This past weekend, the UVA women’s club soccer team opened their season at William & Mary’s double-header tournament in the sweltering heat, defeating both VCU (3-1) and William & Mary (1-0).
In the first game, first year Tara Dolan scored once and third year Claire Trevisan twice to outscore the Rams. Immediately after the victory, the Hoos shut out the Tribe when a shot by second year Izzy Franklin deflected off a W&M defender into the goal.
Last year, the team did not qualify for nationals, but fourth year captain Lindsay Wilkins has different plans for this season.
“Last year was a bit of a rebuilding period for our team,” Wilkins said, “Traditionally, our team finishes at the top of our region in regular season play and advances to nationals, so naturally this was a disappointment. That being said, I am looking forward to coming out and proving that we deserve to compete at the national level.”
A few weeks ago, the team had a large turnout come to tryouts, taking 6 girls out of 50. According to second year starting goalie Gabby Beard, the team spent several hours debating what players would make the right fit. Beard joined the team last spring and speaks highly of her experience with club soccer thus far.
“I think that club sports are the perfect balance for a full-time college student,” Beard said, “[They] allow enough time to practice and get exercise while also leaving time to socialize and stay on top of work.”
Beard values the community she has gained from being on the team much like her captain does.
“Club Soccer has been the single greatest tool in expanding my horizons at UVa. I think my temptation throughout my four years would have been to stick to my same group of friends doing the same things they did and never really taking a risk on a new group of people or organization,” said Wilkins, “Being on this team has totally shattered that norm for me by pushing me outside of my social comfort zone and challenging me to be a better player and leader.”
The team is hosting a double-header tournament this Saturday at Carr’s Hill Field at 10 am versus University of Richmond and taking on Old Dominion University at 1 pm. The games are free of cost and all are encouraged to come support the team.
Wilkins, entering her last season as a member of the women’s club soccer team, describes her team with the utmost pride and admiration.
“We are a team who is invested in getting better at soccer, representing our school well, and making friendships that will transcend our four years at UVa,” said Wilkins, “We always say that our second priority behind school is the team and I think anyone who knows us can see that in our dedication to the sport and the people.”