The sixteenth-ranked John Brown University women's soccer team added four members to the squad on Wednesday, Nov. 10, when head coach Kathleen Paulsen announced the quartet of new faces as part of National Signing Day.
The Golden Eagles signed defender Grace Bishop of College Heights Christian in Joplin, Mo.; midfielder Renny Buchanan of Heritage in Brentwood, Calif.; midfielder Bella Graber of Valor Christian in Highlands Ranch, Colo.; and defender Kaelyn Mole of Radford High School in Honolulu, Hawaii.
"I am excited to welcome the Class of '25 to the Golden Eagle Family!" Paulsen said in a press release. "This group comes from all over the nation and brings with them a diverse set of skills and abilities to the soccer field. While they have a diverse set of skills, the thing they all hold in common is a deep commitment to their faith in Jesus Christ and high level of character. What has drawn them to JBU is a collective desire to pursue a Christ-centered team culture that fights for excellence in every aspect of their lives.
"I believe this class will fit well within the current culture and legacy of the women from this program."
Grace Bishop, defender
• Club team: Sporting Springfield
• Dual-sport athlete also claimed All-State accolades in both track and cross country.
• Helped guide Sporting Springfield to Heartland League's first division championship and a 2019 Disney World College Showcase title.
• Earned four consecutive Honor Roll selections.
Why John Brown? "I picked John Brown University because of the academic and athletic excellence. JBU gives me the opportunity to pursue my dream of being a pediatric nurse. I am looking forward to the hardworking and intense environment of the program!" -- Grace Bishop
What Coach Paulsen says: "Grace is a versatile player that is hard-nose, gritty, and competitive. She is never going to shy out of a big tackle and anticipates where she needs to be as the play is happening. Along with these attributes, she is calm on the ball, makes good decisions once she has the ball, and can serve a quality ball in the air when she needs to."
Renny Buchanan, midfielder
• Club team: Diablo FC
• Named to the All-Bay Valley Athletic League first team in back-to-back seasons.
• Four-year letter winner under head coach Arnol Arceta.
• Team MVP honors for soccer, track and cross country programs.
• Maintained perfect 4.0 grade-point average during high school academic career.
Why John Brown? "The team, education and environment is nothing like I have seen before. The people are all so amazing and the Christ-centered community is unmatched!" -- Renny Buchanan
What Coach Paulsen says: "Renny has a huge engine and will always be one of the fittest players on the field. She will be able to cover the ground needed to be involved on the offensive and defensive side of the ball. Along with that, she has a strong soccer IQ and has great decision making when it comes to possession and services into the box."
Bella Graber, midfielder
• Club team: Real Colorado
• Led Valor Christian to 4A state runner-up finish in 2018, after capturing Jefferson County Conference title.
• Named to the Academic All-State team in consecutive seasons.
• Earned four letters under head coach Brian Shultz at Valor Christian.
Why John Brown? "I picked JBU not only because of the high-quality women's soccer program, but the culture, strong nursing program and faith-driven community." -- Bella Graber
What Coach Paulsen says: "Bella is a true midfielder with great vision, a fantastic work rate, and the ability to have composure on the ball. She does a great job of covering a lot of ground so that she can be in and out of gaps to be a playmaker in the middle. The mixture of her technical ability and her ability to distribute will be a valuable asset for our team."
Kaelyn Mole, defender
• Club team: Surf SC Hawaii
• Started career at Rockbridge Academy with 13 goals in 14 appearances in freshman season.
• Later transferred to Radford and spent a pair of seasons under head coach Sheri Uyematsu, leading the squad in scoring as a junior.
• Named team MVP as a junior and selected to All-Oahu Interscholastic Association honorable mention list.
• Back-to-back years on Pricipal's List at Radford.
Why John Brown? "I knew I wanted to come to JBU because of the rigorous academics and Christ-centered culture of the program." -- Kaelyn Mole
What Coach Paulsen says: "Kaelyn can also play in a variety of positions and has an incredibly high work rate. She is good in tight spaces and has the ability to help her team keep the ball. She is always looking to be in a position to receive the ball and be an important link in possession. As a defender, she reads the game well and knows when to step and when to drop into space."