”Congratulations to those three as it was a good choice,” said Duke head coach Robbie Church. “This year more than I can remember in our 11 seasons at Duke, we have an excellent group of juniors and seniors and a lot of qualified candidates, but I think those three are going to be great leaders for us both on and off the field.”
The trio helped guide the Blue Devils to the 2011 NCAA College Cup, the 2011 ACC Regular Season title with a school-record eight league wins and a school-record 22 victories a year ago.
Campbell, who is a product of Cincinnati, Ohio, will be a tri-captain for the second straight year. She is coming off having a record-breaking season for the Blue Devils in goal as she totaled as school-record 14 shutouts and a 0.48 goals-against average. Duke matched a school record low with only 13 goals allowed and as a team posted a record 16 shutouts. Campbell was a second team All-ACC selection and second team All-Southeast Region selection.
A native of Massapequa Park, N.Y., DeCesare was a key part of the Blue Devil offense in 2011 even though she started only two of 27 contests. A 5-10 midfielder/defender, she totaled five goals and one assist for 11 points on the season. DeCesare totaled three of her five goals in the postseason, including one against Long Beach State in the NCAA Elite Eight and one in the NCAA College Cup versus Wake Forest in the semifinals. She was a member of the All-ACC Tournament team.
Simpkins, a 5-8 forward from Concord, N.C., came off the bench in 25 contests a year ago for the Blue Devils. She tallied two goals and two assists on the year, including key assists versus national powers Notre Dame and Texas A&M. Her two goals came in the season opener against Army and in the NCAA Tournament first round versus Radford. She has played in 48 career contests.
“We always include all our seniors as leaders and making decisions and it’s important for that senior class,” commented Church. “We’re excited about Tara, Kim and Callie. They’re very quality individuals – all three of them and they do a great job for us both in the classroom and on the field.”
Duke will open practice for the 2012 campaign on August 2. The Blue Devils return all 11 starters and a total of 20 letterwinners from their record-breaking season from a year ago as Church enters his 12th season at Duke.
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