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Arizona Soccer Program Signs Six to Letters-of-Intent
By: Arizona Athletics
Release: February 17, 2005
Photo Courtesy: Arizona Athletics
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Tucson, Ariz. ?- The University of Arizona women’s soccer program has signed six student-athletes to National Letters-of-Intent, head coach Dan Tobias announced on Wednesday.  This recruiting class is Tobias’ second at Arizona. Tobias’ first recruiting class was part of a Pac-10 Championship team that went 15-6 on the season starting six freshmen, while making the program’s first ever NCAA Tournament appearance. “We are extremely excited about these six student-athletes becoming a part of the U of A family. They will most definitely help us continue to build on our program’s new tradition of success.”


            Brianna Caceres hails from Canyon Country, Calif. where she attended Canyon High School. As a defender/midfielder, she was a four-year letterwinner and a third team all-conference selection and a second team all-city selection in her junior season. Caceres is a starting defender in a three-back system for So Cal United Premier soccer club, a team that won the national championship in 2004. The team is coached by Kristy Walker. 


            “I chose to attend the University of Arizona because I believe it has a great soccer program,” Caceres said. “The coaching staff is wonderful and the school had a great atmosphere and environment. It was also what I was looking for academically.”


“We are real excited about having Bree as a part of the U of A family,” Tobias said. “She is a very tough, hardnosed defender. She plays on the defending national champion So Cal United team and she’s had to mark many of the top strikers in the country. She has a solid background and very good youth coaching with Kristy Walker.”


Gianna DeSaverio is a Littleton, Colo. native. She attended Chatfield High School earning four letters as a forward for the 2004 state championship soccer program.  Now competing in her senior season, she was named to the all-conference team in her freshman, sophomore and junior seasons. Additionally, last season she was named the 2004 Player of the Year as well as the Most Valuable Player of the 2004 State Game as a junior. She also earned All-Region and All-State honors as a junior in the 2004 season. This January she was chosen by the NSCAA as a high school All-American. She is currently a member of the Colorado Rush club team that is coached by Tim Schultz and Mark Dougherty. The team has won state championships in the 2002, 2003 and 2004 seasons.


“I am excited to be attending the University of Arizona and compete in Division I soccer,” DeSaverio said. “It will be a great place for me to accomplish my goals.”


“Having Gianna as a part of our program is going to be great,” Tobias explained. “She is a very good striker with great pace and a tremendous work rate. She finishes very well and we are extremely excited to have her in our environment. She plays for an excellent club team with the Rush and outstanding coaches in Tim Schultz and Mark Dougherty.” 


Christina Hughes is a forward/midfielder from Phoenix, Ariz. Hughes attended Mountain Pointe High School and was a four-year letter winner who was named to the all-city team as a sophomore and a junior. As a freshman, she earned honorable mention all-region honors followed by first team all-region honors in her sophomore and junior seasons. She was also honorable mention all-state as a junior. Hughes currently competes for the ’87 Sereno Golden Eagles, coached by Mitch Murray, a team that has been Arizona State Cup champions for the past three seasons.


“The soccer team at the University of Arizona is one big family,” Hughes explained. “I felt at home when I visited. I am looking forward to playing for Dan, Harold and Lisa.”


“Christina is going to be a very good college player,” Tobias said. “She is not only the fastest player in her entire club, but she has the versatility to play in the midfield or up front. She comes from a great youth background with Sereno and plays for a very knowledgeable and experienced coaching staff led by Les Armstrong and Mitch Murray.”


Another California native, London King comes from Santa Monica, Calif. where she currently attends Santa Monica High School. In her sophomore season as a Forward, she was named first team All-Ocean League as well as the Ocean League Player of the Year. King is also a starting forward for So Cal United, the 2004 national championships, coached by Kristy Walker.


“I’m really excited to be able to attend the University of Arizona,” King said. “The coaching staff and all the players were awesome. The school was beautiful. After my visit I couldn’t see myself going anywhere else. I know I will be getting a great education.”


“I think London’s potential as a college player is unlimited,” Tobias explained. “She is a tremendous athlete who is very explosive. She’s grown so much in the last two years as a youth player and that is a credit to her work and the guidance of her club coach.”   


One of two Arizona natives, Savanah Levake comes from Phoenix where she attends Mountain Ridge High School. Levake earned first team all-conference as well as all-region honors in her sophomore, junior and senior seasons. Additionally, she earned second team all-state honors in her sophomore and junior seasons, with her senior season still in progress. She competes for the Cisco 87 club team under Head Coach Barb Chura. She was a part of the Cisco team that won the state championship in 2001.


“I’m looking forward to being able to play with all the girls on the team,” said Levake. “I’ve been on one team for a very long time now and it will be nice to part a part of a different team. It’ll be fun to be a part of the defending Pac-10 Championship team.”


“We are very excited to have such a solid defensive player in Savannah,” Tobias said. “She can play any of the four back positions. She is so steady and poised as she has a great future ahead of her here at the U of A. She has also had the benefit of a great youth experience with Barb Chura.”


Rounding out the group is Erika Olson, a defender from Greenwood Village, Colo. Olson attends Cherry Creek High School, where she has earned four letters competing in soccer. She competes for the Real Colorado in Denver, a team that was the runner up in the 2004 Colorado State Cup and is coached by Rafael Amaya.  


            “I am pumped to play for the University of Arizona because I think the school and the team will bring out my best abilities,” Olson explained. “I really enjoyed the coaching staff, the girls and especially the nice weather.”  


            “Erika is a very solid and steady defender who will get better with each and every season,” Tobias explained. “She has an excellent work rate and is just an all-around good player. She has had a great experience playing for Real under Rafael Amaya.”


            Tobias, who’s team’s performance helped him earn coach of the year awards from the Pacific-10 Conference, the West Region and Soccer America’s National Coach of the Year, is very excited about his second recruiting class at the University of Arizona. “We have really improved ourselves at all positions and more importantly, we have added student-athletes that are outstanding people with the highest level of class, integrity and pride. They have the right mentality to allow our program to earn more respect and to help us reach even greater heights. It would be a huge understatement to say that we are excited about these fine, young people now representing one of the nation’s outstanding colleges, the University of Arizona.”


 The 2004 Cats set or tied 31 school records, including most wins (15), most Pac-10 victories (6) and fewest opponent goals scored (11).  Additionally, the Wildcats earned the program’s first Pac-10 Championship and first-ever trip to the NCAA Tournament.



Arizona Women’s Soccer ?- 2005 Signees


Name                 Pos.    Ht.   Hometown                High School                   Club Team

Brianna Caceres        D       5-5     Canyon Country, Calif.  Canyon High School              So Cal United Premier

Gianna DeSaverio     F       5-4      Littleton, Colo.            Chatfield Senior High             Colorado Rush

Christina Hughes    MF/F   5-4      Phoenix, Ariz.              Mountain Pointe H.S.            Sereno Golden Eagles

London King           F       5-6      Santa Monica, Calif.      Santa Monica High School      So Cal United Premier

Savanah Levake        D      5-6       Phoenix, Ariz.              Mountain Ridge H.S.            Cisco

Erika Olson             D      5-5       Greenwood Village, Co. Cherry Creek High School      Real Colorado                                            


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