CSUN Women's Soccer Enjoys Annual Alumni Reunion

NORTHRIDGE, Calif. --- The Cal State Northridge women's soccer program recently held its annual alumni reunion at Matador Soccer Field, bringing together a host of current and former Matador talent. Over 35 former players joined the current squad for a friendly contest and also enjoyed some time to catch up on life outside the pitch.

"It was great to see such a great group come back and interact with the current team," head coach Keith West said. "This upcoming season will be my seventh and it's remarkable to see how some of these young women have grown and developed into professionals in an array of fields."

Among those in attendance:

Nalena Betancourt*

Rachel Gillis

Lelah Pate*

Rebecca Hidalgo

Shannon Esparanza-Devos*

Leah Elliot

Casey Dodd

Tryna Tafoya*

Farryn Townley*

Heidi Farran*

Susie Mischenko*

Kelley Ross

Sonia Espitia*

Brielle Slepicoff*

Jasmine Pratt

Alexis Barbara*

Kristy Krohn*

Erin Kelly

TinaMarie Lutizetti

Marie Hirsch

* Denotes All-Big West honoree

The current squad of Matadors, those preparing for the 2012 fall varsity season, includes 2011 Big West Goalkeeper of the Year Cynthia Jacobo and All-Big West Second Team selections Melissa Fernandez and Katie Russ.

Jacobo became just the third Matador in school history to receive a player of the year award after being named Goalkeeper of the Year in 2011. The junior from Arleta, Calif., started 18 matches in net in 2011, posting a 1.47 goals-against-average, 60 saves and a .698 save percentage.

She added four shutouts during the year and appeared to save her best performances for conference competition. This year she was 4-3-1 with a 1.41 GAA, 32 saves and a .744 save percentage. For her career, Jacobo is 14-6-1 (.690) with 12 shutouts against league opposition in the regular season. 

A formidable force on defense, Russ earned Second Team honors for the first time in her career. She had a goal and an assist while appearing in 18 matches. She scored her second career goal in the Matador's first-ever victory at LMU and assisted on Farran's game-winning goal against Long Beach State.

Fernandez finished the 2011 season with a career-high four goals and 12 points. She added four assists to raise her career total to 10, tying her for the fifth-most in school history. Fernandez also led the squad with 53 shots on the year, the third-most in school history for a single season.

"We have a great schedule planned for 2012 and I think our fans and this school should be excited for another great season of Northridge soccer," West said.