Womens Soccer Players
Stay Busy During Summer
womens soccer players Jen Lewis (Birmingham, Ala.),
Esther Thompson (Waxhaw, N.C.), Lauren Whitt (Birmingham,
Ala.), Kari Boersma (Littleton, Colo.) and Kim Perkins (Highlands
Ranch, Colo.) stayed busy during this past summer in preparation
for the Commodores 2002 season, as they all took part
in the W-League. The W-League showcases some of best upcoming
freshman and present college players from around the country.
Lewis and Whitt, who are in their junior
seasons, and Thompson, who arrived at Vanderbilt as a junior
after playing her first two seasons at Texas A&M University,
played for the Charlotte Lady Eagles of the W-League this
summer. The W-League, which is a branch of the Ultimate
Soccer League, is for players presently playing collegiate
soccer or who graduated the prior scholastic year.
Lewis, Thompson, Whitt and the rest of the
Lady Eagles had an exceptional season making it to the W-League
Championship game, which was held in Vancouver, British
Columbia. Prior to the championship game, Charlotte and
the Vancouver Breakers battled through two 90-minute periods
and two 15-minute sudden-death overtime sessions before
the game was decided on penalty kicks. Lewis converted the
game-winning penalty shot to lead the Lady Eagles to the
the championship game, the Boston Renegades were able to
exploit the fact that the Lady Eagles had just played a
grueling contest the day before. The Renegades went on to
shut out the Lady Eagles, 3-0. Thompson, who was named the
W-2 Tournament Most Valuable Player in 2001 prior to the
W-1 and W-2 merging, was named to the 2002 all-tournament
As a team, Charlotte finished the season with
an 11-2 record. Lewis started and played in all 13 games
at midfielder, while Whitt was a back-up goalkeeper for
the Lady Eagles. Thompson was sensational in net all season
long as she started and played in 12 games recording an
11-1 mark. She recorded a goals against average of 0.90
while registering four shutouts.
Boersma and Perkins both played on the Denver
Lady Cougars team, which along with Charlotte played in
the W-League Final Four in Vancouver. Boersma spent the
majority of her time as a defender, while Perkins also played
defense before tearing her anterior cruciate ligament, which
has caused her to miss the entire 2002 Vanderbilt season.
Boersma has started and played every game this season (through
October 6) as a defender, and Perkins is expected to see
a lot of action when she returns next season.
Katharine Carroll (Brentwood, Tenn.) and junior Michelle
Bruntlett (Pensacola, Fla.) also had a summer full of soccer.
Both players were on the Tennessee state team that competed
for the regional championship in Dallas. While competing
in this tournament, the players were evaluated by the regional
Following the tournament, both players were
selected to participate in the U.S. Soccer Festival in Houston,
which showcased the top players from each region. Unfortunately
for Bruntlett, she was not able to play because of an injury.
However, Carroll had a successful run through the festival,
which led to her being selected to play in a pool game by
the U.S. National B-Team coaches. Carroll now has the opportunity
to the play from the national amateur team next Spring.
Despite being injured, Bruntlett also has the chance to
make the team as Carroll.
I enjoyed the opportunity to get the
extra games this summer in preparation for my final college
season, Carroll said. The amateur program provides
an opportunity for players who are too old to participate
in youth Olympic Development Programs to play against he
top players from other regions. It was nice just have another
chance to seen by coaches at higher levels.