Ellie Ruf, Athena DiMario Done, Aimee Silva and Robyn Collins to join 2017 Golden Eagles squad.

    The University of Minnesota-Crookston women’s volleyball program announced Wednesday the signing of four student-athletes to National Letters of Intent.


    Robyn Collins, Athena DiMario Done, Ellie Ruf and Aimee Silva will join the 2017 Golden Eagles squad along with fellow newcomers Alysha Haugen, Maggie Peterson, Shonali Pierce, Gabriela Pinto, Vanessa Shelton, Jessica Scott and Jessica Withrow, who signed earlier this year. Maggie Gibbons also returns to the team after a two-year hiatus.


    “I’m excited to add these four student-athletes to the team,” UMC head coach Joe Alianiello said. “We have increased our depth in various positions and the competition level for spots on the field. More importantly, each of them value the opportunity to earn a University of Minnesota degree and they are awesome young women.”


    The emphasis this year for Alianiello was to find student-athletes who possess a strong ability on the pitch as well as strong character and strong academics. For his final four signees, Alianiello was able to find talent within the region, in Canada and in the Northwest.

Robyn Collins
    Collins was born on Oct. 5, 1998 to Ross and Rachel Collins.


    “Robyn has good speed and athleticism,” Alianiello said. “She is going to give us more depth in the backline.”


    Originally from Hudson, Wis., Robyn Collins played soccer at St. Croix Lutheran High School in St. Paul.


    A 5-foot-2 defender/midfielder, Collins played primarily in the back four in high school. She scored one goal during her senior season en route to helping St. Croix Lutheran to a 9-4-2 season record.


    Collins was named Most Improved Player at the conclusion of her senior season.


    In addition to soccer, Collins played basketball and ran track and field during her four-year high school career.


    “I chose U of M Crookston because I like the feel of a smaller campus,” Collins said. “I also chose Minnesota Crookston for its good programs in the animal science field.”


    Collins plans to major in equine science while attending the University of Minnesota-Crookston.

Athena DiMario Done
    DiMario Done was born Nov. 9, 1999 to Steven Done and Josephine DeMario.


    “Athena gives us more competition and depth at the goalkeeper position,” Alianiello said. “She is quick off her line and has good personal sense. She is a great kid and I look forward to her development over the next four years.”


    A 5-foot-9 goalkeeper, DiMario Done played soccer for St. Joseph Catholic High School in Windsore, Ontario and for the White Eagles 99 Soccer Club.


    As a junior, she was named Honorable Mention All-City pick in Windsor and Most Valuable Player at St. Joseph. As a senior, DiMario Done earned Second Team All-City honors.


    “I chose the University of Minnesota-Crookston because it has always been my dream to play soccer at the university level,” DiMario Done said. “When I came to visit I felt like I was at home. The girls were fantastic and it just felt like the right place to be. The U of M Crookston is the place that I knew I would continue my journey at.”


    DiMario Done plans to major in animal science at UMC.

Ellie Ruf
    Ruf was born on Aug. 17, 1999 to Sue and Jim Ruf.


    “Ellie has a lot of potential to be a very solid center back at the Division II level,” Alianiello said. “She has excellent size and athleticism.”


    A 5-foot-6 defender, Ellie Ruf played high school soccer at Maple Grove High School. She also played club soccer for Northwest Kickers in the Twin Cities.


    “I chose the U of M Crookston because I like the size of class and the environment within the school,” Ruf said. “I also really enjoyed the soccer team and coach. They are amazing people and I am excited to be playing with them and to be coached by Coach Alianiello.”


    Ruf plans to major in exercise science while attending UMC.

Aimee Silva
    Silva was born on May 8, 1997 to Sylvia Mendoza.


    “Aimee gives us more immediate experience in our backline,” Alianiello said. “She does a great job of getting forward to support the attack and reads the game well. She will come in and immediately compete for a major role.”


    A 5-foot defender, Silva played soccer at Davis High School in Yakima, Wash. She then played two seasons at Wenatchee Valley College in Wenatchee, Wash, where she scored one goal as a freshman. As a sophomore, Silva tallied one goal and one assist.


    “I chose to come to U of M Crookston not only to continue playing the sport I love and continue my education, but also to experience new places since I’ve lived in the Pacific Northwest my whole life,” Silva said. “I enjoyed the small campus and the welcoming people, expecially my future teammates.”


    Silva plans to major in exercise science at UMC.