Women’s Soccer Announces First-Ever Signings
BROOKLYN HEIGHTS, NY – St. Francis Brooklyn women's soccer head coach Justine Lombardi announced the signings of Eva Papista, Hannah Russel, and Trystan Thompson-Cotterell. The trio becomes the first student-athletes to sign National Letters of Intent (NLI) to join the Terriers women's soccer program for the 2019 season. "Hannah, Trystan, and Eva are great players, but more importantly they are great individuals that are going to contribute so much to this program over the next four years and beyond. They are just the people that you want to go to battle with, and I couldn't be happier with this first group to sign," noted Lombardi on the program's first-ever signees. Papista is a defender from Detroit, MI and played club for Nationals DA. The defender was a member of three-straight USYS National Championship teams (2015, 2016, 2017). She was named a US Development Academy National Finalists U16/17 in 2018 (Kansas City). Papista enjoyed a tremendous amount of success in Michigan as she was a five-time Michigan State Cup Champion (2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017). Russell is a defender and will join the Terriers after staring on the pitch at Riverview High School in New Jersey. In addition, she played club soccer at Real Jersey FC. The defender was selected to the First Team Freedom Division three times (2016, 2017, 2018) and was named Defensive Player of the Year in 2017. She was a member of a team that won three State Championships and one Regional Championship. In NPL Nationals her team came in third-place. Russell was the Terriers' first-ever verbal commit. Thompson-Cotterell is a defender and a native of Ontario, Canada. She played a majority of her club career for Whitby FC before she transitioned to the Darlington Soccer Club, which was a more senior team. Throughout her career at Whitby FC, she won three Cup Championships, three League Championships, and recorded victories in several tournaments. In 2014, she was appointed team captain and help lead the team to the Charity Shield Championship. The following season she was named Player of the Year. In 2016-17 she made the move to Darlington FC and won the league in 2017. While with Darlington, the team won LOSSA and moved on to OFSAA and earned a fifth-place finish this past year.
On June 24, 2018, St. Francis Brooklyn announced the addition of women's soccer as its 21st NCAA Division I program. The team begins competition in the fall of 2019 and is set to join the Northeast Conference (NEC) as its 10th member in the sport of women's soccer. Lombardi was appointed the team's first-ever head coach on August 28, 2018. Lombardi joined St. Francis Brooklyn after serving as a women's soccer assistant coach at her alma mater Quinnipiac University for six seasons.