U.S. Soccer recently held a U-15 Youth National Team camp in Chula Vista, CA, the first under new head coach Katie Schoepfer. Among the invited players were several Girls Academy players called in for their first experience with the U.S. Soccer Youth National Team system. GA players attending the 8-day camp included:
- Kimmi Ascanio (Florida United)
- Sofia Atehortua (New York Soccer Club)
- Leilani Cortez-Ramirez (FC Bay Area Surf)
- Julianna Harris (Florida United)
- Chelsea Leal (STA)
- Saide Leal-Schuman (Lamorinda)
- Mya Townes (TSJ FC Virginia)
- Molly Vapensky (Chicago FC United)
We asked one of the players, Mya Townes, to reflect on her experience. Here’s what she had to say!
GET TO KNOW MYA TOWNES:
Club Team: TSJ FC Virginia
Position: Forward, wing
Favorite Team: Washington Spirit
Favorite Player: Christen Press
Warm-up Song: Public Service Announcement – Jay-Z
I recently had the honor of being selected to attend the U-15 Youth National Team training camp and I couldn’t be more excited. It’s amazing to be given the opportunity to start the process for representing my country at such a young age. Wearing the crest was an incredible feeling for me to see what it’s like behind the scenes of U.S. Soccer. Meeting great players from all over the country made me want to work even harder to become the best player and teammate I can be.
I had a great time at the camp. We were treated like professionals the entire week. The food and fields were top-notch at all times. The coaches and staff were nice and helpful, always looking to help us improve on and off the field. I learned so much about the game and met so many new friends during my stay in Chula Vista that I will remember forever.
Playing in the Girls Academy allows me to play against some tough competition whenever I step on the field, including at the YNT camp. The league has helped me connect with top coaches and a diverse group of soccer players. The year-round schedule allows me to always be on the ball and stay on top of my game.
At the camp I learned new tactics and areas to focus on that can help my whole team. I also think I’m more aware of how high-level players present themselves and prepare for competition and I’m hoping to become that kind of player not only for myself but for my team and club. Overall, I had a tremendous experience and I hope to earn future opportunities with U.S. Soccer to represent my club and my country.
Photos courtesy of Mya Townes and Molly Vapensky.