Zoe Ahlers signs with her dad, Brent, and mom, Cara, in front row, back row are her sister, Maeze, Coach Abby Federmann and brother, Mason.EDWARDSVILLE - Zoe Ahlers, a very hard-working defender and midfielder for the Edwardsville High School girls soccer team, signed a letter of intent to attend the University of Evansville in Evansville, Ind.

Ahlers, who scored two goals, including a game-winner, and had three assists last season for the Tigers, felt immediately at home at Evansville, and that was a deciding factor in why she signed with the school.

"The second I stepped on the campus, the coaches and the girls made me feel right at home," Ahlers said in an interview that followed the ceremony, "and they were so funny, so sweet, and just made me feel at home."

Ahlers is a defensive specialist with a high work rate, and will bring that same work ethic to the Aces' backfield in the 2020 fall season.

"I'm looking to provide a lot of defense," Ahlers said, "and also be a solid person back there in the line. I'm looking to play wide back and center back. That's what (head coach Chris Pfau) recruited me as, and I'm hoping to start next year. I'm gonna work my booty off," Ahlers said with a smile and laugh.

The Aces compete in the Missouri Valley Conference, where Ahlers will face former Tigers' player Paityn Schneider at SIU-Carbondale, along with other schools such as Illinois State, Loyola of Chicago, Valparaiso and Missouri State, among others. The Illinois teams in the Valley will allow Ahlers' parents, Brent and Cara, to attend her matches easily.

Edwardsville head coach Abby Federmann thinks that Ahlers will bring her strong work ethic and leadership to Evansville.

"Zoe is a work horse," Federmann said, "and she is going to step out on that field at Evansville, and her coaches are going to realize that they've got somebody they can rely on to work hard, and help her teammates out, and I have a feeling she'll be in a leadership role very quickly."

Ahlers will major in psychology and minor in criminal law, with an eye towards attending law school after graduation. As far as what kind of law she wants to practice down the road, Ahlers hasn't decided yet.

"I honestly don't know; that is a good question," Ahlers said with a hearty laugh. "I have time to figure it out, I guess, though."

Ahlers also considered the University of Dayton, Presbyterian College in Clinton, S.C., and Indiana-Purdue Ft. Wayne before deciding to go to Evansville. As far as this coming season with Edwardsville, Ahlers will bring her skill set and leadership to the forefront.

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