Sophomore forward Hailey Burke (League City) and sophomore defender Ryleigh Smith (Alvin) recently signed with Louisiana State University Shreveport, becoming the first players in Blinn College women's soccer history to sign with a four-year program.
"This season was about laying the foundation of the program and it is exciting that Burke and Smith were the first players to sign since they played a big role for us this year," said Jorden Smith, Blinn head coach.
Burke earned Region XIV honorable mention accolades after starting 16 games and ranking third on the team with seven points. She scored two goals and recorded three assists.
"Burke was a leader for us both on and off the field, so it is great to see her continue her playing career," Smith said. "I expect nothing but great things from her."
Last year, the Louisiana State University Shreveport women's soccer team finished the season with a 13-5-2 record after winning its first Red River Athletic Conference Championship in program history.
"I am looking forward to a new journey and am really excited about playing for a school coming off a conference championship, Burke said. "I am also excited for my name to be down for the rest of Blinn's history as the first player to sign because I loved being a Buccaneer."
Smith started 15 games for Blinn, scoring one goal and recording one assist.
"Ryleigh brought sophomore leadership to our team this year and had a big personality that was always encouraging," Smith said. "Having someone like her who brought so much positivity to the group on a first-year team was really big for us."
As freshmen, Smith and Burke were both starters at Angelina College before transferring to Blinn for its inaugural season.
"I enjoyed playing at Blinn and forming a team with a new program," Ryleigh Smith said. "I am very excited to be moving on to the next level and it is great to be one of the first players to sign out of Blinn."
Blinn finished the season with a 4-12-1 record and 3-8-1 conference record.
Blinn has competed in intercollegiate athletics since 1903 and captured 38 NJCAA national championships since 1987.