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Courtesy: Mike McLaughlin
Head Coach Brendan Lawler announces his recruiting class

Lawler Announces Recruiting Class

Courtesy: Manhattan Athletic Department
Release: 02/22/2017
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Riverdale, NY - Manhattan Women's Soccer Head Coach Brendan Lawler has announced his incoming class of nine student-athletes for next season.

Lawler on the 2017 Class:
“This class is full of high-level, technically-strong, tactically-smart, and incredibly hard-working players. These eight incoming freshmen and one transfer will be a major factor in our ability to get back to the MAAC tournament and bring a Championship to Riverdale. Their depth and fight will make everybody around them better as we come together as a new team!”

Maddie Barrow (Ramsey, NJ / Ramsey) 
Club Team: FC Crush



A left footed, aggressive outside back who loves to get forward, Barrow will have the opportunity to fill the void left by graduating outside backs Jenny Bitzer and Lauren Barton. She also makes the program stronger and more physical in the back while bringing a technical ability and tactical understanding that will help the team be more dangerous in attack.

Lawler on Barrow: “An excellent fit for our program, Maddie is an outside back that can serve quality balls and help us get forward as well as defend in an organized unit. Off the field, she is a strong student, fierce competitor and puts in max effort for everything she is on and off the field.”

Alexa Chapman (Morganville, NJ / Marlboro)
Club Team: PDA



A strong, physical forward, Chapman can play both sides of the ball at a high level. An adept goal scorer, she has a nose for the net and can be dangerous at any moment off through balls. Equally impressive is her zest to play defense at a high level. 

Lawler on Chapman: “Throughout the recruiting process, Lexy continually showed a strong desire to make a difference for not only our program and the entire college. This type of desire is exactly what is needed to build not only winning teams but championship programs. That coupled with her nose for goal will make everyone around her on offense and defense better players.”

Brianna DeLeo (Harriman, NY / Monroe Woodbury)
Club Team: Force FC



A fierce competitor, DeLeo brings excellent field vision and an ability to attack opposing defenses to Manhattan. She is highly-skilled at driving at and beating defenders while being able to finish on 1-v-1 opportunities. Those attributes coupled with a great shot will make her difficult to defend. 

Lawler on DeLeo: “Like so many of the recruits in this class, Bri’s skill set makes us deeper and her skill set will benefit everybody around her. A powerful player, she is the epitome of it being the size of the fight in a player and not the size of the player in the fight as I vividly remember her ripping shots as against bigger, stronger players.”

Sophie Demurjian (Manasquan, NJ / Red Bank Catholic)
Club Team: MatchFit ECNL



A hard-working, physically strong attacking player, Demurjian is relentless in front of goal and has an excellent work ethic on both sides of the ball as her training and playing background will help the program thrive. Additionally, her experience of playing for MatchFit ECNL will help prepare her for the collegiate level as she has faced top-level competition throughout her prep career.

Lawler on Demurjian: “We love players from excellent programs that compete on a high level not only on game day but at every training session. That is something important to us in our program and Sophie’s willingness to do that will help everybody improve daily.”


Sophomore Caleigh Farrell (Freehold, NJ / Freehold Township)

Last School: New Hampshire | Club Team: MatchFit ECNL



A strong physical defender, Farrell comes to the women’s soccer program with the understanding of what it takes to compete at the Division I level. She is a strong tackler, but still has the touch to intercept the ball and immediately start the attack. Farrell will also help maintain the excellent academic reputation of the program as she has an outstanding first semester at UNH.

Lawler on Farrell: “We are excited to have Caleigh join the program this spring. We were fans of Caleigh during the recruiting process and jumped at the opportunity to bring her in as a transfer. She will bring needed depth to the back line while making us stronger and more physical.”

Sydney Harwood (Monroe, NY / Monroe Woodbury)
Club Team: Force FC



Another technically smooth and intelligent player, Harwood has the ability to play anywhere in the backline or the midfield and she is able to pick up the nuances of positions and develop quickly. Her versatility makes us deeper in many positions while her unassuming work ethic and desire to get better makes Harwood a welcome addition to the program.

Lawler on Harwood: “I’m not sure I’ve been around a youth player who has developed over the duration of the recruiting process as much as Syd has. A big addition to the program, I know she will bring the same qualities that have allowed her to grow and mature to campus.”

Lindsey Healy (Sussex, NJ / Pope John XXIII Regional)
Club Team: Force FC



The final addition to the class of 2017, Healy's ability to attack from the central and wide areas make her a difficult assignment for opposing defenders as they also must guard against outstanding movement. As is the common theme for this class, she understands that even as an attacking player her defensive responsibility is vital to the success of the team. 

Lawler on Healy: “Lindsey came to us late in the process and sold us with her play. Her tenacity on both sides of the ball is a terrific example for those around her as her attacking ability from wide areas will help us stretch opposing back lines."

Shelby Jones (Greenville, NC / JH Rose)
Club Team: Pitt Greenville SA



A physically-strong, technically-quick attacking central midfielder, Jones brings with her a pursuit of excellence no matter what the challenge. She has a strong understanding of the pace of the game while knowing when to get forward and when to possess.

Lawler on Jones: “Shelby’s work ethic and high personal standards will fit in perfect with the culture we strive to strengthen every day. Her style of play makes those around her better and will allow her to make an immediate impact.”


Gemma Perez (Park Ridge, NJ / Paramus Catholic)
Club Team: PDA ECNL



A smooth playmaker that can play both the center back as well as the central midfield positions and has an excellent first touch, exemplary striking ability and great field vision. Off the field, she has a zest and desire to succeed at everything she does and we are thrilled to have her at Manhattan College.

Lawler of Perez: “We are looking forward to Gemma's technical ability and tactical understanding strengthening our team. Her excitement for her future at Manhattan has never wavered since the first time I met her as a sophomore and that kind of approach is contagious on-and-off the field.

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