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Jennifer Stoltenberg

Pro Soccer Player

By:  Maureen "Mo" Fitzgerald          

   

 

What went through your mind when you heard your name get drafted?

I remember sitting in my living room with my roommates getting ready for the second round to start. I remember thinking to myself that I think it will be Lauren Barnes or Sophie Schmidt from Portland who was going to go next. They started the 2nd round and all of a sudden my name is called and goes up on the screen and I was literally speechless. Like I started shaking and I just thought this was a huge dream and joke all at the same time. I honestly never thought that I was going to be drafted let alone in the 2nd round. I was shocked beyond belief.

 

What are you looking forward to most about playing professionally?

I am looking forward to being able to play with the best players around the country. Also I can’t wait to grow as a soccer player at the professional level.

 

What would you be doing if you weren't playing soccer?

If I weren’t playing soccer I would be finishing school and I would be starting to try and plan for the real world. So start looking for a job, planning life out, etc.

 

Who inspires you/who do you look up to?

I'd say my biggest inspiration is my grandpa Bobby. At 77, he still runs 8 miles a day and works out like crazy. He has always pushed me to be my best and always expected nothing less of that. He has high expectations and is tough as nails but I never wanted to let him down. He has always wanted one of his family members to go pro, and I think hearing him cry the day I called and told him was one of my most proud moments.

 

Did you ever have a moment when you doubted your abilities?

I think as a player I have doubted my abilities at times. For instance, I truly didn't think I was going to get drafted because I didn't feel like I was good enough to be considered in the 24 player draft. Growing up my resume wasn't the best either. I never played for the national team or even the regional teams. I didn't start playing at the highest level of club until my sophomore year. I never thought college was a choice for me, and if it was definitely not division 1 soccer. I think I have struggled with confidence especially growing up and my first year in college. My freshman year of college was the time when I doubted my abilities most. I felt like I shouldn't even be playing soccer let alone be getting the opportunity to play in games. It showed in my play a lot.

 

What is the biggest lesson you have learned from playing sports?

If you want something bad enough and it truly is a dream for you, then doing that to the best of your ability and working as hard as you can really will pay off in the end. Hard work and dedication will pay off in the end, if you believe in something