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All-Colorado women 2009

December 16, 2009 | 11:59 pm 2
By George Tanner

From left: Lara Campbell, DU; Becca Mays, Metro State; Nikki Marshall, CU; Kayla Mitchell, Mines; and Nichole Kluk, Fort Lewis. (photos by Jonathan Ingraham, Tom Auclair and George Tanner/ ColoradoSoccerNow.com)

I was very thankful in 2009 to see many excellent college soccer teams and players on the field in Division I and II. And while watching them, I can’t help but be amazed at their skill and quality.

It was during the spring, when the W-League was in full swing, that I got the idea to put together a list of the best 11 players that we covered in that league. So when the college season started, the idea was still fresh in my mind. And today we present the final results for all the teams that play women’s college soccer in this state.

I have to admit that we didn’t get to cover every team in the state this fall. We made a valiant effort, but we fell short of covering every men’s and every women’s college team.

Sometimes our choices of what games to cover were influenced by trying to see as many teams as possible.

Sometimes our choices were based on the expected quality of a particular match. For example, after watching a Metro State women’s game, we opted to leave Auraria Field, where the Roadrunners men’s team was about to play, so we could cover Fort Lewis at Mines. We never got back to see the Metro men, and that was disappointing. But on that day, it was the right choice.

Sometimes our coverage was influenced by the weather, and our coverage always was limited by how many places I physically needed to be on a given week.

So, with that in mind, ColoradoSoccerNow.com is proud to announce its 2009 All-Colorado women’s team, as chosen by me with input from photographers Tom Auclair and Jonathan Ingraham. We’ve chosen to go with a 4-4-2.

Kayla Mitchell, Colorado School of Mines: This could’ve gone any of four ways. Colorado’s Nikki Marshall is probably the best player in the state. One Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference coach told me Metropolitan State College’s Becca Mays is the best player in the nation in Division II. Metro’s Kat Gosztyla is probably the best defender in the state. But Mitchell lit up the scoreboard in being chosen the RMAC player of the year, and her Orediggers advanced farther in the NCAA tournament than anyone expected. Farther than any team sport at Mines ever has. And even though her nickname is Pocket (is that for Pocket Rocket or Pocket Hercules?), Mitchell was huge. We’ll get into her stats a little later, but the Mines co-captain was one of the biggest reasons the Orediggers did so well in a storybook season.

Frank Kohlenstein, Colorado School of Mines:
Kohlenstein coaches Mines’ women’s team AND its men’s team. If that’s not enough to win this award on its own, consider this: The women finished 19-5-1 overall and were second in the Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference at 13-3. They advanced to the Division II quarterfinals. Had they not been matched up against eventual champion Grand Valley State, who knows how far they might’ve gone. The men finished 15-3-4 overall and were 11-2-1 in conference play, and the only losses came against national champion Fort Lewis College. 2009 was an amazing year for this humble and wise teacher of the game.

Kathryn Gosztyla, Metro State:
She’s a beast, a big, fast, strong, aggressive beast. She was the Roadrunners’ co-captain. Even as a center back, she finds a way to push forward. The best defender in the state. If I were a Women’s Professional Soccer scout, I’d be learning how to spell Gosztyla.

Nichole Kluk, Fort Lewis College: The RMAC defender of the year. Helped limit Mitchell to only one assist in the conference tournament as FLC knocked off No. 2 seed Mines.

Courtney Ryan, Metro State: Left back uses excellent field vision to move well, pass well and defend well. Good with the ball at her feet or at her opponent’s feet. Moves forward aggressively, recovers quickly.

Kalley Mahaffey, Regis: Oddly, we’re going with another left back. There are Division I teams in this state that would love to have a left back this dynamic in their lineup. She’s fast, good in the air, moves forward with passion and has defensive instincts that will frustrate a player trying to hold the ball.

Becca Mays, Metro State: She can beat a defender with a one-touch turn. She enlivens the game with a dramatic run forward. And, it’s a cliche, but she improves the quality of the players around her just by being on the pitch. She often played up top, but we’re penciling her in at midfield, where she could have a greater influence.

Nikki Marshall, CU: She played defense and striker for the Buffaloes, but we saw her in the midfield quite a bit with the Colorado Force in the spring. She is a force wherever she lines up, and we’ll put her here. And we hope to see her someday in Women’s Professional Soccer.

Mariah Johnston, University of Denver: Mo finished the season strong and was a big reason the Pioneers got better as the year went on. She was the Pioneers’ second-leading scorer (21 points), and she led the team with 13 assists. She had three winning goals.

Jamie MacArthur, Fort Lewis College: A fine playmaker for an excellent team. Creative, steady, consistent, unflappable. Despite all the talent around her, MacArthur stood out on the field. Knows when a move forward, backward or sideways is the best option.

Kayla Mitchell, Mines:
Mitchell became the first women’s soccer player at Mines to earn All-America honors. She was named a Daktronics first-team All-American, the 2009 Daktronics Central Region player of the year and the RMAC player of the year. A unanimous first-team All-RMAC pick, she led the RMAC in goals (30), points (69) and game-winning goals (14) and was tied for fourth in assists (9). During the conference season, Mitchell was the RMAC offensive player of the week four times and was selected as the RMAC women’s athlete for the month of October. She was a Daktronics and NSCAA first-team All-Central Region pick. She had five hat trick, including a four-goal performance against CSU-Pueblo in which she established Mines single-game records for points (8) and goals. For her efforts in the classroom, Mitchell earned CoSIDA/ESPN the Magazine second-team Academic All-American honors and was selected as the 2009 RMAC women’s soccer academic player of the year. Mitchell also earned CoSIDA/ESPN the Magazine first-team academic All-District and first-team academic All-RMAC honors. Un-freaking-believable.

Kaitlin Bast, DU: She started 23 of 24 games and was the Pioneers’ leading scorer with 12 goals and 31 points. Her seven assists were second on the team. The freshman wasn’t shy about shooting: She led the team with 80 shots, 25 more than Bria Beardsley, who was second. She will be a joy to watch for the next three seasons.

Lara Campbell, University of Denver:
Athletic and unbelievably composed for a freshman. When we interviewed her just moments after giving up a goal to Nikki Marshall in an overtime loss to CU in early September, she had been a collegiate soccer player for a very short time. Despite a heartbreaking finish against an in-state rival just moments earlier, she was as poised and comfortable during the interview as she was for nearly 110 minutes in goal that day. She started all 21 games in which she played, allowing 18 goals for a GAA of 0.88. She made 84 saves, had nine shutouts and finished with a 15-4-1 record.

Christine Schmelzle, Fort Lewis; Briana Schulze, Colorado School of Mines; Liana Signorile, Colorado Christian.

DEFENSE: Laurel Reinhardt, Fort Lewis; Nicole Renko, Metro State; Laura Wayland, Northern Colorado.

MIDFIELD: Amy Barczuk, CU; Kelly Butler, CU; Kassidy Fitzpatrick, CU; Katie Horn, Regis; Brittney Lyman, Colorado College; Madison McQuilliams, Metro State; Liz Oba, Mines; Megan Woodworth, Mines.

FORWARD: Tiffany Brown, Colorado College; Hayley Hollenga, Fort Lewis; Stephanie Patterson, Air Force.

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  • Siz said:

    What about Jessica Stark? Defender for CSM, 7 goals, anchored the CSM defense probably the best defensive player in the air in the RMAC. Second Team All-Region.

  • George Tanner (author) said:

    i think lauren reinhardt is the best player in the air that we saw all year.

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