WALTHAM, Mass.- Six members of the Brandeis University women's soccer team have been selected to the 2013 All-University Athletic Association (UAA) team. Senior defender Kelly Peterson of Houston, Texas, and junior defender Alec Spivack of Miami, Fla., were second-team selections. Four more players received an honorable mention. Sophomore forward Melissa Darling of Weymouth, Mass., junior goalkeeper Michelle Savuto of Ridgewood, N.J., sophomore defender Haley Schachter of West Barnstable, Mass., and junior forward Dara Spital of Miami, Fla. were all credited for great seasons.
Peterson was the anchor for a staunch Judges defense at center back, starting all 19 games this season. She has now been named to three consecutive All-UAA teams. This season, Peterson helped Brandeis record nine more shutouts after setting a school record with 13 last year. She maintained her reputation as an excellent free kick taker, notching two goals off of set pieces. Her first goal of the year was an earlier equalizer at Gordon in an eventual 3-2 defeat. Her second goal was another booming free kick from at least 45 yards out that tied the game late versus NYU on Senior Day in a come-from-behind 2-1 victory.
Spivack was another strong piece to Brandeis' great defense, playing with Peterson at center back. She started all 18 games she played in and was instrumental in keeping opponents off the score board with her play on the back line.
Darling and Spital were honored for their work on offense this season. Darling played in 18 games this season, coming off the bench to finish fourth on the team with nine points. She had three goals and three assists on the season including a game-winner in a 1-0 win at Case Western Reserve and a late equalizer in a 1-1 draw versus Chicago. Darling also notched a pair of assists in the Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC) quarterfinals in a 2-2 loss on penalty kicks against Castleton State.
Despite only playing in, and starting, 13 games this season due to injury, Spital finished tied for UAA lead with 24 points, third in the conference with nine goals, and tied for first with five game-winning goals. She recorded at least one point in her first seven games of the year and had two multi-goal efforts in a 6-0 rout against Clark and a 3-0 victory over Wellesley.
Savuto and Schachter each received their first awards of their respective careers. Savuto split time in net last season but earned all of the playing time this year and won UAA Athlete of the Week twice this season. Savuto had a 1.08 goals against average, .798 save percentage, and led the UAA with 75 saves as she recorded eight shutouts. Schachter had a great year at left back, starting all 19 games.
Under head coach Denise Dallamora, the Judges finished the year 10-6-3 and were awarded the second-seed in the ECAC Tournament. On Wednesday November 13th, after completing 110 minutes of soccer Brandeis and Castleton State were tied at 2-2 in the quarterfinals. The Judges fell 4-3 in penalty kicks as the Spartans advance to the semifinals.
Peterson is a 2010 graduate of Clear Lake High School. She is the daughter of Doug Peterson and Randa McCartney, Houston, Texas.
Spivack is a 2011 graduate of Miami Palmetto Senior High School. She is the daughter of Michael and Liz Spivack, Miami, Fla.
Darling is a 2012 graduate of Weymouth High School. She is the daughter of Jack and Diane Darling, Weymouth, Mass.
Savuto is a 2011 graduate of Ridgewood High School. She is the daughter of Paul and Deborah Savuto, Ridgewood, N.J.
Schachter is a 2012 graduate of Barnstable High School. She is the daughter of Keith and Linda Schachter, West Barnstable, Mass.
Spital is a 2011 graduate of Gulliver Preparatory School. She is the daughter of Michael and Jeanne Spital, Miami, Fla.