The Ferris State University women's soccer program has secured the services of another talented high school performer as Audra Merino (Belvidere, Ill./Rockford Boylan Catholic) is the latest individual to sign with the Bulldogs in announcement made by FSU head coach Neathan Gibson.
A 5-4 defender, Merino enters her senior year at Rockford's (Ill.) Boylan Catholic High School this spring as a member of head coach Mark Couper's team. She earned All-NIC 10 Conference honors last season as a junior while helping the Titans to both their second consecutive league and regional championship titles. As a starter, Merino garnered two points on a goal in the 2009 season but also was an integral part of the Titans' defense which limited the opposition to only one goal in conference play.
Merino played at the defender position on BCHS' varsity team in her 2008 sophomore year after serving in a starting capacity on the junior varsity squad as a freshman in the 2007 season. She played 10 years in club soccer for the Rockford Dactyls and has been a three-year (2005-07) Illinois Olympic Development Program (ODP) regional player participant.
Academically, Merino is a member of the school's Green Club, Italian Club, National Honor Society, Senior Retreat Team, and Student Council.
The daughter of Lee and Joni Merino of Belvidere, Ill., Audra will graduate this June and plans to major in pharmacy at Ferris State. Her older sister, Kylee Merino, will be a senior defender on the 2010 Grand Valley State University women's soccer team.
Merino joins goalkeeper Rachel McCollum (Grand Blanc), midfielder Cassie VanderSloot (Portage/Northern), defender-midfielder Courtney Ratz (Naperville, Ill./Neuqua Valley), and forward Laurel Rapson (Bay City/Central) as the current members of the Bulldogs' 2010 recruiting class.