With one month to go until the 2023 women’s college soccer season, Pac-12.com highlights a student-athlete to meet on all 12 Pac-12 teams, including the defending national champion UCLA Bruins.
Arizona—Hope Hisey, GK
The Tucson native is back for a fifth season and has a chance to establish herself as the greatest goalie in the show’s history. Hisey’s 289 career saves are the fourth most in Wildcat lore and 62 fewer than Jen Weibel’s all-time record.
For reference, Hisey stopped 61 shots last year when he played every minute of every game for an upstart Wildcat team that tied for fifth in the Pac-12 after finishing last the year before.
— Arizona Soccer (@ArizonaSoccer) October 7, 2022
Arizona State—Lucy Johnson, D
The Sun Devils graduated their top three scorers from last season, but Johnson, their top assistant, is back. Johnson is a strong 1-v-1 defender who also helps out on offense. His only goal last season was a memorable one: a game-winner that gave the Sun Devils their first win over Arizona since 2015.
A native of England, Johnson is another example of the international talent the Sun Devils have thrived on under head coach Graham Winkworth.
No. 3 scores the third goal of the night 😈
— Sun Devil Soccer (@SunDevilSoccer) November 5, 2022
California—Karlie Lema, F
The junior is Cal’s leading scorer after scoring five goals, including two game-winners, last season. That was after Lema led the Bears with six goals and 12 points in 2021 when he was part of the Pac-12 All-Freshman Team.
The Cardenal scored, but Karlie Lema responded to even the score!
We’re 1-1 at Berkeley.
— Cal Women’s Soccer (@CalWSoc) November 4, 2022
Colorado—Shyra James, F
James’ 11 goals last season were tied for third in the Pac-12. He opened the season on a hot streak, scoring in the Buffaloes’ first six games to set a school record for consecutive games with a goal of 10. (He scored in four straight games to end the 2022 campaign).
Now in his senior year, James hopes to lead Colorado back to the NCAA Tournament for the first time since his freshman season in 2020.
— Colorado Buffaloes (@CUBuffs) August 21, 2022
Oregon—Ajanae Respass, F
The Colorado native made the Pac-12 All-Freshman team last season after leading the Ducks in goals (4) and points (10) despite missing a few games with injury. His biggest tally was the game-winner against then-No. 15 Washington on September 24.
“Nae did a great job leading our front line this year,” head coach Graeme Abel said after the season. “He played with a number of different teammates at the top, but could constantly be a threat in our games. What he took this year will give him great experience going forward and allow him to continue to evolve within our program.”
The Ducks get behind the defense with a long kick from Leah Freeman leading to a small exchange between Kaitlyn Paculba and Ajanae Respass, who scores her 4th of the season.#GoDucks pic.twitter.com/BZTtVnSdvR
— Oregon Ducks Soccer (@OregonSoccer) September 24, 2022
Oregon State—McKenna Martinez, F
Martinez led Oregon State in scoring for the second year in a row, scoring 10 goals in 2022. With 22 goals in two seasons, Martinez has a chance to become the Beavers’ all-time leading scorer if she continues this torrid pace. The program record is 47 goals in the hands of Jodie Taylor.
73′ | McKenna puts us ahead! pic.twitter.com/ieo4dLYqMe
— Oregon State Women’s Soccer (@BeaverWSoccer) November 5, 2022
Stanford—Elise Evans, D.
Evans was the Pac-12 Freshman of the Year and TopDrawerSoccer National Freshman of the Year after anchoring a Cardinal backline that posted the sixth best goals-against average in the country. Evans was in the clutch several times as all three counts from him were game winners. One of them handed No. 1 UCLA its first loss of the season.
Evans continues a family tradition at The Farm, as his father Marlon (football and track) and mother Dena (football and track) were student-athletes at Stanford. His great-grandfather Ben Dey is in the Stanford Hall of Fame and won the NCAA tennis doubles title in 1936.
“I look forward to continuing the greatness they have brought to the school.”
— Pac-12 Network (@Pac12Network) October 22, 2022
UCLA—Reilyn Turner, F.
One of the top two scorers on the Bruins’ national championship team, Turner’s 11 goals last season were tied for third in the Pac-12. She was named the Most Outstanding Offensive Player in the College Cup after scoring the game-winner against Alabama and the tying goal with 16 seconds remaining in the national championship game against North Carolina.
— UCLA Women’s Soccer (@UCLAWSoccer) December 6, 2022
USC-Simone Jackson, F.
The athletic midfielder is USC’s leading scorer after scoring six goals last season, earning himself a spot on the Pac-12 All-First Team. Jackson’s numbers could have been even better if he hadn’t missed the first two games of the season to compete in the U-20 World Cup with the US Youth National Team.
Like Evans, Jackson has a long family history at his school. His brother John Jackson III played wide receiver on the USC football team as did his father John Jr., who is the Trojans’ all-time leader in receptions and also played baseball at USC . His grandfather, John Sr., was an assistant offensive coach for the Trojan football team and helped USC win a national championship in 1978.
“My family is my why”, Simone told the Daily Trojan.
Utah—Taliana Kaufusi, F
Kaufusi has steadily improved with the Utes, raising his scoring total each season. In 2022 he led the team in goals (6), total points (12), shots (41) and shots on goal (17). Kaufusi was one of two Utes to start all 19 games.
— Utah Women’s Soccer (@UtahWSoccer) July 6, 2023
Washington—Kelsey Branson, MF
Stacked with seniors last season, the Huskies will be one of the youngest teams in the Pac-12 this year. Branson is one of the freshmen to watch after she tied for second on the team in scoring last year with five goals. She scored the game-winning goal in the Apple Cup at Washington State, the Huskies’ first victory in Pullman since 1996. Branson gave himself an A for her performance in the freshman season.
“Right now, I’m excited for the future,” she told the Del Mar Times. “We’re going to be such a young team and we’ll have about a dozen freshmen. They’re all going to be hungry and motivated to show what we can do.”
The touch. The cross. He takes it. The end.
Everything about this is just 🤌
— Washington Women’s Soccer (@UW_WSoccer) November 5, 2022
Washington State—Margie Detrizio, F
The senior led WSU in scoring (11 goals) and assists (6), racking up the most points (28) by a Cougar since 2019. All told, Detrizio was tied for third in the Pac-12 in scoring and won all conferences. Second Team Honors.
69′ – Double by Margie Detrizio thanks to the high pressure from the WSU front row. Look: https://t.co/6alYIpacdj
— Washington State Soccer (@WSUCougarSoccer) August 28, 2022