Maryland women’s soccer boasts the nation’s 25th-ranked 2017 recruiting class entering coach Ray Leone’s second season, according to the Top Drawer Soccer rankings released Thursday. The Terps’ group ranks fourth among Big Ten schools.
Middletown High School (Delaware) midfielder Alyssa Poarch, who is also a U-18 National Team pool player, and Canadian youth midfielder Malikae Dayes highlight the Terps’ first ranked class since Leone was hired in January 2016.
“This is a group that we [are] excited to welcome to College Park,” Leone said in a statement. “This class is talented. It [complements] our group of returning players very well. It should be a competitive, skilled collection of players come the fall.”
Poarch was a second-team All-State selection as a freshman, scoring 21 goals and recording six assists. She was also invited to a U.S. U-17 National Training Camp and listed among IMG’s top-150. Dayes similarly had a decorated career for Saint Thomas Aquinas Preparatory School in Ontario, Canada, where she was named team MVP. She chose Maryland over Michigan State, South Carolina and West Virginia.
Dayes’ sister, Mikalya, is also set to join the Terps after playing forward at Saint Thomas and in the 2016 FIFA U-17 World Cup in Jordan.
Maryland’s 2017 class features seven midfielders, three defenders and five forwards.
Despite winning two of their first four contests last season, the Terps are coming off a three-win 2016 campaign, including a 1-10 mark in conference play.
Maryland will likely depend on several players in its 2017 class as a result of its youth. Redshirt midfielder Hope Gouterman, Madison Turner, Chelsea Jackson, Kate Waters and Natasha Ntone-Kouo are expected to be the lone seniors on Maryland’s roster.
The Terps begin their spring schedule with a home contest against East Carolina on Saturday at 3 p.m.