University of Iowa announces 2021 recruiting class
IOWA CITY, Iowa – The University of Iowa soccer team has signed four prep student-athletes who will join the program in the fall of 2021, head coach Dave DiIanni announced.
“We’re excited to welcome this class to our program,” said DiIanni. “All three of the field players are from the State of Iowa, which is exciting, and Blythe is an athletic goalkeeper that will be a great addition to that position group.”
The class consists of goalkeeper Blythe Braun (Downers Grove, Ill.), forward Delaney Holtey (Cedar Rapids, Iowa), midfielder Alyssa Kellar (Treynor, Iowa), and forward/midfielder Kenzie Rolling (Waverly, Iowa).
Three of the four players are native Iowans, while the fourth hails from Illinois. The group consists of one goalkeeper, two forwards, and one midfielder.
|Blythe Braun||GK||5-8||Downers Grove, Ill./Downers Grove North|
|Delaney Holtey||F||5-7||Cedar Rapids, Iowa/John F. Kennedy|
|Alyssa Kellar||M||5-7||Treynor, Iowa/Treynor|
|Kenzie Roling||F/M||5-6||Waverly, Iowa/Waverly-Shell Rock|
Downers Grove, Ill.
Downers Grove North High School (Brian Papa, Christine Tomek)
Lyons Township SC (John Koeune)
High School – Illinois ODP State Team in 2019-20… selected for the 2020 Midwest ODP Regional Pool… U19 Presidents Cup finalist in 2018 with Team Chicago SC… three-time Max Preps Player of the Game in 2019… Road Runner SC Gold Glove Award recipient… competed internationally in 2018 with Road Runners SC in France, Belgium, and the Netherlands… played for Road Runners SC (2014-18), Team Chicago (2018-19), and Lyons Township (2019-21)… freshman team captain and senior team captain at Downers Grove High School… made 103 saves in 18 games as sophomore… National Honor Society (2020-21) and Honor Roll (2017-21)… high school coaches were Brian Papa and Christine Tomek… club coach is John Koeune.
Personal – Born April 17, 2003, in Hinsdale, Illinois… daughter of Jennifer Braun… has an older sister, Gillian… majoring in international business.
“Hawkeye Nation represents everything I want in a college. My decision was clear after meeting the coaching staff and realizing they would push me to achieve my goals and set new ones.”
Associate head coach/goalkeeper coach Blair Quinn on Braun
“We saw Blythe at our ID camp and were immediately impressed with her fearlessness. She has a great presence in goal, a big personality, and tremendous potential. We are looking forward to her joining us and strengthening a very good goalkeeping corp.”
High School – Earned All-Mississippi Valley Conference second-team, Class 3A East second-team all-district, and All-Metro second-team honors as a freshman… scored 11 goals and had six assists in leading team to an 11-3 record as a freshman… had two goals and three assists as a sophomore… played for the Heartland Soccer Club from 2009-13, F.C. United from 2013-19, and Iowa Rush from 2019-21… three-time Academic Athlete Award recipient… National Honor Society… scored in 90th percentile and above on Iowa assessment tests… high school coaches were Homer Screws and Annie Feltes… club coaches were Bill Ajram (F.C. United) and Daryl Brazeau (Iowa Rush).
Personal – Born April 13, 2003, in St. Louis, Missouri… daughter of Chris and Amanda Holtey… has a younger brother, Caden… majoring in health and human physiology.
“I chose to attend the University of Iowa because the campus feels like home and the coaching staff pushes me to become better on and off the field.”
Coach DiIanni on Holtey
“Delaney is a back to goal forward who has the ability to learn an attacking mid position facing goal. She will be adding to the depth of our program at those positions.”
High School – Two-time second-team all-state and Des Moines Register All-Iowa Team selection… two-time first-team all-conference and all-district honoree… led team to a pair of Western Iowa Conference titles… team captain as a sophomore… led team to a 17-1 record as freshman and 12-3 mark as sophomore… scored 33 goals and had 17 assists as freshman, finishing second in points (83) for all classes in the state, and 25 goals and 15 assists as sophomore… school record holder for goals and points in a season and career… played for Gretna Elite Academy (2012-present) and Gretna Elite Academy ECNL 02… captained the 2020 Nebraska State Cup finalist team… 2019 Nebraska State champions… 2018-19 ECNL North American Cup Playoffs runner-up… 2013 Nebraska State Cup Finalist… also excelled in softball and basketball… second-team all-state and three-time all-conference infielder in softball… led team to state tournament as a junior where she posted the second-best single-season batting average in school history… led the basketball team to state tournament as a freshman… three-year academic letter and four-year Honor Roll recipient… high school coach was Shane Jacobsen… club coach was Marcus Kelcher.
Personal – Born Nov. 29, 2002, in Council Bluffs, Iowa… daughter of Mitch and Heather Kellar… has an older sister, Alexis, and two younger brothers, Andrew and Aiden… sister played college soccer at Iowa Western Community College… undecided on major.
“I chose the University of Iowa because the first time I visited the campus and athletic facilities, it felt like home. Along with receiving a great education, the opportunity to play Big Ten soccer in my home state with a great coaching staff was something I couldn’t pass up.”
Coach DiIanni on Kellar
“Alyssa is a dynamic, two-footed center midfielder who has a knack of creating opportunities for herself and her teammates in the final third. She’s driven to succeed and compete and that comes out in her success as a three-sport athlete.”
High School – Gatorade Player of the Year nominee as a junior… five-time club state champion for the Iowa Rush Soccer Club… regional finalist as a sophomore… competed at Nationals… two-time Regional ODP team member… Des Moines Register Elite 11 Team selection as a sophomore; Des Moines Register first-team all-state as freshman… two-time all-state, all-district, and All-Northeast Conference selection… state all-tournament team honoree… two-time team conference champion and two-time state runner-up, leading team to a 20-1-0 record as freshman and 17-2-0 as sophomore… scored 30 goals (on 55 shots) and had 12 assists as a freshman and 38 goals and eight assists as a sophomore… four-time Iowa Rush team captain… Beep Test record holder for Iowa Rush Soccer Club… also was an all-conference guard in basketball, helping team to two conference titles and two state tournament appearances… was the team’s highest scoring and highest assisting freshman… National Honor Society… four-time Dean’s List honoree… ranked No. 1 in her class… high school coach is Lauren Greiner; club coach is Daryl Brazaeu.
Personal – Born on April 2, 2003, in Waterloo, Iowa… daughter of Brad and Amy Roling… has a younger brother, Brady… grandfather, Jerry Roling, played football at Northern Iowa, and uncle, Nick Ratchford, played football at Coe College… undecided on a major.
“I knew from a young age that I loved soccer and wanted to play in college. The University of Iowa was always a school that I dreamed of playing for. After many years of searching for the perfect school, I circled back to Iowa. I could not stay away from the urban campus, homey atmosphere, coaching staff, and the team culture. The core values and constant support creates a team environment that intrigued me from the beginning. I am beyond excited to not only be a Hawkeye, but play soccer as one.”
Coach DiIanni on Roling
“Kenzie is a player who has improved so much since she committed to the University of Iowa. You hope that a commitment to a school only creates a new fire to burn and get better. She has the ability to play in the front line and as a midfielder in the attacking position. As a senior, she has turned into a consistent goal scorer for her club and high school teams.”