Last week, the Tennessee Lady Vols welcomed a new head coach. Today, they welcome a new player. FC Alliance’s Peyton Thomas committed to Coach Brian Pensky this evening, ending several days of suspense as multiple SEC schools wrestled for her signature. The powerful central midfielder ultimately could not pass up on the opportunity to wear Tennessee orange. It marks the second year in a row that an FC Alliance player has become a Lady Vol. Last year, it was Kaelyn Angelo. This year, Thomas got the call. FC Alliance directors hope to continue the trend in the future, as they’ve expressed a great deal of excitement in the Pensky hire.
Despite have a number of major offers, strong family connections to Tennessee helped sway Thomas to Rocky Top.
"I’ve always liked UT," she stated. "My older sister and mom went there."
Her coach, U15-U18 Director Jon Schneider, feels as if she can make an immediate impact at the next level.
"She will add great work ethic, size, and athleticism," Schneider said. "She’ll improve an already solid team."
Thomas marks the second player this week for FC Alliance 94 Black to join the SEC. Earlier, Teni Butler committed to Arkansas. A third player, Chloe Brackett, is weighing an offer from Ole Miss .
As for Peyton Thomas, the recruiting process is finally over and her decision is easily explained.
"I want to compete at a high level and represent Tennessee," the Baylor High School senior said.
In the coming weeks, FC Alliance expects as many as 50 players to sign college scholarships.