COLORADO SPRINGS - It's probably a reasonable assumption that The Classical Academy girls soccer team is among the most talented in Colorado. Among all classifications.
That point was driven home on Feb. 6 when six members of the club signed their national letters of intent during a festive ceremony at the school that was attended by several hundred people.
“These girls are fantastic athletes and great students,” said TCA soccer coach Blake Galvin. “In a lot of ways this is one of the more proud moments of my coaching career.”
Those signing college scholarships were: Claire LaValley (Taylor, Upland, Indiana), Caitlyn Troupe (Colorado Christian), Meghan Troupe (Colorado Christian), Kierra Mattingly (Oklahoma Baptist, Shawnee), Sarah Turner (Colorado Christian) and Joanie Jacks (Long Island-Brooklyn).
All of the girls have been playing together for years, beginning with Colorado Springs-based Pride Soccer. Most of them started on TCA's 2011 Class 3A state championship team.
A seventh Titans soccer player, Chrissy Lind, has made a commitment to Concordia University in Seward, Nebraska. Lind will wait until the spring to sign her national letter of intent. Another senior, CheyAnn Queener, is expected to sign a scholarship later this winter or spring.
“I think this is probably pretty uncommon,” said Galvin, in regard to so many girls from one team signing scholarships. “I think it's a little bit of an anomaly.”
The girls were all smiles as they sat at the head table. Classmates, teachers, coaches and family members looked on.
“I'm thrilled,” said Katie Troupe, whose daughters were both recruited to play for Colorado Christian in Lakewood. “They're both friends and they both wanted to play together. To see them going together is definitely a God thing. And to be with another one of their high school teammates (Sarah Turner) is exciting.”
Meghan Troupe, a midfielder, tied for the team lead in goals in 2012 with 14. Jacks also had 14. Meghan's nine assists led the team.
Caitlyn, also a midfielder, had seven goals and two assists. Turner, a defender, did not record any statistics.
“The coaches (at Colorado Christian) are great,” Turner said. “I went up for a soccer camp the end of July and everyone was just so mice. It made the decision pretty easy for me.”
Jacks, a midfielder/forward, wasn't surprised that so many of the Titans players signed scholarships. Jacks is the only that will be playing for a Division I school.
“It shows that we're all a big part of this team,” she said. “I just love each and every one of these girls. We've all worked so hard. It's such a great feeling.”
LaValley doubles as a forward/goalie for the Titans. She recorded four goals and two assists last year while helping TCA to a 12-3-3 record. As a goalkeeper, she allowed just four goals in 990 minutes.
“I'm really excited about this season,” LaValley said. “We love playing soccer together and we're all best friends. I'm proud of all the girls.”
In all, TCA had 12 signings on Feb. 6. The others included Daniel Carlson (Auburn, football), Evan Young (Indiana Wesleyan, soccer), Justin Miller (Gardner-Webb, football), Joshua Gerstenberg (Chadron State, football), and Megan Brunette (Wyoming, cross country/track).
“This is by far the largest group of signees we've ever had at TCA,” said Galvin, who also served as the school's athletic director prior to this school year. “This was, and is, an incredibly athletic class who are also a lot of great students.”