Pali Roster Continues to Take Shape for 2010 Season
Pacific Palisades, Calif. (Tuesday, March 29, 2010) – Never before has a team won three consecutive USL W-League titles, and the two-time defending league champion Pali Blues Soccer Club has its sights set on accomplishing that feat. The team announced four additions today who it feels will play a pivotal role in 2010, returning Florida State defender Ella Stephan to the team and bringing on her college teammates Tiana Brockway, Tuija Hyyrynen (Finnish National Team) and Janice Cayman (Belgian National Team), pending international and league clearance.
“This is a great crew of players,” Blues head coach Charlie Naimo said of the new additions. “(Florida State head coach) Mark Krikorian is one of the best coaches in the world and signing four of the top players from his squad will expedite the process of getting the new team clicking early in the season. And you can bet they will come in ready to go.”
Stephan recently completed her sophomore season in Tallahassee and anchored a Seminole defense who marched to the NCAA Quarterfinals. The dual role player was a member of the U.S. U-17 and U-20 National Team sides and traveled with the U.S. U-23 National Team to a pair of matches in England last summer. A 2007 and 2008 Parade All-American, Stephan started for six seasons at Satellite High School on the eastern coast of Florida. During her senior year, she captained her high school side to a 2007 state championship and garnered many individual accolades for her efforts. She was selected the All-Space Coast Player of the Year, NSCAA/adidas High School Player of the Year, Wendy’s High School Heisman Award winner, and she was additionally named the Gatorade Player of the Year.
Brockway comes to the Blues after completing her freshman year in a Seminole uniform, starting alongside Stephan on the Florida State back line in all 25 matches the team played. She was tied for most minutes played on the Seminoles by logging 2326 minutes, and she also registered a pair of assists on the year. As a high school player, Brockway was a four-year letter winner at Stadium High School in Tacoma, Washington, and she served as team captain her last three years of school.
Hyyrynen brings additional international experience to the Blues in 2010, having played with the national team in her native Finland. She is also a defensive stalwart and co-captain with HJK Helsinki in the Finnish Premier League. She has earned 19 caps for the Finnish National Team and was named the Finnish League Player of the Year in 2008 and 2009. Before joining HJK, Hyyrynen spent time with Puotinkylän Valtti on the youth level and quickly began to rise up the ranks in her native country when she was still a teenager.
Cayman joins the Blues via Florida State and her native national team in Belgium. She will log her first NCAA minutes with the Seminoles this fall, but she has quickly made her impression felt in recent spring exhibitions. Cayman provided the game-winner last week for Florida State to lift her team over the Atlanta Beat of Women’s Professional Soccer, 2-1, and she scored another goal in a 3-2 victory over Nebraska. The Brasschaat native transferred to the Seminoles after beginning her college career at Catholic University Leuven in Belgium.
The Pali Blues begin the quest for a third consecutive W-League crown on Saturday, June 5th, when the team hosts the Santa Clarita Blue Heat at the Stadium by the Sea. Prior to that match, the Blues will host Santa Clarita in a game for three separate foundations on Saturday, May 22nd. The “Beat 627” initiative will also feature a Guinness Book of World Records attempt for most people juggling a soccer ball at one time. For more information on that historical evening, visit www.Beat627.com.
Season tickets for the Blues are also available now by visiting www.BluesSoccerClub.com.