May 6, 1999
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. – University of Virginia head women’s soccer coachApril Heinrichs announced today that four student-athletes have declaredtheir intention to play at Virginia. Three of them have signed nationalletters of intent to attend UVa at the beginning of the 1998-99 schoolyear. These three are Alyssa Benitez (Lake Mary, Fla./Lake Mary), BrookeStastny (Brooklandville, Md./Maryvale Prepatory), and Kelly Worden (Spring,Tex./Klein). In addition, Meredith Rhodes (Falls Church, Va./Falls Church)has accepted an offer of admission from the University.
Benitez, a forward, was named the 1999 High School Female Athlete of theYear as well as the Florida 6A High School Player of the Year. A three-timemember of the Florida High School All-State First Team in 1997, 1998 and1999, she was a member of the State Champion team in 1997 at Lake Mary HighSchool. Benitez is also a member of the National Honor Society.
Heinrichs on Benitez: “Alyssa is a versatile player who will play forwardfor us. She has a great fighting spirit and a competitive nature that fitsin great with our program. Alyssa has a great deal of just raw athletictalent that makes her very versatile.”
Stastny is a member of the United States Under-18 National Team Pool aswell as a former member of the US Under-16 team. She has been a member ofthe Olympic Development Program (ODP) over the last six years and was nameda Parade High School All-American in 1999.
Heinrichs on Stastny: “Brooke is a strong, powerful defender who since ayoung age has been involved in ODP. I had the opportunity to coach her onthe Under-17 team a couple of years ago. She brings a defensive presence in1v1 marking to the team that is very valuable.”
Worden, a midfielder, is a two-time Parade High School All-American (1998,1999) and was named to the NSCAA/Umbro All-American team in 1998. A memberof the United States Under-17 team, Worden has participated in the OlympicDevelopment Program on the state team for the last five years and on theRegional team for the last four years. She is also a member of the NationalHonor Society.
Heinrichs on Worden: “Kelly comes to us from one of the best club systemsin the country. A central midfielder who has an incredible headingpresence, Kelly is a very creative player who has an attacking mentality.”
Rhodes is a long-time member of the Braddock Road Youth Club Elite teamwhich has won the State Championship both of the last two years and theRegional Championship in 1996. She is a member of the Olympic DevelopmentProgram and was a captain of her high school team at Falls Church. She is amember of the National Honor Society.
Heinrichs on Rhodes: “Meredith is probably our most versatile player whowas highly under-recruited for someone of her talents. “
“This is a strong group of four very talented ladies,” said Heinrichs, whowill be in her fourth season as Virginia’s head coach this fall. “All fourhave extensive experience at both the high school level as well as inregional and national team experience.”
Virginia will return nine starters from the 1998 team which posted anoverall record of 13-6-3. The Cavaliers finished in second place in theAtlantic Coast Conference, while advancing to the NCAA Tournament for the11th time in the last 12 years. Virginia finished the season ranked No. 15in the nation by the NSCAA.