Rebels Sign Four For The Fall|
Feb. 14, 2005
LAS VEGAS - Four players have signed national letters of intent to play women's soccer for UNLV starting in the fall of 2005, head coach Dan Abdalla announced on Thursday. The class includes two players that have played on the Mexican National Team.
The Rebels bring in three players from California. First is Nancy Guitierez of Fontana, a 5-8 midfielder for AB Miller High. Guitierez has a total of 14 full international caps with the Mexican National Team, and was a member of the Mexican squad in the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens, and was also on the U19 Mexican Team in the CONCACAF Tournament. "To have a player like Nancy sign with us shows the steps we have taken to become a bigger name program and she will make us be a better team immediately," noted Abdalla. "Her talent is as strong as anyone in the conference, and we expect her experiences in the Olympics and on the international state to rub off on the entire team."
Rebecca Juarez, a native of Riverside, Calif., is the second Rebel recruit that played on the CONCACAF Mexican Team along with Guitierez. A 5-4 midfielder for Jurupa Valley High, she has a total of 10 international caps with the Mexican National Team. "Rebecca is a player who keeps getting better and better, and moved herself into the starting lineup of the Mexican National Team," said Abdalla. "Her technical ability under pressure and ability to get forward should add another look to our attack we haven't had here before."
The third California recruit is Ciera Neros from Alta Loma. A 5-10 goalkeeper for Alta Loma High, she was first team all-league as a junior at Alta Loma High, and also earned all-league honors last fall for the volleyball team. "One of our top priorities was to find a goalkeeper to push Jenna Huff in her final season, and we knew we found our keeper when Ciera decided to play soccer in college rather than volleyball," said Abdalla. "Her size and athleticism make her a great addition to the team and ensure her a great career here at UNLV."
Haley Partridge of Springfield, Ill., round out the recruiting class. A 5-10 forward, she was an all-state and all-conference honoree last year for Springfield High. "Haley is a great athlete with a huge upside," said Abdalla. "Her ability in the air will add an instant threat we currently don't have."
"Overall, I think this class will go up as one of our best ever," continued Abdalla. "The experience these players have on the international level is such a great asset that their impact will be felt immediately. Obviously our success in winning the MWC and going to the NCAAs has let the top players know that we are a great option to play for, and these players will help ensure our ability to compete for more championships in the upcoming year."
UNLV turned in the best season in school history in 2004, finishing with a 12-5-2 record while winning its first-ever Mountain West Conference regular season championship, and earning its first-ever trip to the NCAA Tournament, where the Rebels fell to San Diego 1-0 in double overtime.