Senior Midfielder/Forward Chelsea Hatcher
Aug. 11, 2011
By Brian Davis, Assistant Media Relations Director
KNOXVILLE, Tenn. - With a week of official training completed, the 2011 Tennessee Lady Vol soccer squad is readying for its first live match action by venturing to Birmingham, Ala., to face Southern Conference foe Samford on Fri., Aug. 12, at 7 p.m. ET in an exhibition at the Samford Soccer Stadium (capacity 1,200).
The Lady Vols and the Bulldogs have never faced each other on the pitch, while the Big Orange holds a perfect 13-0 record all-time against SoCon schools.
Under the guidance of Head Coach Todd Yelton, Samford returns seven starters and 12 total letter-winners off a 2010 squad that produced a 13-6-3 overall record and an 8-2-1 league mark on the way to a berth in the SoCon Tournament title match. Among the returnees for the Bulldogs are 2010 first team All-SoCon forward Sarah Wilkinson (five goals, one assist in 2010) and second team All-SoCon goalkeeper Alyssa Whitehead (0.79 goals-against-average, 84 saves, 12 shutouts in 2010), the school's career shutout leader (26).
Tennessee enters the new campaign returning 16 letter-winners from last season's squad that posted a 10-9-1 overall record while finishing third in the Southeastern Conference's overall standings at 7-3-1. Included are players who scored 32 of UT's 34 total goals and registered 89 of 97 combined points.
Among the returnees for the Big Orange (with last season's stat total in parentheses) are 2010 National Soccer Coaches Association (NSCAA) All-South Region and first team All-Southeastern Conference midfielder/forward Chelsea Hatcher (eight goals, four assists; Cincinnati, Ohio), forward Emily Dowd (seven goals, one assist; Gainesville, Fla.) and defender/forward Alexis Owens (one goal, two assists; Carmel, Ind.), experienced midfielders Kylie Bono (five goals, three assists; Yorba Linda, Calif.), Emily Shore (one goal, five assists; Gainesville, Fla.) and Amy Harrison (two goals; Winnipeg, Alberta, Canada), midfielder/forwards Caroline Brown (three goals, two assists; Hershey, Pa.), Sanna Saarinen (two goals, three assists; Espoo, Finland) and Lara Langworthy (Murfreesboro, Tenn.), midfielder/defender Tori Bailey (one goal, two assists; Fenton, Mich.) as well as battle-tested defenders Ali Hall (one goal, two assists; Hawthorn Woods, Ill.), Chelsea Kephart (1033 minutes in 2011; Cumming, Ga.) and Hannah Hut (Highlands Ranch, Colo.).
A high-profile group of 11 freshmen have now arrived at Rocky Top to bolster Tennessee Head Coach Angela Kelly's 27-member roster, including goalkeepers Julie Eckel (Cordova, Tenn.) and Hannah Steadman (Kinnelon, N.J.), forwards Iyana Moore (Marietta, Ga.) and Kaelyn Angelo (Oak Ridge, Tenn.), midfielders Brittney Wade (Houston, Texas), Tyler Law (Jacksonville, Fla.), Ashley Hartert (Marvin, N.C.) and Lexi Krause (Plainfield, Ill.) as well as defenders Alison Clarke (Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada), Allie Sirna (Solon, Ohio) and Carlee Dimry (Carlsbad, Calif.).
The Lady Vols officially christen their 2011 campaign on Fri., Aug. 19, in Lawrence, Kan., by battling the Kansas Jayhawks at 6 p.m. ET.
For the most up-to-date information on Tennessee soccer please visit www.UTLadyVols.com/soccer and follow @LadyVol_Soccer on Twitter.