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Get to know the 2018 Columbus Eagles

With a new season approaching, we wanted to familiarize readers with the Eagles’ roster.

Columbus Eagles players greet each other before the start of their friendly April 7th against Ohio Wesleyan.
Daniel Herlensky

The Columbus Eagles look to finish out a stellar preseason campaign against Ohio Dominican on Sunday evening. The WPSL franchise has high aspirations coming into the 2018 season, as it experienced a franchise-best finish in 2017.

Fans unfamiliar with the club can expect a blended style of dynamic play, as players from across the region and across the globe descend upon central Ohio to share their love for the beautiful game.

Let’s take a look at the Columbus Eagles’ game-day roster for preseason finale against the Panthers and allow fans the chance to familiarize themselves with the talent on the pitch.

Goalkeepers

Jenna Villacres
Just a junior at Westerville South and the youngest player on the roster, Villacres quickly earned the respect of her Eagles teammates during preseason with her vocal leadership and poise on the pitch. She is a gifted goalkeeper with great lateral quickness and a tremendous vertical height.

Madi Moore
Moore stepped up in the middle of the 2017 season, leading the Eagles in goal until Shannon Flower arrived back to Columbus from a stint in Australia. The Mount Vernon Nazarene Cougar is is quite vocal and quick on her feet. Moore’s best game of the 2017 season occurred as she kept the Eagles within two goals of eventual national champion Fire & Ice SC (Saint Louis, MO).

Defenders

Deidre Abouahmed

Ralph Schudel

The veteran Eagles defender has accomplished a lot throughout her career and still has more to give. It will be intriguing to see how Abouahmed handles the transition from outside back to central defender. Fans should keep an eye on her chemistry with newcomer Megan Minnix.

Summer Bourcier
Bourcier successfully converted from midfielder into Abouahmed’s vacated outside back position. Despite her size, she doesn’t steer away from contact. Bourcier is physical and loud on the field from her new position, calling out defensive shifts and missed assignments. Her style of play will win fans over quickly.

Monique Hanayik
The defender has experienced incredible growth over the past season and appears poised for a solid 2018 campaign. Despite being a defender, Hanayik poses a huge threat in the offensive zone. She was an accomplished attacker with Capital University and has the green light to shoot anytime the opportunity presents itself.

Amber Kern
The captain of the Columbus Eagles has improved drastically this offseason and is taking a serious leadership role with the club. The former Akron Zip prefers to press into the attacking third, but can quickly recover to snuff out the opposing attack.

Megan Minnix
Minnix is new to the Columbus Eagles and oozes physicality. She will make her debut in black and gold on Sunday, and appears poised to be a mainstay in the game day lineup.

Corie Moore
The accomplished defender has done it all in her career. She’s won a WPSL Championship and made appearances in U.S. Open Cup final. This will be Moore’s first appearance in the Eagles game-day lineup. One thing’s for certain, you don’t want to catch the defender in a bad mood. She has the tendency to keep defenders in her pocket.

Midfielders

Alexa Cheripko

Ralph Schudel

The former Bowling Green University standout has grown leaps and bounds this offseason and her confidence is at an all-time high. Cheripko’s role continues to evolve throughout preseason. She is capable of playing a winger position, but was featured in central midfield during the Eagles’ first game against OWU. Wherever she plays, she will be a major contributor on the pitch.

Larissa Najjar
She is one of the more creative players on the Eagles roster. Najjar can create something out of nothing and can be best compared to a version of FC Barcelona player Andres Iniesta. She is very creative on the ball and can weasel her way out of tough positions.

Lisa Nouanesengsy
The former Indiana Hoosier has an incredible goal scoring prowess and can strike at a moments notice. Don’t let her size fool you, Nouanesengsy is a burner.

Micaela Powers
Powers came out of nowhere in the Eagles’ first friendly against Ohio Wesleyan. The former Wisconsin Badger has national team experience and a couple of Big Ten championships to her credit. Powers is a force in the air and possesses the ability of the long throw-in. Her distribution from the back will be a true asset to the Eagles this season.

Lila Remache
The Eagles midfielder brings her French influence to the pitch and is exciting every time she gets the ball at her feet. Fans will fall in love with Remache and her attention to detail while on the ball.

Forwards

Rachel MacLeod

Columbus Eagles forward Rachel MacLeod
Ralph Schudel

MacLeod spent most of the 2017 season hampered by a lingering leg injury that limited her minutes, but the former Toledo Rocket is back and better than even in 2018. She led the Eagles in scoring during the indoor friendlies and found the score sheet against OWU. If she remains healthy, MacLeod could play a major role for the Eagles this season.

Dani Gunderson
Like Larissa Najjar, Gunderson demonstrates incredible creativity on the ball. She isn’t shy about having a crack at goal from outside the penalty area. Her hustle and willingness to outwork the competition is second-to-none.

Eryn Weber
Don’t let this forward’s calm demeanor catch you off guard. Weber flies under the radar and then picks the opportune moment to strike. She is crafty and wise on the ball, you won’t catch this player making silly mistakes.