BEMIDJI, Minn. - Bemidji State head soccer coach Jim Stone today announced the signing of five student-athletes to National Letters of Intent for the 2004 season. Each member of BSU's 2004 spring class is from Minnesota.
Stone announced the signing of midfielders Megan
Wallner (Bemidji, Minn.) and Jessica Ploeger
(Ramsey, Minn.), forward Sara Susick (Blaine,
Minn.), defender Emily Prall (White Bear
Lake, Minn.) and another midfielder, Kaitlin Wolff
(East Grand Forks, Minn.). Stone hopes to add one or two additional
signees at a later date.
BSU was seeking to achieve primarily two goals with this year’s class.
“We wanted to increase our strength and ability to play physical on the field,” Stone said. “We also wanted to add one or two players that could increase our goal output.”
Bemidji State strengthened its midfielder crew with the addition of Wallner and Ploeger.
“I have been watching Megan Wallner for over two years and every time I watched her play I came away more impressed with her ability. She will immediately give us a physical player with great vision, her 16 assists last season attest to that. I also think she represents our community well and she is showing how out-state soccer is growing,” Stone remarked. “Jessicsa [Ploeger] will give us an instant physical presence, as she is very strong and has a high level of skill. She’s also very versatile and will be able to help either in the back or the midfield.”
Stone believes the addition of Susick gives the Beavers a strong offensive threat at forward.
“Having coached Sara before, I know she has the potential to put the ball in the net at the Division II level. When I coached her as a sophomore she was the ninth-leading scorer in the Twin Cities metro area,” Stone recalled.
Even with the strong emphasis on offense in the 2004 class, defensive talent was added as well.
“Emily [Prall] gives us a player that has a lof of skill and is used to playing in pressure situations like the state tournament in a pressure position like sweeper,” Stone said.
Wolff comes from a relatively young soccer program much like Bemidji State and Stone hopes she can play a role in the building of BSU’s program.
“Kaitlin is a player who has a great love for the game and her work rate and attitude will be a positive force for our team,” Stone said.
Overall, Stone was pleased with his second recruiting class at Bemidji State.
“Only time will tell, but I think this group addresses our needs very well. We brought in a couple players that bring a physical presence and in time I think this class will help out with our goal productivity,” Stone said.
Bemidji State capped off the 2003 season with a school record five wins, after posting four victories in each of the past three years. BSU was 5-13-1 overall and 2-6-0 in Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference play.
|2004 Spring Soccer Signing Class|
|Jessica Ploeger||M||5-4||Fr-HS||Ramsey, Minn. (Anoka HS)|
|Emily Prall||D||5-3||Fr-HS||White Bear Lake, Minn. (High)|
|Sara Susick||M||5-3||Fr-HS||Blaine, Minn. (Spring Lake Park HS)|
|Megan Wallner||M||5-7||Fr-HS||Bemidji, Minn. (High)|
|Kaitlin Wolff||M||5-5||Fr-HS||East Grand Forks, Minn. (Senior HS)|
• Jessica Ploeger (M, 5-4, Fr-HS); Ramsey, Minn.
A four-year soccer letterwinner at Anoka High... Captained team in junior and senior year...Earned Rookie of the Year award in 2000... Honorable-mention All-Conference in 2002 and All-Conference in 2003... Also earned two varsity letters in track and basketball...
• Emily Prall (D, 5-3, Fr-HS); White Bear Lake,
Two-year varsity starter for White Bear Lake High... All-Conference selection in 2003, team Defensive Player of the Year in 2002 and 2003... Helped lead White Bear Lake High to a third place finish at Minnesota AA state tournament... A member of White Bear High's "A" Honor Roll and a member of the National Honor Society...
• Sara Susick (M, 5-3, Fr-HS); Blaine, Minn.
(Spring Lake Park HS)
Three-year All-Conference award winner in North Suburban Conference... A four-year soccer letterwinner and Spring Lake Park High's career leader in both single season and overall points... Earned one letter in softball...
• Megan Wallner (M, 5-7, Fr-HS); Bemidji, Minn.
Under head coach Kris Van Wilgen-Hammitt she helped her team compile a 48-20-6 record over four years... Captained her squad in the 2002 and 2003 seasons and was a three-time team MVP and two-time All-Conference selection... Helped lead her team to a second place finish in 2002 Section 8AA semifinals... Also was a four-year letterwinner and two-time captain in basketball... Team finished fourth in state in 2001... Earned three academic letters and a member of the National Honor Society as a senior...
• Kaitlin Wolff (M, 5-5, Fr-HS); East Grand
Forks, Minn. (Senior High)
Named East Grand Forks Senior High's Most Dedicated player in 2002 and 2003... Letterwinner in cheerleading, figure skating and track... Also a member of the the National Honor Society...