Huskies Announce 2009 Recruiting Class

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GO HUSKIES

GO HUSKIES

Feb. 18, 2009

 

DeKalb, Ill. - The Northern Illinois women’s soccer team announced its 2009 recruiting class Wednesday, as nine student-athletes signed National Letters of Intent to play for the Huskies in the 2009-10 season. The class includes a pair of locals from Sycamore High School in Sara Cervenka and Nici Newquist along with two others from Illinois, Shelbi Johnson and Mary Usedom. The Huskies also brought in Kayra Thompson, Nia Gilbert, Natasha Kelley, Lauren Eberts and Kaylee Heller, who come from Kansas, Minnesota, Nebraska, Ohio and Wisconsin, respectively.

"We're excited about our 2009 class," said NIU head coach Carrie Barker. "We're adding athleticism and depth to an already talented group. Their versatility is really going help strengthen the overall team."

 

2009 Huskie Recruiting Class
Player Position Height Hometown  High School Club Team
Sara Cervenka F/M 5-8 Genoa, Ill. Sycamore IYSA – Sycamore United/Northern Illinois Futbol
Lauren Eberts F 5-4 Pickerington, Ohio Pickerington North Columbus Blast/Fox Valley Strikers
Nia Gilbert D/F 5-6 Golden Valley, Minn. St. Louis Park Bangu Tsunami
Kaylee Heller D 5-7 Madison, Wis. Madison West Madison 56ers/Wisconsin State Team ODP
Shelbi Johnson M/F 5-5 Bolingbrook, Ill. Neuqua Valley Naperville Soccer Association
Natasha Kelley D/M 5-5 Blair, Neb. Blair Gladiator/Toro/ODP Nebraska
Nici Newquist D/M 5-5 DeKalb, Ill. Sycamore Dactyls Soccer Club
Kayra Thompson D/M 5-5 Overland Park, Kan. Blue Valley Northwest KC Comets Select 90/91
Mary Usedom D/M 5-6 Rockford, Ill. Guilford Sirens Soccer Club

 

  
Sara Cervenka
Blincow

Position: Defender/Midfielder

Height: 5-8

Hometown: Genoa, Ill.

High School: Sycamore

Club Team: IYSA – Sycamore United/Northern Illinois Futbol

Club Coach: Mike Hermann

Blincow action

High School: Earned three varsity letters with the senior season still in to come … DeKalb Barbfest Tournament MVP sophomore and junior year … Named to all-conference team sophomore year after scoring four goals and assisting one … Garnered honorable mention all-sectional honors sophomore year … Has five career goals and five assists to help lead her team to three straight regional championships … Was team captain of the varsity basketball team during senior year and was team Defensive MVP as a junior.

Personal: Member of the IYSA- Sycamore United Soccer Club/Northern Illinois Futbol Club under Coach Mike Hermann … Daughter of Steven and Samantha Cervenka … High school teammate of NIU signee Nici Newquist … Plans to major in nursing … Born September 2, 1990.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Lauren Eberts
Blincow

Position: Forward/Midfielder

Height: 5-4

Hometown: Pickerington, Ohio

High School: Pickerington North

Club Team: Columbus Blast FC/Fox Valley Strikers

Club Coach: Mohamood Razack/Dave King

Blincow action

High School: Named Ohio Capital Conference Player of the Year as a senior … Earned first team all-area, first team all-conference and second team all-state honors after recording six goals and four assists as Team MVP and captain in her senior season … In 42 career starts she tallied 10 goals and eight assists ... Was a second team all-conference selection in her junior year … She helped the Panthers to three straight conference championships and sectional championships … Earned four varsity letters, three at Pickerington North and one at St. Charles East (Ill.)

Personal: Member of the Columbus Blast FC club team since 2006 under coach Mohamood Razack and reached regionals in 2008 … Member of Fox Valley Strikers from 2001-2006 under coach Dave King … Parents are Howard and Lisa Eberts … Plans to major in elementary education and minor in biology … Born May 30, 1991.

 

 

 

 

Nia Gilbert
Blincow

Position: Defender/Midfielder

Height: 5-6

Hometown: Golden Valley, Minn.

High School: St. Louis Park

Club Team: Bangu Tsunami

Club Coach: Danny Storelin

High School: Four-year varsity soccer letterwinner at St. Louis Park H.S. … Made the all-conference team all four years … Earned all-state honors as a senior and sophomore … Named team captain in her senior year and was team’s MVP four times … Scored seven goals as a senior … Tallied two goals in her junior year … Helped team to a North Surburban Conference championship as a sophomore, scoring three goals and two assists … Scored 11 goals as a freshman … Also received four varsity letters in track … Broke the school’s triple jump record and qualified for state as team captain in her senior season … Garnered all-conference honors in all four years of competition.

Personal: Member of Bangu Tsunami soccer club since 2005 under current coach Danny Storelin … Daughter of Ken and Sylvia Gilbert … Intends to major in communication and minor in Spanish … Born June 2, 1991.

 

Kaylee Heller
Blincow

Position: Forward/Midfielder

Height: 5-7

Hometown: Madison, Wis.

High School: Madison West

Club Team: Madison 56ers/Wisconsin State Team ODP

Club Coach: N/A

Blincow action

High School: Was a three-year varsity letterwinner and starter at Madison West H.S. and has been named team co-captain for her senior season … Was an honorable mention all-conference selection as a junior, compiling seven goals, two assists and 16 points with a hat trick vs. Sauk Prairie … As a sophomore, she helped Madison West H.S. to a 7-0-1 first-place finish in the Big Eight Conference and won the city championship as she totaled five goals (one game-winner), one assist and 11 points … Scored six goals (two game-winners) with one assist and registered 13 points in her freshman season to help her team to a regional championship … Earned three varsity letters in basketball and has 438 career points in the middle of her senior season … Named team captain for her senior year and was a pre-season all-conference and all-metro honorable mention selection … Was an all-city honorable mention performer as a junior and sophomore … As a freshman, she helped her team to a regional championship … Lettered in volleyball for two seasons, helping her team get to regionals as a junior … Helped Madison West H.S. to a regional championship in her sophomore year.

Personal: Member of the National Honor Society … Played for the Madison 56ers soccer club and in 2005 was part of a team that was the State Cup runner-up and State Premier League runner-up … From 2006-08, she was the Mid-West Regional League team leading scorer … Played for Wisconsin State Team ODP from 2002-08 and won regional championships from 2003-08 … Daughter of Scott and Mary Beth Heller … Sister Stacy played soccer at Michigan State University where she was a two-time Big Ten Academic All-American and is now an assistant coach for the Spartans … Born March 29, 1991.

 

Shelbi Johnson
Blincow

Position: Forward/Midfielder

Height: 5-5

Hometown: Bolingbrook, Ill.

High School: Neuqua Valley

Club Team: Naperville Soccer Association

Club Coach: James Tonner

Blincow action

High School: Has earned two varsity letters with senior season yet to come … Scored 13 goals, 15 assists and 41 points as a junior to earn honorable mention all-conference honors … Named the team’s Offensive Player of the Year and won Team Academic Award as a junior … Helped Neuqua Valley H.S. to back-to-back regional championships from 2007-08 … Had two key assists to help team to a 2008 sectional semi-final win … Scored four goals, three assists and 11 points as a sophomore, including a made penalty kick in the state sectionals … Was named team captain and Offensive Player of the Year on the freshmen team as she tallied 18 goals, 11 assists and 29 points.

Personal: Captain of the Naperville Soccer Association team under Coach James Tonner ... Daughter of Kim Mabbott … Intends to major in marketing … Born November 15, 1990.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Natasha Kelley
Blincow

Position: Forward/Midfielder

Height: 5-5

Hometown: Blair, Neb.

High School: Blair

Club Team: Gladiator/Toro/ODP Nebraska

Club Coach: Dan Flynn/Tom Christensen and Brian Leahy/David Hawkins

Blincow action

High School::Earned three varsity letters with senior season still to come … Named honorable mention All-Eastern Midlands Conference by Enterprise Publishing during freshman and junior seasons … Earned Best Foot Skills award on team as a junior … Was a first team all-conference selection by Enterprise Publishing during sophomore season and garnered honorable mention all-state honors from the Lincoln Journal Star and Omaha World Herald along with being named Offensive MVP as she tallied seven goals and seven assists … Helped Blair High School to finish as runners-up in the district championship as a sophomore.

Personal: : Daughter of Karlin and Shelley Kelley … Played club soccer for Gladiator Club from 2001-03 under Coach Dan Flynn … Participated in State Cup in all three years and in 2003, helped Gladiator be semi-finalists at the Harvest Moon and Azzuri Invites … Was a member of Toro Club under Coach Thomas Christensen and Brian Leahy from 2003-2009 … Won 2004 KC Legends Invite championship … In 2005, was a semi-finalist at the Nebraska Championships and State Cup … Was runner-up at the 2006 Azzuri Invite and Yorkfest Tourney and finished third in the State Cup … In 2007, was a State Cup finalist and finished second at the Azzuri Invite … Participated on ODP Nebraska club team under Coach David Hawkins from 2006-2008 … Won 2008 Regional II championship held in DeKalb, Ill. … Plans to major in teaching and minor in art … Born on May 15, 1991.

 

Nici Newquist
Blincow

Position: Defender/Forward/Midfielder

Height: 5-5

Hometown: DeKalb, Ill.

High School: Sycamore

Club Team: Dactyls Soccer Club

Club Coach: N/A

Blincow action

High School: A three-year varsity letterwinner and has been named team captain for her senior season … Named the 2008 Daily Chronicle Girls Soccer Player of the Year … Helped Sycamore to three straight Regional championships from 2006-08 … Was team captain as a junior, totaling seven goals and eight assists, scoring the first goal in semi-sectional vs. Rockford-Boylan … Led Sycamore in assists all three years … Named to DeKalb Barbfest all-tournament team and was a first team All-Western Sun Conference performer all three years … Garnered IHSSCA first team all-area honors in her sophomore and junior seasons … Scored 10 goals and seven assists as a sophomore, scoring a pair of goals in only 11 minutes of action vs. DeKalb … Was an IHSSCA all-area honorable mention as a freshman, scoring seven goals and 11 assists … Owns school records for most assists in a season (2006 – 11) and in a career (26 with senior season yet to come).

Personal: Daughter of Howard and Tamara Newquist … Brother Christopher played varsity soccer at Rockford College … Brother Chadwick played varsity soccer for the University of Dubuque … Brother Colby played varsity soccer for Kishwaukee Community College … High school teammate of NIU signee Sara Cervenka … Intends to major in business … Played for Dactyls Soccer Club (Rockford, Ill.).

 

Kayra Thompson
Blincow

Position: Defender/Midfielder

Height: 5-5

Hometown: Overland Park, Kan.

High School: Blue Valley Northwest

Club Team: KC Comets Select 90/91

Club Coach: Neil Kelly

Blincow action

High School: Four-time varsity letter-winner … Was a second team All-Eastern Kansas League selection by Kansas City Star during junior season … Scored one goal on EKL state-qualifying squad as a junior and named team MVP of Missouri-Kansas Tournament … Played 17 matches on fourth-place squad during sophomore season … Tailed two goals during freshman campaign on varsity squad that finished second in conference … Earned EKL Scholar Athlete honors all three seasons … Earned varsity basketball letter during sophomore year and named Defensive Player of the Year on undefeated freshman squad.

Personal: Daughter of Herbert and Belinda Thompson … Participated in club soccer for KC Comets Select 90/91 from 2004-2009 under Coach Neil Kelly and was member of 2006 Kansas State Cup Champions … Helped the Comets be Kansas State Cup Finalists in 2004, 2005, 2007 and 2008 and Midwest Regional Champions form 2004-08 … Cousin Bri Devereaux played for the Central Missouri State University women’s soccer team … Cousin Jarrett Devereaux played for the University of Cincinnati men’s soccer team … Cousin Philip Cosey participated on the Track and Field team at Texas Southern University … Intends to major in nursing … Born on November 21, 1990.

 

Mary Usedom
Blincow

Position: Forward/Midfielder

Height: 5-6

Hometown: Rockford, Ill.

High School: Guilford

Club Team: Sirens Soccer Club

Club Coach: Peter Glon

Blincow action

High School: Earned three varsity letters and graduated early to enroll at NIU … Named to IHSSCA all-sectional team in her junior season as she totaled three goals, 15 assists and 21 points while scoring the lone goal in Guilford’s conference championship victory … Received first team all-conference honors as a sophomore, recording six goals, five assists and 17 points … Was team’s Offensive Player of the Year in her sophomore season and was named an first team all-conference performer … Earned Rookie of the Year honors as a freshman when she tallied five goals, five assists and 15 points … Was a varsity basketball letterwinner as a sophomore and freshman and was named Team MVP in her freshman season … Earned varsity golf letter as freshman and won team’s Rookie of the Year award.

Personal: Member of the Sirens Soccer Club under Coach Peter Glon from 1998-2008 … Daughter of Rick and Nancy Usedom … Intends to major in physical therapy … Born March 8, 1991.

 

-NIU-


 

 

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