North Texas Soccer Announces Seven Additional Signees In 2017 Recruiting Class
All Seven Hail From Dallas-Fort Worth Area
DENTON - Following the Mean Green's third-straight regular-season Conference USA championship in 2016, North Texas head women's soccer coach John Hedlund has announced the signing of seven student-athletes to his roster. The seven signees add to a class that already includes freshman transfer Natalie Newell out of Arkansas and redshirt freshman transfer Caroline Paulette out of Texas Tech.
"I really liked the way this recruiting class came together, especially at the end with the transfers we added," Hedlund said. "We lost a lot from last year's championship team, but I feel we gained a lot as well. The three transfers will make an immediate impact to our team, especially with the experience and knowledge they have all gained playing in the SEC and Big 12. The six players coming straight out of high school are also very talented. Most of them are coming off of high-profile Elite Club National League teams that have several years of experience at the highest club level along with the size, speed and athleticism we need to contend for a championship each year."
The seven signees are all from the Dallas-Fort Worth area: Natalie McDonough (Dallas), Berklee Peters (Keller), Logan Bruffett (Rockwall), Elle DeFrain (Plano), Alexis Smith (Keller), Mia Bryce (Denton) and Brooke Lampe (Mansfield).
The class consists of six high school players and one transfer from Missouri. The total number of Power 5 transfers that join the Mean Green for the 2017 season is now at three. Newell (Murphy) and Paulette (Lewisville) were early enrollees who are already at North Texas.
The majority of the players in the Mean Green soccer program hail from the DFW area and this class is no different.
Natalie McDonough | Midfield | Dallas | Missouri
Natalie joins the Mean Green after playing two years at Missouri, where she played in 18 games over the last two seasons at midfield and defense. She has achieved success at the high school, club and national level. She was a U.S. Soccer Under-17 Women's National Team camp participant and was selected to the 2012 Region III pool.
Natalie played for Dallas Sting ECNL, coached by Antonio Carlos Pecorari, also known as Tatu. Tatu was one of the most accomplished indoor soccer players in the U.S. and was Hedlund's teammate with the Dallas Sidekicks. Natalie was a part of the 2014 Dallas Sting team that won the 2014 ECNL national title.
She led Bishop Lynch in 2014-15 with 22 goals and 10 assists as the team knocked off Ursuline Academy for the TAPPS Division I state title, ending Ursuline's national record of 24-straight state titles. Natalie scored the winning goal in the 2-1 victory, and she was a 2015 Dallas Morning News First-Team All-Area selection. Natalie was also named district MVP as a junior and senior, and selected to the 2013 TAPPS 5A All-State First Team.
Berklee Peters | Forward | Solar Chelsea ECNL | Keller | Keller HS
Berklee was recently named to the 2017 preseason winter High School All-American Watch List prior to her senior season. She plays for Keller High School, which has been ranked top 10 in the state and nation for the last four years by TopDrawerSoccer.com.
She is a three-time first-team all-district player. She scored 17 goals as a junior and led her team in goals scored as a sophomore and was the team leader in assists as a freshman when Keller advanced to the region semifinals.
Berklee plays club for Solar Chelsea ECNL. She was named to the TeamSnap Winter State Stars, the 2016 National Elite Prep Showcase All-Tournament Team Second Team and the 2013 ECNL Showcase All-Tournament Team. In 2014, Berklee and Solar Chelsea were the national champions in the National American League. She is club teammates with Logan Bruffett, a fellow Mean Green signee.
Berklee's parents, Kevin and Laurel, both attended the University of North Texas. Kevin played for the tennis team and was a part of the 1991 Southland Conference championship team.
Logan Bruffett | Defense | Solar Chelsea ECNL | Rockwall | Community HS
Logan is a letterwinner in soccer, basketball and track at Community High School, and is team captain of the soccer and basketball teams for her senior season. She helped lead the soccer team to an 8-0 record as a junior, when they advanced to the regional quarterfinals. She was named the 2015-16 UIL All-District 10-4A Midfield MVP and was a two-time first-team all-district honoree in soccer.
Logan was also an all-district player in basketball. She was named all-district defensive first team during the 2013-14 season and was a recent 2017 first-team all-district player.
She was a three-time Lady Braves Award honoree, is the National Honors Society president and is her class valedictorian. Logan has played for the Solar Chelsea club team since she was 11 years old and has been with Solar Chelsea ECNL since 2012. She is club teammates with Berklee Peters, a fellow Mean Green signee.
Logan is the younger sister of Lauryn Bruffett, who currently plays for the Mean Green soccer team.
Elle-Marie DeFrain | Midfield | Dallas Sting ECNL | Plano | Plano East Senior
Elle-Marie plays for Plano East Senior High School, where she was named team MVP as a freshman. She was named the District 10-5A Utility MVP as a freshman, honorable mention all-district as a sophomore and second-team all-district as a junior.
She played club for Dallas Texans ECNL and Dallas Sting ECNL. Her teams were the state cup champions in 2011 and 2012 and were regional champions in 2012. She was selected to the ODP North Texas Regional Team from 2011-13 and was an ODP Region III Pool selection in 2013.
Alexis Smith | Defense | Dallas Sting ECNL | Keller | Byron Nelson HS
Alexis is a two-time captain at Byron Nelson High School. She is a three-time all-district player and a three-time academic all-district honoree and is also a two-time letterwinner in basketball.
She has played club with the Dallas Sting and with the Dallas Sting ECNL since 2014. She was a 2017 National Elite Prep Showcase all-tournament team honorable mention and was captain of her Dallas Sting '99 team from 2015-17.
Mia Bryce | Midfielder | D'Feeters ECNL | Denton | Ryan HS
Mia is a Denton native who plays for Ryan High School. She was named her team's offensive player of the year in 2015 and received the 2014 Billy Ryan Raider Award. She was named first-team all-district in 2015 and second-team all-district in 2014. She received the varsity academic-athlete award in 2014-15.
Mia played club for Dallas Texans ECNL, Dallas Sting ECNL and most recently D'Feeters ECNL.
Brooke Lampe | Goalkeeper | Solar Chelsea FC | Mansfield | Lake Ridge HS
Brooke is a three-time captain for the Lake Ridge High School soccer team and is a three-time first-team all-district player and was named district goalkeeper of the year as a sophomore. She was named defensive MVP as a freshman and team MVP as a sophomore and junior. She holds the school record of 14 shutouts.
Brooke has played club with Solar Chelsea and Liverpool FC. Her Liverpool team won State Cup in 2013, and she has served as team captain from 2013-17. She also competed in track and volleyball.
Brooke served as student body president as a senior and class president her junior year. She was named to the A/B Honor Roll. Brooke's brother, Chris, played soccer at Dallas Baptist, and brother, Taylor, is a goalkeeper at Midwestern State.
Natalie Newell | Midfield | Murphy| Arkansas (previously announced signee)
Natalie played in 15 games for the No. 19 Razorbacks in the 2016 campaign, including the SEC Championship and two rounds of the NCAA Tournament. She was a two-time captain of the Plano East Senior High soccer team, earned all-district honors as a junior and freshman, and was a first-team all-district selection as a senior. She was named her team's offensive MVP during her freshman and junior campaigns and received team MVP honors as a junior and senior.
She played club soccer for the D'Feeters ECNL and received the D'Feeters showcase senior award. She was selected to the Olympic Development Program in 2009, was a U.S. Soccer id2 recommendation and was named to the 2016 Girls IMG Academy 150 Player Pool. She will have three years of eligibility remaining at North Texas.
Caroline Paulette | Defense | Lewisville, TX | Texas Tech (previously announced signee)
Caroline was a redshirt last fall at Texas Tech and will have four years of eligibility with the Mean Green. She was a four-year letterwinner at Hebron High School where she helped her team claim the 2013-14 Texas 5A State Championship. She was teammates on that championship team with current Mean Green midfielder Logan Layn.
Caroline recorded 22 goals and 18 assists during the 2012-13 season and was named offensive player of the year. She was a two-time all-district player. She graduated high school in 3.5 years and played with the Dallas Texans 99/98 boys club team during her final spring semester.
Paulette also played for the Dallas Sting ECNL girls club team, which advanced to nationals her junior and senior seasons. She was coached by Antonio Carlos Pecorari, also known as Tatu.