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Senior Dyana Russell returns to lead the MU defensive squad during her senior season ? one of the finest defensive players in the country, the team captain tops the competitive Big 12 Conference as one of the best players in the region.
Junior (2000): Started all 20 of Missouri's matches ? was part of a Tiger defense that allowed only 36 goals ? led MU's defenders in three points from three assists during the season ? was named to the All-Big 12 second team ... was honored as the MU Kickers Club Defensive Player of the Year ... was also a Big 12 all-conference preseason selection.
Sophomore (1999): Keyed Missouri's physical style of play with tremendous effort in the backfield ... started every match for MU ... played every minute of Missouri's last 17 matches, as the team advanced to the NCAA Tournament for the first time ... battled with the Big 12's best offensive weapons, at times single-handedly stopping an opponent's team charge.
Freshman (1998): Started 18 of MU's 20 matches her rookie season ... provided excellent defensive play as the Tigers allowed a total of 36 goals.
Prep: Russell was an all-area and all-district first-team player at Tomball High School (Texas) ... she was a member of the Texas Olympic Development Team for three years and participated in a European Spring Tour for talented players from her home region ... along with her soccer prowess, she was a three-time letterwinner in cross country while in high school.
Personal: Dyana is the daughter of David and Rosemary Russell ... she was born May 15, 1980 ... is majoring in general agriculture.
COACH BLITZ ON RUSSELL
"Dyana is a fierce competitor. There is no challenge that she isn't willing to face that also makes her a solid leader. She perfectly mirrors the blue collar work ethic we have based our program on."