Juniata County has been a soccer hotbed for quite a while now. Starting young at the Lion’s Den, getting better through their high school years at Juniata and East Juniata and then going on to star in college. Here’s how some of our former area stars did this past season.

Pitt-Greensburg sophomore Nylah Pannebaker (Juniata High School) started all 19 games this season for the 16-3 Bobcats, who lost in the AMCC championship game.

Lock Haven University’s Josie Swartz (Juniata High School) finished up her senior season for the Bald Eagles starting all 18 games, scoring four times with a team-high 12 points.

LHU sophomore Janessa Swartz (Juniata High School) started six games this past season, playing in 17, scoring a goal and contributing an assist.

East Juniata alum Leah Sankey, started every game as a freshman for King’s College, leading the team in goals (5) and points (10).

Penn State Greater Allegheny’s Stuart Dare (Juniata High School) had an incredible season, leading his team in goals (12) in his freshman season. He was also named USCAA Men’s Division II Soccer Player of the Week in early October.

Madison McDonald (East Juniata) played in four games for the Lebanon Valley College women this fall. The defender helped the Flying Dutchman hold their opponents to just two goals in those four games in which she played.

Gannon Ryan (East Juniata) saw action in five games during his freshman season at Washington & Jefferson.

Messiah is an impressive 16-2-1 so far this season, champions of the MAC Commonwealth and headed to the NCAA tournament, thanks in part to defender Thea Neimond (East Juniata). Thea played in all 19 games so far, starting eight, for a defense that allowed less than half-a-goal a game this season. She even scored four goals herself, adding a pair of assists.

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