Spartan women's soccer welcomes 16 newcomers as fall practices begin

San Jose State head women’s soccer coach Tamie Grimes welcomed 16 new student-athletes today as the Spartans began their pre-season workout schedule. They join 14 returnees and redshirts as Grimes begins her first season as head coach after serving as the interim head coach last year.

"I’m excited about my first recruiting class and I’m expecting big things from them," said Grimes, whose team won the Western Athletic Conference Tournament title and earned its first NCAA Tournament berth last fall. "I’m excited to be putting my own stamp on the San Jose State women’s soccer program."

The newcomers include four transfers from four-year schools – senior goalkeeper Annemarie Hennes (Illinois), Janice Roux and Marie McCann, both sophomores from Saint Mary’s College in Moraga, Calif., and Kim Ponce, a second-year freshman from San Diego State. Roux and Ponce are midfielders and McCann is a forward.

The junior college transfers include Amanda Watson from West Valley College and Kerry Blaschke and Alyson Ratzburg, both from De Anza College. Watson is a defender while Blaschke and Ratzburg are both listed at forward.

The nine freshmen include Vernonica Hernandez, who joins her sister Jessica on the team; Jessica Korpela and Alaina Chandler, who both hail from Colorado; Erin Lavey and Amy Banuelos, both from Pleasanton, Calif.; Kara Krale and Julie Wallace of San Jose, Eve Gamero of Hayward and Ixzchel Salgado of Los Angeles. Lavey is a goalkeeper and Hernandez, Gamero and Banuelos are defenders. Korpela, Krale, Salgado and Wallace are all listed as midfielders and Chandler is a forward.

The Spartans, who finished with a 10-13-1 overall record last season (3-3-1 WAC) open the season Sept. 2 against Santa Clara University at Spartan Stadium.