Wednesday, February 22, 2006


For Immediate Release
February 22, 2006


WILMINGTON, N.C. – UNC Wilmington head women’s soccer coach Paul Cairney has announced the signing of seven student-athletes to National Letters of Intent for the 2006-07 season.

Two forwards, Jenna Evans (Wilmington, N.C./Hoggard) and Erica Rodgers (Wallingford, Pa./Strath Haven), a pair of Canadian midfielders, Daniela D’Oria (London, Ontario/Catholic Central) and Shannon Robertson (Kitchener, Ontario/St. Mary’s), two defenders, Meghan Sayre (Virginia Beach, Va./Ocean Lakes) and Heather Froehlich (Charlotte, N.C./North Mecklenburg), and goalkeeper Jamie Balzarini (Holbrook, N.Y./Sachem North) highlight a well-rounded class.

“Our main goal for this recruiting class was to add depth and strength at each position,” said Cairney. “I am very excited about our new players, and I know that they will complement a very strong core group we have returning.”

Evans was named the Star-News Co-Player-of-the-Year in 2005, while earning All-State honors from the North Carolina Soccer Coaches Association. She was also named First-Team All-Region in 2004.

“Jenna is an outstanding athlete who has the ability to play several positions,” said Cairney. “Her speed and tenacity make her a force on the field. She has the potential to be an impact player for us immediately.”

Rodgers garnered Daily Times Player-of-the-Year honors in 2005 and was named First-Team All-Delco in 2004 and 2005. A member of Pennsylvania’s Olympic Development Program from 2001-2005, she also played on the FC Bucks Club team, which won the Pennsylvania State Championship in 2003 and 2004.

“Erica has excellent speed, both on and off the ball, and has the ability to score at the next level,” said Cairney.

D’Oria received Athlete-of-the Year honors at Catholic Central in 2004, and also was a member of the Ontario Provincial team.

“Daniela is a highly technical player and is excellent in one-on-one situations,” said Cairney. “She also has the ability to finish on set-pieces. She will complement our attack through the middle.”

Also a member of the Ontario Provincial team, Robertson attended the National Training Center in 2005.

“Shannon possesses the speed and athleticism to be a factor at this level,” added Cairney. “She is both technically and tactically quick, and I see her being able to play several positions in 2006.”

Sayre played with Beach FC, the 2003 and 2004 Virginia State Champions. In 2003, she participated with the Region I ODP and Adidas ESP/National Camp.

“Meghan is an athletic defensive player,” said Cairney. “She reads the game well and will look to play a role for us at the back.”

Froehlich earned All-State honors from the NCSCA in 2004 and 2005, and captured All-Conference accolades. She also played with the North Carolina ODP team from 2002-05.

“Heather is a great defender,” said Cairney. “She is calm and composed under pressure. She strikes the ball very well over distance and will look to push for a spot in the back next season.”

Balzarini played with the Empire State Team in 2004 and 2005, while serving as captain during her final season. She earned All-County honors in 2004 and 2005 and was a Super Y League member with the Long Island Raiders.

“Jamie is a strong ‘keeper,” said Cairney. “She has excellent technique and is very aggressive coming off her line. She will compete for our starting spot as a freshman.”

The Seahawks open up their season with a home scrimmage against Duke on Aug. 16 at 7 p.m. and begin their regular season at Appalachian State on Aug. 25.


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