New Look Titans Ready For Challenging Women’s Soccer Schedule
By Mark DeCotis, Eastern Florida // August 7, 2015
BREVARD COUNTY, FLORIDA – Over five seasons as a program Eastern Florida’s women’s soccer team has won 57 games, lost 12 and tied five.
But there is one victory that has eluded head coach Jeff Carr and his players: a triumph in the NJCAA Women’s Division I National Championship game.
The Titans have competed in the national tournament the last three years, finishing as runner-up in 2012, falling in the first round in 2013 and losing on penalty kicks in their semifinal in 2014.
The tournament will be held in November at the Titan Soccer Complex on Eastern Florida’s Melbourne Campus for the third straight year, the Titans hosting through 2016. And Carr believes he has a team capable of once again competing in the tournament.
The fulcrum for the Titans will be the midfield featuring 2014 first team All-America sophomore Abbie Camargo, the school record holder for assists in a season (16), and her twin sister Briana.
Abbie Camargo contributed 11 goals in 16 matches – second-highest on the team last season – while Briana scored eight goals and recorded six assists in only nine games due to an injury.
“I made it clear to our recruits and our returning players that we can’t be satisfied with just qualifying for nationals,” Carr said.
“Our mission is simple: to win the national championship. And getting to play for the national title on our home pitch is a privilege.”
The Titans scored 53 goals while allowing 10. Second-team All-America goalkeeper sophomore Asmara Holmes, who allowed nine goals and recorded 41 saves in 15 games while compiling a 9-1-2 record, is back.
Just seven other players return for the Titans who finished 13-1-2. To that end Carr hit the recruiting trail hard and his efforts paid dividends, especially up top.
Among the signees are three-time Spanish National Team player Paula Astiazaran Colina, a forward from San Sebastian who played on Spain’s U17 national team; Khadija (Bunny) Shaw, a freshman midfielder and forward from Spanish Town, Jamaica who captained Jamaica’s U20 national team; Julia Hernandez, a forward and attacking midfielder from Madrid, Spain who played on Spain’s U16, U17 and U 18 national teams; Nicole Broderick a sophomore transfer and striker from Navarro College and Kingston, Jamaica who played on Jamaica’s U16 and U17 national teams; right back and center midfielder Bethan Louise Jones of Kings Lynn, Norfolk, England; and goalkeeper Esthefasnny Barreras of Phoenix, Arizona who played for the Mexican U20 national team.
Returnees on the backline include Haley Cook and Arnela Cordic, who both played in all 16 games last season and classmates Serena Delgado and Kassidee Davis. Carr also will assess several others for playing time.
Fans are in for a treat as the Titans have seven regular season home matches this season compared to the five they played in each of the last three, in 2012 at various sites in Brevard County and the last two on the Melbourne Campus.
The District H playoff, which rewards the winner with a national tournament berth, returns to Mississippi in November after one year in Melbourne.
But before the Titans can concern themselves with the district match, they need to take care of business in the six games against NJCAA Region 8 foes Broward College and Polk State College.
The Titans have not lost to Broward or Polk over the last three seasons, winning three region titles and advancing to the postseason.
But Broward and Polk figure to be much improved and Carr expects six nerve-wracking games in addition to the other seven matches on the schedule.
Among them are a home-and-home series with perennial foe Darton College of Albany, Georgia. The teams played to a 2-2 tie in last year’s national quarterfinals and have a history of close, taut matches.
The regular-season opener is at home at 6 p.m., Saturday, Aug. 29 against Andrew College of Georgia.
Aside from the trip to Darton the Titans will leave Florida only one other time, heading to Illinois for Oct. 10 and 11 games against 2014 national tournament participant Wubonsee Community College and 2013 participant College of Lake County.
The Titans visit Broward twice in Pembroke Pines and host Polk twice.
Six of the Titans matches will be shown live on WEFS-TV and streamed live on the Internet.
Admission to Titans home matches is free.