Feb. 7, 2007
AUBURN, Ala. -
It was another solid signing day for the Auburn soccer program as the Tigers signed eight outstanding high school seniors to National Letters of Intent to join the Tigers for the 2007 season, head coach Karen Hoppa announced on Wednesday. The class comes from four states and addresses all areas of play as AU has inked a goalkeeper, two defenders, two midfielders and three forwards to help replace the three-time SEC West Champion class that finished their careers last November in the NCAA Tournament. The signees are Skylar Brinegar from Alpharetta, Ga., Lindsey DonFrancesco of Marietta, Ga., Heather Havron of Winter Park, Fla., Jessi Lovern of Powder Springs, Ga., Ashley Marks of Atlanta, Addison Ragsdale of Birmingham, Samantha Towne of Royal Palm Beach, Fla. and Jaime Wheeler of Austin, Texas.
Brinegar is a 5-9 goalkeeper from Alpharetta High School where she played for Allison Tubiak. A member of Judson Hamby's GSA 90 Phoenix Red club team, which also produced Auburn standouts Ronda Brooks
, Lauren Stewart
and Jenn Johnson
, she has been a member of the Georgia State '89 ODP team from 2002-06. A team captain in 2006 at Alpharetta, she was the 2005 and 2006 team MVP. A two-sport star that also excelled on the basketball court where she earned offensive player of the year accolades in 2005, she is the daughter of Kenneth Brinegar, Jr., and Shawna Andrews.
"Skylar is a strong, athletic goalkeeper with great shot-stopping ability," Hoppa said. "She continues a long tradition of talented GSA players coming to Auburn. She will come in and challenge Allison Whitworth for time in the net."
DonFrancesco is a 5-6 forward from Tom Stone and Todd Shulenberger's Tophat 07 Gold club team and Jim Haskin's team at Pope High School, where former Tigers Chrissy Culver and Ronda Brooks
and current Tiger Monica Afanador
also played. A member of the Georgia ODP State Team from 2001-04, she has helped Tophat to four consecutive club state championships and a second-place finish in the Region Premier League in 2006-07. The captain of her team at Pope, she has earned Cobb County honorable mention accolades while also spending time with the Silverbacks PDP/Super Y Team. She is the daughter of Steve and Donna DonFrancesco.
"Lindsey is a powerful but fast forward and is the type of forward that punishes opposing defenses. She can play in the center forward position or out on the wing with equal success," Hoppa said. "She will be a great addition to our front line."
Havron is a 5-5 forward/midfielder that plays for Kim Montgomery and Jim Powell and the Seminole and IUS Hayasa. A senior at Winter Park High School where she played for Graham Naylor, she was the team's top scorer as both a sophomore and junior and also earned Varsity Rookie of the Year honors in her first season on the team. A 2005 and 2006 All-Metro First Team choice and a Michelle Akers All-Tournament Team selection in 2005, she was the Winter Park team MVP in 2006. A Florida State '89 ODP team member from 2004-06, she also earns high marks in the classroom where she has won the Presidential Academic Award, is a member of the National Junior Honor Society, was the SGA Senior Class Secretary and the SGA Junior Class Vice President. Also a star middle distance runner for the Winter Park track team, she is the daughter of Rick and Sandy Havron and her uncle is former Auburn basketball star, John Mengelt.
"Heather has tremendous speed and can run the flank with anyone," Hoppa said. "She compliments that speed with a solid technical foundation and can play any wide position. Her vasatility will be invaluable to our 2007 team."
Lovern is a 5-9 forward that heads to Auburn from Harrison High School. Also a member of Tom Stone and Todd Shulenberger's Tophat 07 Gold team, which produced current Tigers Lizzie Hamersly
and Monica Afanador
, she was a member of the Georgia State ODP team in 2002, was a team MVP in 2004 and earned First Team All-County in 2004 and 2005. Helping Tophat to a second-place finish in the Region Premier League in 2006-07, she is a National Honor Roll selection in 2004 and 2005. She is the daughter of David and Lisa Lovern.
"Jessi is a tall, fast forward with great one-v-one ability. She has tremendous goal-scoring and goal creating ability. She will bring our attack a new dimension by being equally dangerous with her back to the goal or facing defenders," Hoppa said.
Marks is a5-6 forward/midfielder from Blessed Trinity Catholic High School who played with fellow signees Lindsey DonFrancesco and Jessi Lovern for Tophat 07 Gold and Tom Stone and Todd Shulenberger. A 2005 Region 3 ODP Team Pool player, she played on the 2005 ODP National Championships' fourth-place team, the 2003 USYS National Championship semifinals team and the 2006-07 Disney Classic championship team. A five-year member of the Georgia ODP, she played for the 2005 Region Premier Champion and led the league in assists. A 2006 Georgia High School All-County First Team choice, she scored the game-winning goal in the state championships last season. A team captain for the 2006 and 2007 seasons, she has been a four-year starter at Blessed Trinity, where current Tiger Kara Kasten
also played. A 2004 Georgia High School and Georgia State Cup Champion, she led the Concord Super-Y in goals that same season. She is the daughter of Terry and Cecile Marks.
"Ashley brings great athleticism and experience to our team. The level of competition she has had with both her ODP and club teams have prepared her to be successful in the SEC. She is extremely dangerous running the flank and can play multiple positions for us," Hoppa said.
Ragsdale heads to Auburn from Spain Park High School, where she plays for Robert Starr, and Vestavia Attack '89 Blue where she is a 5-4 midfielder on Jason Lockhart's team. A Birmingham News All-Metro selection and an Alabama Super All-State selection, she was also a member of the Alabama State '88 ODP team from 2003-05. The younger sister of current Tiger Summer Ragsdale
, she was a 2004 High School All-State MVP for a team that won the state championship and also helped Vestavia Attack to three consecutive club state championships. She was also Spain Park's Freshman Athlete of the Year in 2003 and the Junior Athlete of the Year in 2006 as well as the Shelby County Player of the Year. A member of the National Honor Society, she was Spain Park's Student of the Year in 2003 and 2006 and ranks in the top five percent of her class. She is the daughter of Bill and Karen Ragsdale.
"Addie is one of the top 2007 recruits from the state of Alabama," Hoppa said. "She is a smart, technical center-mid with great composure on the ball. Academically, she is one of the top students from Spain Park High School."
Towne joins the Tigers from Terry Robinson's team at Suncoast Community High School. A 5-7 defender/midfielder, she also plays for Steve Nugent and Team Boca, which is also where current Tigers Kori Hoelscher
and Jenni Prescott
played. A Florida State ODP Team member from 2001-04, she is a member of Suncoast's honor roll. She is the daughter of Don and Judy Towne.
"Sam is the anchor of the Team Boca defense. She is a tenacious defender with a commanding presence but is also very good with the ball at her feet," Hoppa said. "She is an extremely smart player who will be a great addition to our back line."
A 5-6 defender/midfielder from Jeanny Aldrete's team at Westlake High School and Jim Wain's Lonestars '89 Premier Red, Wheeler is a two-time high school all-district first team selection and the 2006 high school district offensive MVP. A two-time member of the South Texas ODP State team, she led Central Texas in total points with 28 goals and 24 assists in 2006 for Westlake. A two-time Academic All-District selection, she is the daughter of Heath and Lynne Wheeler.
"Jaime compliments her tremendous athletic ability and speed with a sound technical foundation. She has the speed and versatility to play anywhere in the back or midfield," Hoppa said. "Her work rate and desire to succeed will bring her great success on the Plains."