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Appalachian State Field Hockey Adds Six Players

App State field hockey head coach Emily Dinsmore announced the addition of six players to the 2024-25 roster Friday. The team will welcome three international players and three U.S. players to Boone in the fall.

“We have a lot of talent joining our squad this fall,” Dinsmore said. “I can’t wait to see how they will add to what we have already built as a team. I am confident they will help us in our goal of winning championships and competing in the NCAA Tournament.”

Emma Rondou | Midfielder | Braden, Belgium | Notre Dame de Basse
Rondou is an accomplished midfielder who has competed at the highest level in Belgium for eight years. She started in every game played this past season and showcased her ability to distribute the ball, dishing out five assists while netting three goals. A member of Koninklijke Hockey Club in Leuven, Rondou and her team were crowned champions of the National 1 league. Rondou is bilingual and is on track to graduate from a French-speaking high school in June.

Why Rondou chose App State: “I was searching to see if I could play field hockey and study in the U.S. When App State contacted me, I was very excited for the opportunity to play. I’m so excited to be a Mountaineer.”

Dinsmore on Rondou: “Emma is a dynamic midfield player with a never-give-up mentality. She has great speed and endurance, and she does a good job finding the next pass. Emma’s competitiveness will help elevate our team this upcoming fall.”

Darby Reyburn | Midfielder | Allentown, Pa. | Liberty Online Academy
Reyburn comes to the High Country after a decorated prep career. She was a two-time letterwinner at Parkland High School where she was named All-Conference as a freshman, before qualifying for the state playoffs in 2021. Reyburn shined for her club team, WC Eagles, amassing gold medals at both the Shooting Star Showcase and Regional Club Championships in 2022. In 2023, her team took home silver medals at the Junior Premiere Hockey showcase. Her team also won gold at the Disney Field Hockey showcase in 2021, which was played at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex in Orlando. Academically, Reyburn is an Honor Roll student.

Why Reyburn chose App State: “App State has strong academics and a great community that I can’t wait to be a part of.”

Dinsmore on Reyburn: “Darby is a defensive midfielder with great vision and communication skills. Her grit and fearless attitude have helped shape who she is as a player We are excited to add another defensive threat to our team this season.”

Avery Johnsen | Forward | Falmouth, Mass. | Falmouth
From Falmouth, Mass., Johnsen comes to App State with several individual accolades at Falmouth High School. Her prowess as a striker helped her lead the Cape and Islands League in points each of the last two seasons, which led to her being named League MVP in 2023. This past year, she became her high school’s all-time points leader, eclipsing 100 career points. She was a three-time all-star at Falmouth and was named her team’s captain in her final year. Johnsen was also a part of the Cape Cod Field Hockey Club, coached by Courtney and Kyle Capallo. In the classroom, Johnsen was a member of the National Honor Society and was an Honor Roll student.

Why Johnsen chose App State: “I chose App State because all three of my brothers are in college in the Carolinas and I wanted to go to school near them. I also wanted to play Division I field hockey and when I toured App State and met the coaches and team, I fell in love, and I knew that I wanted to come here.”

Dinsmore on Johnsen: “Avery is extremely fast and has a high work ethic. Her experience playing ice hockey gives her a unique skillset on the forward line. We are looking forward to the passion and energy that Avery will bring to our team.”

Baylie Phillips | Midfielder | Delmar, Del. | Delmar
A two-sport athlete at Delmar High School in Delaware, Phillips brings a winning pedigree to App State. She was a five-time state champion and was a part of a program that won 111 straight contests during her high school career. Phillips’ athletic ability helped her earn All-Conference honors in both field hockey and soccer while also being a three-time All-State selection in field hockey. She was a member of Shore Byrds Field Hockey, coached by Juli Bradford, that took home the National Hockey Festival championship in 2022. Additionally, Phillips helped guide Delmar to a No. 1 ranking in the state of Delaware in 2022. Phillips is a two-time academic All-Conference selection and a recipient of the Crown Trophy for Academic excellence in both 2022 and 2023.

Why Phillips chose App State: “I chose App State because of the atmosphere and camaraderie with the team and the beautiful campus.”

Dinsmore on Phillips: “Baylie is a crafty midfielder with great distribution skills. She has great field awareness and makes difficult plays look simple. Baylie’s drive and competitive nature will be a great addition to our team this fall.

Franziska “Zissi” Heyltjes | Forward | Mülheim, Germany | Luisenshule-Gymnasium
An attacking forward from Germany, Heyltjes is set to join the Mountaineers this fall to make her United States debut. She played at one of the highest levels in competitive field hockey in Germany, competing for HTC Uhlenhorst in the 1st Senior Division of the Bundesliga. Heyltjes brings a wealth of championship experience to the High Country as she is a two-time Vize German Champion, most recently winning gold at the tournament in 2021, while participating in the indoor and outdoor German Championships. She will also be competitive in the classroom as she will pursue a degree in marketing.

Why Heyltjes chose App State: “I’m excited for the new experiences that will come at App State, while also being able to play field hockey for a great program.”

Dinsmore on Heyltjes: “Zissi is a strong, aggressive forward. She brings high energy and does a great job creating circle outcomes. We are looking forward to adding another attacking threat to our team this season.”

Frederique Grimbergen | Midfielder | Maarssen, The Netherlands | Niftarlake College
Participating at the highest level in youth field hockey in The Netherlands, Grimbergen brings speed and skill to App State, where she will make her United States debut in the fall. Grimbergen has played for her club team, Schaerweijde, since she was 16 and played center and left midfield this past season. She was selected to participate for the Dutch National team in 2021 as a 14-year-old, while also being selected to participate in several high-performance hockey academies. As a youth player in Maarssen, Grimbergen won several championships, including a regional title in Amsterdam in 2019, which helped her club be promoted to the top class in the region.

Why Grimbergen chose App State: “App State has great facilities and is in a beautiful place. The program has been successful in recent years, and I’m excited to be a part of the winning culture.”

Dinsmore on Grimbergen: “Frederique is a skilled and speedy midfielder who is a student of the game. Frederique’s experience playing at the highest level in The Netherlands along with training for the U16 national team will bring a competitive edge to our team.”

App State is excited to welcome all six student-athletes to the High Country this fall.