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Norwin's Roth to play soccer for Pitt Johnstown

| Wednesday, April 17, 2013, 9:00 p.m.
Doug Gulasy | Norwin Star
Norwin senior Danielle Roth poses with her letter of intent to play soccer at Pitt-Johnstown in 2013 at the Norwin High School library on Wednesday, April 10, 2013. Seated next to Danielle are her parents Tony (left) and Tina (right). In back are Norwin High School principal Edward Federinko and athletic director Randy Rovesti.

Danielle Roth's soccer career at Norwin ended two seasons ago, but that won't stop her from representing her high school at the next level.

Roth signed a letter of intent last week to play soccer at Pitt Johnstown.

“I know a few girls who are on the team, and one of my friends I used to play with is going there,” Roth said. “The coach is awesome. Out of all the colleges I went to, that's the one I felt most comfortable with.”

Familiarity played a big role in Roth's ultimate decision.

Norwin graduate Alex Kalup will be a junior on next year's team, and Southmoreland's Emily Helms — with whom Roth played in club soccer ­— also plans to attend Pitt Johnstown.

“It will make the adjustment better from home to college,” Roth said.

Roth played for two seasons at Norwin but tore the anterior cruciate ligament in her knee during her sophomore season. After that, she played exclusively for the Foothills Soccer Club in Youngwood.

“We're very proud of Dani, and we're sure she will represent Norwin well at Pitt Johnstown,” Norwin athletic director Randy Rovesti said. “I'm very excited to see her career take place and wish her all the best in her athletic and academic pursuits.”

Pitt Johnstown competes in the West Virginia Intercollegiate Athletic Conference in NCAA Division II. The Mountain Cats finished 11-7 in 2012 under interim coach Ali Afshar, who took the reins when Jim Herlinger went on medical leave early in the season.

Roth said that success and the university's education program were also determining factors in her decision to attend Pitt Johnstown. She plans to major in elementary education and minor in special education in college.

While Roth said she can play both defender and midfield, she especially likes defense and hopes to make an impact there.

“(I like) knowing that I'm the last person before they get to shoot,” she said. “For me, protecting the goalie is one of my main goals. I'm very protective of my goalie.”

Doug Gulasy is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-388-5830 or via Twitter @dgulasy_Trib.

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