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    Likhite Introduces Five Wildcat Freshmen for 2014

    NUSPORTSDOTCOM April Likhite introduced five talented individuals who signed NLIs to join her program in 2014.
    April Likhite introduced five talented individuals who signed NLIs to join her program in 2014.

    April 22, 2014

    EVANSTON, Ill. -- Northwestern head coach April Likhite announced today (Tuesday) the five individuals making up her 2014 signing class, a group composed of high achievers in their high school running and academic careers.

    Of the five newcomers, two hail from Likhite's home state of Wisconsin, two will be remaining close to their Chicago roots while one arrives at NU from southern California.

    "I am extremely honored to have these five young women join our cross country program," Likhite said. "They collectively bring to our family solid athletic credentials and, equally important, they embrace the core values that our University stands for. This class understands and is excited about our program goals and the direction in which we are headed, and I look forward to them making a consistent impact on our team over the next four years."

    Detailed bio information on each incoming Wildcat can be found below:

    Northwestern's 2014 Recruiting Class
    Name Ht. Hometown High School
    Haley Albers 5-10 Downers Grove, Ill. Downers Grove South
    Victoria Bianco 5-3 Chicago, Ill. Latin School
    Sara Coffey 5-3 Whitefish Bay, Wis. Whitefish Bay
    Brooke Pigneri 5-5 Laguna Niguel, Calif. Santa Margarita Catholic
    Isabel Seidel 5-6 Nashotah, Wis. University Lake School



    Haley Albers
    Downers Grove, Ill. • Downers Grove South

    High School: Named MVP of the Downers Grove South Cross Country team as a senior in 2013 ... Earned All-West Suburban Conference Gold, All-Region and All-Section honors all four years in both cross country and track ... Also qualified for state championship events in both sports each year of competition ... Placed 12th in the 3,200-meter race at the 2013 IHSA 3A state track and field finals and eighth at the Illinois Prep Top Times meet in the 3,200 ... Two-sport team captain ... Helped Downers Grove extend its streak of conference cross country championships to 15 straight years and contributed to a team that finished ninth in the state in cross country ... Earned Presidents' Honor Roll status all four years and was a member of the National Honor Society and Spanish Honor Society ... Also an IHSA Scholar and WSC Gold Scholar.

    Personal: Born Haley I. Albers in Huntsville, Ala. ... Daughter of Stephen and Karen Albers ... Brother is a football and track student-athlete at Case Western Reserve in Cleveland ... Head track coach (Egle Staisiunaite) was an Olympian in the 400-meter hurdles from Lithuania ... Participated in numerous community outreach activities, including volunteerism at Hinsdale Hospital, Sunday School teaching and a pair of mission trips ... Chose Northwestern over Boston College, Butler and Cornell ... Plans to major in biomedical engineering.

    Victoria Bianco
    Chicago, Ill. • Latin School

    High School: Three-time team MVP in cross country and the school record-holder at the 3-mile distance ... Two-time all-state in cross country, finishing seventh in the state as a senior and ninth as a junior ... Three-time state qualifier and two-time sectional champion as well as a three-time regional champ, three-time conference champ and four-time all-conference honoree ... Team placed third at state in 2013 after winning conference, regional and sectional championships ... In track, received team MVP honors and was 11th at the IPTT 1,600-meter race ... Three-time state qualifier and two-time sectional champion in track ... Two-sport team captain ... Member of the National Latin Language Honor Society and named an AP Scholar with Honors.

    Personal: Born Victoria Anne Bianco ... Daughter of James and JoAnne Bianco ... Mother attended Northwestern's Kellogg School of Management ... College major is undecided.

    Sara Coffey
    Whitefish Bay, Wis. • Whitefish Bay

    High School: Won a North Shore Conference championship in the 1,600 and 3,200-meter events in track and also won a regional championship in the two-mile as a junior in 2013 ... Received All-Area honors in cross country and track ... Four-time cross country state qualifier and qualified as a member of the 1,600 and 3,200-meter relay teams in track ... Recipient of the Duke Pride Award for outstanding leadership in athletics ... Distance MVP award winner in track ... Cross country team qualified for state championships all four years and won four straight conference and sectional championships ... Team was the runner-up in 2013 at Wisconsin state cross country championships ... Two-year team captain in both sports ... Member of the National Honor Society and a four-year high honor roll student, as well as an All-Conference Student-Athlete.

    Personal: Born Sara Cleary Coffey ... Daughter of Peter Coffey and Kristine Cleary ... Father attended Kellogg School of Management and grandmother attended Northwestern ... Also the cousin of former NU field hockey player Marnie Robbins ... Chose Northwestern over Marquette, Miami (Ohio) and Santa Clara ... Future major is undecided.

    Brooke Pigneri
    Laguna Niguel, Calif.. • Santa Margarita Catholic

    High School: 2012 All-Trinity League varsity runner ... Team's 2012 cross country Runner of the Year ... Two-time JV Trinity League 1,600-meter champion and 2013 Varsity Trinity League 1,600-meter champ ... Owns personal bests of 19:16 in the 5K, 5:09 in the 1,600 and 11:55 in the 3,200 ... Helped team advance to CIF Division 3 state championship in 2011 and 2012, placing sixth and 17th, respectively ... Member of National Honor Society and four-year honor roll honoree ... Member of California Scholarship Federation.

    Personal: Born Brooke Alyson Pigneri ... Daughter of Robert and Denise Pigneri ... Chose Northwestern over Johns Hopkins, UC-San Diego and MIT ... Plans to major in chemistry and pursue a career in the pharmaceutical industry.

    Isabel Seidel
    Nashotah, Wis. • University Lake School

    High School: Lettered in four varsity sports during her career at University Lake School, including cross country, track, alpine skiing and field hockey ... Two-time team MVP in cross country ... Three-time cross country All-Indian Trails Conference and second-team all-state performer ... Champion of the 2013 Janesville Craig Midwest Invitational (XC) ... Also first-team all-state in Division III for track and field ... Won eight state medals combined between track and cross country ... Three-sport team captain ... Named the Most Valuable Offensive Player of her field hockey team in two different seasons and was a three-time Alpine Skiing Eastern Championship qualifier ... Student Government class representative and a member of the Cum Laude Society ... Also a recipient of the Scholastic Art and Writing Awards and a four-year ULS Excellence Award honoree for academic achievement.

    Personal: Borgn Isabel Grace Seidel ... Daughter of Frederick and Anne Seidel ... Competed against future NU teammates Andrea Ostenso and Sara Coffey in high school ... Chose Northwestern over Notre Dame, Boston College, Brown and Wake Forest ... Plans to major in journalism.


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