I initially fell in love with soccer at the age of six, while playing during every recess in first grade. As I became more and more fond of the game, I decided to join the school’s extra curricular soccer program, which at the time consisted of 26 boys and myself. I was always picked last, when dividing our group into two teams. This did not spoil my fun, nor did it discourage me. In fact, I now believe it strengthened me both physically and mentally. In second grade I decided to join a recreational team. My left footed strike and perseverance made me stand out. My passion and commitment helped me perform at my best. A year later I joined a travel team; I loved the coach and I had a great connection with the team. That year I was introduced to goalkeeping, which I gradually became more familiar and comfortable with and I eventually even started playing it regularly in games. In 2014, when I was in sixth grade, I got invited to the US Training Center as a goalkeeper which I continuously went to until our age group was too old. Having had the opportunity to train with the strongest players of Maryland and Virginia had been an amazing experience that helped me improve my individual game significantly. This was when I met my goalkeeper coach Laurie George, who I still train with at least once a week, to this day. She has helped gain confidence and ability as a goalkeeper. During this time I realized that soccer was going to play an essential and significant role in my future. In the spring of 2016, I was asked to join the Bethesda ECNL team. I esteem the intensity of the practices as well as the games and the extraordinary commitment of the coaches to help us thrive. All of these events have helped me grow and become the player that I am today.
Soccer has been an important factor in my life for the past nine years and has given me skills that I can apply on and off the field. My leadership abilities are shown in group projects and discussions. I have learned to not let mistakes and setbacks get to me, but rather to learn from these and let them motivate me to improve in the future. The needed focus as a goalkeeper also helps me concentrate in the classroom.
In conclusion, my commitment to the sport has affected my life drastically. I have gained knowledge and skills that I apply on a daily basis and am looking forward expand on these in the future.