Trio of Cloud County Thunderbirds Sign with NAIA Programs on Tuesday
With just a few days left before the 2019 commencement ceremony, three Cloud County Community College women's soccer players received an early graduation present as Gabriela de Jesus, Yohanna Duliep and Paulina Maiguel all signed with four-year institutions on Tuesday.
All three were key parts of a sophomore class that helped relaunch the Cloud County women's soccer program prior to the 2017 season. The class finished with a 30-7-1 overall record the last two seasons, which included a Region VI Championship and the first national tournament appearance in school history in 2017.
Duliep inked with Talladega College, an NAIA program located in Alabama, while de Jesus and Maiguel will also be heading to NAIA institutions as de Jesus signed with Louisiana State University-Shreveport and Maiguel committed to Mount Marty College in South Dakota.
De Jesus is a sophomore midfielder out of Belo Horizonte, Brazil, who played in 30 career games for the T-Birds with 15 games started.
She scored four career goals, two of which were game-winning goals, and tallied 11 points in her two seasons. As a sophomore, de Jesus scored three goals and added two assists while putting 10 of her 15 shots on goal en route to earning Second-Team All-Conference in the KJCCC.
"She's a very intelligent player, a very mature player who understands the game really well. I think at LSU-Shreveport, she'll be able to handle the outside midfielder spot if that's where they end up playing her," said Cloud County head coach, Charles Long. "Probably of all the girls this fall, she was the most professional. She knew when she was needed and what her role was on the team."
Duliep is a sophomore out Miami, Florida who saw time as a defenseman and midfielder. She played in 25 career games for Cloud County, earning five starts, while tallying two goals and two career assists playing primarily as a defender.
"'Yoyo' is going to do real well there. She's probably going to play as an outside midfielder for them, which should give her an opportunity to score some goals," Long said of Duliep. "I'm really excited for her and it'll be a great opportunity there to continue to play college ball. I think she'll be a big help for their program there."
Maiguel is a native of Santa Marta, Colombia. She earned playing time in nine career games for the T-Birds, including four starts as a freshman in the midfield.
"Paulina will definitely start for them and be an asset for their program," Long said. "I think she'll step in there and end up starting for them at center midfield. I think it'll be a good experience for her, soccer wise, and I think she'll enjoy the environment and support she gets there."