Women's Soccer Welcomes Class of 2022 On National Signing Day
BALTIMORE - Loyola University Maryland women's soccer will welcome its Class of 2022 when several high school seniors announce their intentions to join the Greyhounds on Wednesday, Feb. 7.
Meet the new members of the program and learn more about their backgrounds here at 2018 Signing Day Central!
"Coach Dempsey, Coach Ruhl and I have spent the last two years watching this group and evaluating their development as youth players and we are confident in their quality both on and off the field," said Head Coach Naomi Meiburger. "Each player individually brings something different to the group, and collectively they will be a strong class during their four years at Loyola. They all play for top club teams around the country against the best competition that will prepare them for their collegiate careers. To have a group of individuals who are competitive players, high-achieving students and quality people is the main reason they are an excellent fit for Loyola and our Jesuit values. I know our coaching staff are anxious to get this group here over the Summer and start working with them."
Information about the Class of 2022 will be posted below throughout the day on Feb. 7:
Gillian Borton - Midfielder/Defender - Charlottesville, Virginia - St. Anne's-Belfield High School
Before Loyola: Attends St. Anne's-Belfield School in Charlottesville, Virginia... Will compete for St. Anne's-Belfield for her senior season in the spring of 2018... Earned First-Team All-State Division I honors from the Virginia Independent School Athletic Association (VISAA) in 2017 and second-team honors in 2016... Named St. Anne's-Belfield Most Valuable Player in 2016 and 2017... Garnered All-LIS recognition both seasons, as well... Helped the team win the state title in 2014... Played club soccer for SOCA, helping the side to a VYSA State Cup Champion in 2016... The team reached the State Cup finals in 2013 and 2017 and the semifinals in 2015... Won the Italy International Cup Championship in 2015... Member of the Virginia '00 ODP State pool from 2012-2017... Won the Virginia '00 ODP Region 1 Tournament in 2017.
Personal: Daughter of Genger and Michael Borton... Has an older sister, McKenna... Earned High Honor Roll recognition from 2014-2018 and was a member of the Backpack Buddies Board from 2012 until 2018... Also member of the St. Anne's-Belifield School Disciplinary Council Prefect from 2015-2018.
Coach Meiburger on Borton: "A tough, resilient player, Gillian is also very versatile in her ability to play multiple positions. She is a workhorse in the midfield, pressing players and helping to win the ball for her team. Gillian does a lot of the dirty work that is needed to be successful in the college game, and I believe she will develop into a great collegiate player during her four years at Loyola."
Sarah Bayer - Forward - Merrick, New York - W.C. Mepham High School
Before Loyola: Attends W.C. Mepham High School in North Bellmore, New York... Scored 57 goals and had 20 assists over her four-year career for the Pirates... Led Nassau County in points with 60 as a senior in 2017, scoring 24 goals and assisting on 12 while earning All-New York Class A honors... Led the Pirates to an undefeated conference title and berth in the Nassau County semifinals in 2017... Was a three-time All-Nassau County honoree in 2015, 2016 and 2017 and earned Conference AB3 Player of the Year recognition her final season from the Nassau County Girls Soccer Coaches Association... All-Long Island selection... Had her junior year cut short due to injury after scoring five goals and assisting on four... Tallied 14 goals in both her freshman and sophomore seasons... Two-year captain for the Pirates... Played club soccer for East Meadow Soccer Club ECNL... Member of the New York State ODP team from 2015-2016 and the Region I ODP team... Selected for the Region I ODP Tournament team that competed in Costa Rica in 2016... Played varsity lacrosse as a freshman and sophomore, earning All-County Honorable Mention as a senior... Also was a three-year member of W.C. Mepham's varsity track and field team for three years, helping the 4x400-meter relay team qualify for the Penn Relays.
Personal: Daughter of Katherine and Christopher Bayer... Has two siblings, Grace and Ryan... Member of the National Honor Society and French Honor Society at W.C. Mepham... Member of the school's honor roll all four years.
Coach Meiburger on Bayer: "It's great to add a goal-scoring player like Sarah to our group. She has a real nose for goal and is a threat to score at any moment. Sarah is also a player who will defend from up front and press defenders, something which is a rare attribute for an attacking player. She will be a great addition to our squad and it will be great to see her develop at Loyola."
Grace Li - Goalkeeper - Miami Lakes, Florida - Monsignor Edward Pace High School
Before Loyola: Attends Monsignor Edward Pace High School in Miami Gardens, Florida... Played two years of soccer for Monsignor Pace, starting at goalkeeper as a freshman and helping the team to the district playoffs... Played for Boca United FC in the ECNL from 2014-2017 and Boca United FC in the U.S. Development Academy in 2017-2018... Member of the Florida ODP pool from 2013-2014 and helped Boca United reach the Disney Showcase finals in 2015... Recorded three-consecutive clean sheets at the ECNL Phoenix National showcase in 2016... Led Boca United in saves in 2016-2017... Senior captain for Boca United in 2017-2018... Trains with Tracy Noonan at Dynasty goalkeeping and coached by Chris Sousa and goalkeeping trained by Juan Olivares.
Personal: Daughter of Alice and Phillip Li... Has an older brother, Braden, who is a textile engineering research fellow at North Carolina State University... Senior Class President and AP Scholar... President of Monsignor Pace's Future Business Leaders of America... Principal's Honor Roll all four years... Member of the National Honor Society, as well as honor societies for math, science and English.
Coach Meiburger on Li: "Grace is a technically sound goalkeeper who is truly a complete player with both her shot-stopping skills and ability to play out of the back with her feet. She has a great vertical jump and athletically will be ready to compete immediately. I expect her to come in and add quality to the solid group of goalkeepers Loyola has been producing over the years."
Nicole Thomas - Midfielder/Forward - Park Ridge, New Jersey - Park Ridge High School
Before Loyola: Attends Park Ridge (New Jersey) High School... Three-year standout for the team before playing for DA NYCFC in 2017... Scored 54 goals and had 28 assists in her three years for Park Ridge... Was a three-time All-North Jersey Interscholastic Conference First Team honoree in 2014-2016... Received NJIC All-Patriot Division First Team and All-State Group 1 Second Team honor sin 2016... Earned All-Bergen County Third Team honors in 2016 from the Bergen County Coaches Association... Member of the ODP program in 2013-2014... Tallied 24 goals and 15 assists in 2016 after scoring 13 and six in 2015... Had 17 goals and seven assists as a freshman in 2014... Led Park Ridge to the 2014-16 NJIC Patriot Division Championship and the 2016-2017 New Jersey Interscholastic Athletic Association State Sectional Championship for North 1 Group 1... Also ran track for Park Ridge, earning Bergen County Record Athlete of the Week honors for the sport in May 2016 after breaking school and county records in a meet while winning several sprint events... Qualified and ran in the National Track Championships in 2017... Plays club soccer for NYCFC in the U.S. Soccer Development Academy.
Personal: Daughter of Kathy and Nelson Thomas... Has one brother, Michael... Member of Park Ridge's honor roll all four years of high school.
Coach Meibuger on Thomas: "Nicole is a gifted athlete and a dangerous 1v1 player in the attacking third. She is difficult to defend against and will certainly make defenders work to get the ball off her. I am excited about the future for Nicole and the potential she has to be a quality player for the Greyhounds."
Sarah Mirr - Midfielder/Forward - Pleasanton, California - Foothill High School
Before Loyola: Attends Foothill High School in Pleasanton, California, where she is finishing her senior season in 2018... Four-year varsity player for the Falcons... As of late January, has scored 12 goals and assisted on four during her senior season... Earned All-East Bay Athletic League honors in 2016 and 2018... Team captain as a senior... Named a Scholar-Athlete for the CIF North Coast Section in 2015, 2016 and 2018... Helped her team reach the North Coast Section playoffs all four years of high school and advance to the quarterfinals in 2016... Was the East Bay Athlete of the Week in 2018 by \Tri-Valley Community Television... Played club soccer for the Pleasanton Rage... Played in the ECNL from 2014-2018... Team captain for the Rage... Led the team to qualify for the ECNL Champions League after winning the ECNL Bay Area Division Championship... Was a 2016 North American Qualifier... Top Drawer Soccer Combine Girl's Best XI for NorCal... IMG Gatorade Player of the Week... Member of the ODP NorCal State Travel Team... Invited to the ECNL Player Development Program in 2016... Member of the ECNL PDP for the Northwest in 2016.
Personal: Daughter of Daphyne Thomas Mirr and James R. Mirr... Received the African-American Student Achievement and Excellence Cultural Leadership and Civic Inclusion Award... Was a Girls' Soccer WorldWide Ambassador, travelling to Paraguay during Thanksgiving of 2016 and 2017 to run camps and distribute clothing donations through the non-profit... Was a project manager for Girls' Soccer WorldWide Service... Member of the Pleasanton Chapter of the National Charity League... Assistant coach for a U-11 club team.
Coach Meiburger on Mirr: "Sarah has a quiet way about her off the field, but is just the opposite on the field. Her work ethic and tenacity to get after the game really stood out to us during the recruiting process. She is a versatile player who I expect to come in and help us in our attack. I have seen her score goals and set up goals for her teammates and I am looking forward to her doing the same for the green & grey."
Ariel Tillman – Forward – Merrick, New York – Sanford H. Calhoun High School
Before Loyola: Attends Sanford H. Calhoun High School… Scored 11 points on a pair of goals and tally seven assists as a senior in 2017… Earned All-Class honors while helping Calhoun to a conference title and playoff title game appearance… Played for East Meadow Soccer Club ’00 and was a three-year member of the ODP Region One team… Also played four years for the Rough Riders… Ran winter and spring track at Calhoun for three years.
Personal: Daughter of Jeanette and Ronald Tillman… Has one sister, Alexis… Was a four-year Advanced Placement Scholar Award winner at Calhoun and member of the National Honor Society.
Coach Meiburger on Tillman: “Adding another attacking threat like Ariel who can score from tight angles and is a dangerous one-v-one player gives us a lot of depth up front. I am looking forward to working with Ariel and integrating her into our squad next year.”
Kaleigh Gallagher – Forward -- Gilberstville, Pennsylvania – Boyertown Area Senior High School
Before Loyola: Attends Boyertown (Pennsylvania) Area High School… Led the team in goals and assists and was in the Pac 10 Conference top-10 in both categories as a senior in 2017… Earned All-Pac-10 First Team honors and was named to the All-Mercury First Team… Team captain… Helped Boyertown win the Pac 10 Championship… As a sophomore, led the Pac 10 in goals and was fifth in the league in assists, helping the team to another conference title… Played club soccer for FC Pennsylvania Strikers… Also played varsity lacrosse for Boyertown.
Personal: Daughter of Stacy and Peter Gallagher… Has one younger sister, Madison… Honor roll student.
Coach Meiburger on Gallagher: “We are excited about the opportunity to add Kaleigh to our class for next fall. Her accomplishments both in the classroom and on the field align with our vision for success in the Patriot League, academically and athletically. Kaleigh is a real competitor and a winner who has the versatility to play multiple positions for us.”