The individual awards have been streaming in since the Pronghorns made it to their first NJCAA Division I Women’s Soccer Championship this year.
Pronghorn freshman defender Sarah Williams was named a second-team All-American, and freshman forward Jaycie Greene was named as a honorable mention All-American on Thursday. The two are the first All-American selections in the three-year history of the Gillette College women’s soccer program.
“It’s a pretty big-time deal for us. It’s the 33 top players in all of JUCO Division I,” Pronghorns coach Nate Ulness said. “For us to get two, that’s a pretty big deal.”
Williams, a Lehi, Utah, native, had nine goals and four assists and started all 21 games this past season. She’s known for her ability to kick the ball farther and harder than anybody on the team. Williams scored from about 40 yards out on a free kick in the first game of the national tournament. She was named to the Region IX first team as well.
“I wasn’t expecting, really, any of it,” Williams said about her All-American nod. “Good coaches definitely helped and having a good team that will work well with each other.”
Greene, also of Lehi, led the team in points with 21 goals and seven assists to garner national attention. Greene also was named the Region IX Freshman of the Year.
“It’s pretty exciting, and it definitely shows that all of the hard work that I put into it really paid off to get me up there with the rest of them,” Greene said. “It really makes our program look a lot better as we have girls come in and be able to get these awards and really show that we’re a top national team.”
Greene, Williams, sophomore midfielder Kelsey Hogan, sophomore Irie Elliot and sophomore midfielder Karlie Valdez were the four Pronghorns named to the Region IX first team this year. Valdez, from West Haven, Utah, was named the Region IX Player of the Year for her seven-goal, eight-assist season.
Elliot has committed to play at NAIA Hastings College in Nebraska. She is the only sophomore so far committed to play at a four-year university, Ulness said.
“All our sophomores are getting looks and even some of our freshmen,” Ulness said about the increase in recruiting prospects on the Pronghorns team.
Freshman forward and Gillette native Emma Jarvis, who was second on the team with 15 goals and first on the team with 12 assists, was named to the Region IX second team.
The Pronghorns finished the 2019 season with a 17-3-1 record and as one of the top 10 teams in the country. Last season, Gillette College finished 7-6-2 record and ended the season in the Region IX semifinals.