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Women's Recruiting Jul 24, 2023

SMU reveals 9-member signing class, highlighted by Truth and Treasure Byars

DALLAS – The SMU women’s soccer team announced nine newcomers to its roster. The Mustangs are looking to build off their success from head coach Nicole Nelson‘s first season.

In 2022, the Mustangs went 10-4-5 with a 6-2-1 home record. SMU reached the AAC Championship game with a 5-0 semifinal win over USF before falling in double overtime in the Final. The Mustangs were 5-0-3 in non-conference last season, getting as high as No. 15 in the United Soccer Coaches Poll. The SMU defense allowed just 13 goals and held opponents to one or zero goals in 17 of 19 matches.

The Mustangs added eight freshmen and one transfer for the 2023 season.

“We are excited to add this exceptional recruiting class to our very talented roster of returning players,” said Nelson. “Our staff, led by Recruiting Coordinator Mat Cosgriff and Emma Wright-Cates, has put together a class of players that have the potential to help our program compete for championships and make NCAA tournament runs in upcoming years.”

Truth Byars – Forward, Freshman | Richardson, TX/Episcopal School of Dallas

Byars, a Texas youth standout, attended multiple USYNT training centers during her career while playing only for Solar Soccer Club. During her time at Solar, she helped lead the team to an ECNL National Championship, multiple Texas ECNL Conference titles and a Dallas Cup Championship. Truth graduated Cum Laude and her playing high school accolades include the Character Athlete of the Week and Heart of a Champion Character Trait awards along with the SPC Conference Player of the Year and SPC All-Conference Player.

Byars on joining the Mustangs: “I am excited to be on the field with new teammates and friends and I am also happy to be playing alongside my sister again at the next level.”

Treasure Byars – Midfielder, Freshman | Richardson, TX/Leeway Academy

Treasure is a homegrown Texas talent that has been called up for several US National team camps during her youth career and was in the selection pool for the Concacaf. Byars also played exclusively for teams up in age alongside her sister for Solar Soccer Club. She also was a part of the club’s Texas ECNL Conference championship and the Dallas Cup Championship teams. Treasure has been named to the ECNL 1st team All-Conference and traveled to Madrid in 2019 to train with Spain’s national team.

Byars on joining the Mustangs: “I am looking forward to playing at the next level with such a talented group of girls and being able to do it with my older sister, Truth.” 

Nyah Rose  Forward, Freshman | Markham, Ontario/Bill Crothers Secondary School

Rose, a U20’s Canadian national team player was also a four-year letterwinner and three-time honor roll awardee at Bill Crothers Secondary School. She helped lead her team, NDC Ontario, to winning the 2022 League 1 Ontario Championship, a Gold medal at the 2022 Canada Summer Games in Niagara and the 2022 NDC Competition in Laval, Quebec. Rose was also just recently called up to Canada’s U20 national team that competed in the 2023 Concacaf Women’s U20’s Championship.

Rose on joining the Mustangs: “I am most excited for the new opportunities I will get to experience within the team.”

Emma Alvord – Forward, Freshman | Argyle, TX/John H. Guyer HS

Alvord is a local gem that played club for one of the top teams in the country for 10 years, FC Dallas. She was named on Top drawer top 50 rankings and is listed as a 4-star recruit. Emma helped her team place 3rd at the 2022 ECNL National Championships and was also a part of the prestigious Dallas Cup winning team. During her time with FC Dallas she was selected to the 2022 ECNL 2nd All-Conference team. At Denton ISD, she was an Honor Graduate and was a superb track athlete. Emma is the 400m record holder and qualified for state 3 times. She is also a part of the 4×100 and 4×400 relay school record holders.

Alvord on joining the Mustangs: “I am most excited to continue developing as a student and soccer player in my first year at SMU. My teammates, coaches, and support system have prepared me to step into this next chapter of my life with confidence and faith. I believe that we are going to have a great team this year and I cannot wait to see all that we accomplish.”

Layla Garcia-Moreno  Forward, Sophomore | Angamacutiro Michoacan, Mexico/Otero JC/Siglo XXI

Garcia-Moreno arrives from Otero Junior College. There she started 12 games and totaled nine goals, six assists and 24 points. At Otero, she was honored First Team All-Region 9, Most Valuable Player Region 9, Rattler of the Year, High Impact Player, and All-American. In high school at Siglo XXI, she received the Best Academic Performance honor and was named an Exemplary Student in 2022.

Garcia-Moreno on joining the Mustangs: “Joining this program and meeting the people who are part of it is undoubtedly one of the best events in my life. I want to show my gratitude to be here working for the members of this team and giving the best of myself.”

Hayden Halscheid – Forward/Midfielder, Freshman | ACS Cobham International School

Halscheid played for the Singapore American School and ACS Cobham International School in high school. During her career she was awarded MVP three consecutive seasons. She was named the Athlete of the year award and the Golden Boot as a sophomore.  Halscheid tallied 26 goals her junior season and 31 in her senior campaign. She played club for Arsenal U21 WSL Academy Team and went on to win the 2023 Capital Cup.

Halscheid on joining the Mustangs: “I cannot wait to form new connections with my teammates and play with likeminded individuals who are all willing to work hard to achieve the same goal. Additionally, I am excited to develop my skills as a soccer player and experience all that D1 athletics has to offer.”

Aubrey Brown – Goalkeeper, Freshman | Irving, TX/MacArthur HS

Brown was a goalkeeper for FC Dallas 06 ECNL team, helping the club become 2022-23 ECNL Texas Conference Champions. She has attended several USYNT Regional ID Camps and the FC Dallas/FC Bayern Munich partnership camp in Munich, Germany. Aubrey is an SMU President scholar award winner a Prelaw scholar and during high school achieved the National Merit scholar.

Brown on joining the Mustangs: “I am most excited to be a part of multiple facets of life at SMU, from soccer to SMU’s numerous academic/leadership opportunities.”

Addie Vali – Midfielder, Freshman | Highlands Ranch, CO/Rock Canyon HS

Vali was a part of the reputable Real Colorado’s ECNL National Championship team as well as the ODP National travel team. She was a part of the Real team that won the Real and Arsenal Cup for an impressive 7- years in a row. She competed for Rock Canyon high school where she graduated with high school academic honors, was named to the honor roll all four years and received the Chairman award while qualifying for Academic All-State for three years.

Vali on joining the Mustangs: “I cannot wait to start my athletic and academic career at SMU. There is always room to get better and improve and I cannot wait to do that aside of my amazing teammates and with the help of my coaches.”

Bella Burr  Midfielder, Freshman | Virginia Beach, VA/Norfolk Academy

Burr comes to SMU after being named the VISAA Player of the Year, Tidewater Conference Player of the Year, and a United Soccer Coaches All-American in her senior year. In total, Burr tallied 51 goals and 46 assists in high school, and was named to a Tidewater All-Conference team in her sophomore, junior and senior seasons. She also played club ball for Beach FC, and was honored for her 4.0 GPA.

Burr on joining the Mustangs: “I am most excited to be able to experience all SMU has to offer academically while having the opportunity to play the sport I love and better myself everyday alongside great coaches and teammates.”