn High School and was selected for Jeffco All-Conference. Hall is currently in the USA national team pool.

Alyssa Edenstrom

Edenstrom, a center back from Olympia, Wash., was a four-year letter-winner for Capital High School and All-League MVP in 2009 and 2011. Edenstrom played club soccer for Washington Premier, Slammers FC and South Central Crush/Puget Sound Slammers.

Danica Evans (Photograph courtesy of

Mikayla Elmer (Photograph courtesy of

Ellie Boon (Photograph courtesy of

Ariel Viera (Photograph courtesy of

Parkes Kendrick (Photograph courtesy of Grant High School)

Madi Hall (Photograph courtesy of

Alyssa Edenstrom (Photograph courtesy of