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Jones' makes lasting impression

By Kate Longworth
Arizona Daily Wildcat
May 12, 1999
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1998 record: 3-12-2 overall, 0-8-1 Pacific 10 Conference

When senior Nikki Jones retired her No. 4 UA soccer jersey, she took a number of school records with her.

She played in a record 69 games, and she started all but three, making her the all-time leader for games started. Jones also led UA in shots (165), goals (25) and total points (64).

"There's going to be a gap up front," head coach Lisa Fraser said. "Nikki has an ability to work so hard, who will fill that role for us?"

This season Jones tied the season record for assists with Sara Field at six. Jones is also UA's all-time assist leader, breaking the record earlier this season.

"Nikki has an extremely high work rate," Fraser said. "She has caused problems for other teams and created invaluable opportunities for us."

After the spring season, the team found some players to step up to the position, but Jones left some pretty big cleats to fill, as her name is inscribed throughout the UA record book.

"I'm probably going to leave with a lot of regrets," she said. "I had a great time, I just wish I would have done more (and) won more."

The Wildcats struggled last fall, and though they matched or outshot their opponents in over half their games, they couldn't get the ball into the back of the net.

"The season has been disappointing," Jones said. "Part of me is ready for it to be over. But I'm sure I'll miss it. I'll miss playing a lot.

"It's time to spend my time doing other things in life now."