Soccer: Top 5 Blue Raiders to watch in 2017

Photo by Austin Lewis / Sidelines Archives

Story by Timothy Carroll / Sports Reporter

The Middle Tennessee Lady Raider soccer team struggled at times last season, going 4-12-1 overall on the season with a 2-8 mark in conference play. That being said, this is a new season and a new team that has reloaded in the offseason and is looking to make some noise in the Conference USA standings.

With two games in the book this young season, here are five players that Blue Raider fans should watch out for in 2017.

1) Sydney Chalcraft (Sophomore)

Chalcraft was the primary goalkeeper for the team last year, playing in 13 games with 12 starts. She had 62 saves and allowed 25 goals, averaging two goals allowed per game with a save percentage of 71. She had seven saves against the number one team in the country last year at Florida State, and a career-high in saves against Lipscomb University with eight. She’s still a young player with plenty of time to develop into an elite keeper, so fans should expect her to be a mainstay on the team.

2) Leslie Frye (Freshman)

While not yet proven on the college level, Frye had a stellar high school career that saw her earn several accolades, including All-Middle Tennessee Second Team and District 8 AAA Forward of the Year. She also played for the Tennessee Soccer Club for three seasons. Her 28 goals and 26 assists from her senior year are a testament to her skill and kicking accuracy, so fans should expect her to be an immediate contributor to the team.

3) Harriet Jones (Sophomore)

Jones is a transfer student from Indian Hills Community College where she played one season, earning impressive accolades. Among these are being named as the team’s only freshman captain and earning All-Conference Honorable Mentions. She started 16 games and scored five goals with seven assists, so fans can expect her to help tremendously in the offensive attack.

4) Peyton DePriest (Freshman)

DePriest comes in as yet another player untested in college soccer, however her high school career is as impressive as they come. Her senior year saw her garner several awards and recognition, including All-State selections and All-Midstate selections in Tennessee. She was a Tennessee State Player of the Year finalist, as well as a Gatorade Player of the Year candidate. She helped the Tennessee U18 state team win the National Championship and was inducted along with her team into the Tennessee Soccer Hall of Fame. Fans can expect her to be a force on this team for many years to come.

5) Sydney Navarro (Sophomore)

Navarro led the team in minutes played last season with a total of 1,545 minutes. She started all 17 of the team’s games and subbed out a mere three times for a total of 17 minutes. She is a mainstay on the defensive side of the game and all of her starts came in the central defensive area. She was an All-Conference USA Third Team Selection last season, so fans can expect her to be a defensive stalwart for the team once again.

For more Soccer stories, follow Timothy Carroll (@TimCarroll95) on Twitter

To contact Sports Editor Rusty Ellis (@RustyEllis13), email sports@mtsusidelines.com.

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