Brooke Standard is getting ready to play with some of the best soccer players in the nation this weekend as a new member of the Carolina Elite Soccer Academy’s Elite Clubs National League team in Greenville, S.C.
The nationally ranked women’s team starts its season Saturday.
Standard, a standout at First Presbyterian Christian Academy, already verbally committed to Armstrong Atlantic State University. The Lady Highlander senior said the AASU coaching staff suggested she look into trying out for the academy team in order to improve her skills.
The ECNL is recognized as the most productive player-development arena for aspiring female soccer players. CESA competes within the ECNL Southeast Conference.
Standard tried out in the spring and was selected for their 18-and-under team by coach and CESA co-executive director Andrew Hyslop.
“This is the top women’s league in the country,” Hyslop said. “Last summer, they (the 17-and-under team) qualified for the national championship and were one of the top 32 teams in the country.”
“I was excited when the coach offered me to join the team after the first day of tryouts,” Standard said.
“Brooke is a pretty good athlete,” Hyslop said. “She is very consistent … she will play the central defender for us … she is good in the air and a good tackler … and those are the attributes we were looking for.”
During a recent preseason game in Greensboro, Standard played the entire game.
“I was excited that coach Hyslop let me start since I was one of the new players, and to play the whole match was great,” Standard said. “Since it was my first match, I was a little nervous, but my teammates and the coach were great and just told me to settle down, have fun and play my game.”
Greenville CESA won, 2-0.
Hyslop said the first regular-season game is this weekend and he thinks Standard will have a big role.
“We will be looking for her to make an impact immediately,” Hyslop said.
“This is a great opportunity for me and I am grateful to CESA, coach Hyslop and my new teammates, who have been very welcoming,” Standard said.
She also continues to train and play with the Savannah United club.