The Southwest Minnesota State women's soccer team signed seven high school student-athletes and one transfer Wednesday, the first day student-athletes are allowed to sign national letters of intent.
After heavily recruiting players from California in his 2012 recruiting class, SMSU head coach TJ Buccholz stayed closer to home for this year's group. Among the eight players that signed with SMSU Wednesday, three are from Minnesota, two are from South Dakota, one is from Iowa and one is from Wisconsin. Naomi Peterson, a defender from Fort Myers, Fla., is the only player from outside of the Upper Midwest.
Peterson is one of three defenders the Mustangs signed. She will be joined by Haley Burns of Madison, Wis., and Remington Sonsalla of Burnsville.
Alexandra Pantze is the lone transfer among SMSU's 2013 recruiting class. A graduate of Shattuck St. Mary's High School in Faribault, Pantze spent the 2011 and 2012 seasons at Division I University of South Dakota, where she made 15 starts.
"Alex comes from a very rich soccer background and comes with excellent college experience having played at the Division I level," Buccholz said in a press release. "Our goal was to add some impact players at the midfield level with this recruiting class and Alex definitely has the ability to do this for our team. Alex is very strongly technically and has an excellent work rate on and off the ball. Having these elements will add a great dynamic to our midfield for the upcoming season."
Other incoming midfielders include Morgan Weyer-Coates from Rapid City, S.D., and Jessica Engebretson from Watertown, S.D. Engebretson can also play forward.
Natalie Zobel, a forward from Eagan, joins the team after having played for one of the top club teams in the state of Minnesota.