From many, there will be one. And while there’s still no guarantee contending athletes will win their own state at this point in the season, a number of elite performers are making a case for Gatorade National Girls Soccer Player of the Year consideration. Here’s the scoop on the latest top candidate.
Senior midfielder/forward, Ocean Township (Oakhurst, N.J.)
Greatness Present: While her Ocean Township teammates are digging out of a colossal snowstorm, Taylor Racioppi is enjoying the sun these days in Sanford, Fla. Well, maybe not enjoying.
One of 28 call-ups invited to participate in a U.S. Soccer Under-20 Women’s National Team training camp from Oct. 24-31, Racioppi rejoined the group this week in Florida, where they’re preparing for their quest to qualify for the 2016 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup.
Racioppi’s latest getaway on behalf of U.S. Soccer comes on the heels of a standout senior season with the Spartans. The 5-foot-5 midfielder and forward scored 20 goals and passed for five assists this past fall, leading Ocean Township to a 14-7 record and the Central Jersey, Group 3 tournament semifinals.
Greatness Past: Racioppi was the second-youngest member of the national team at the FIFA Under-20 Women’s World Cup in Canada this past August. She appeared in a pair of matches for the U.S., which lost to North Korea in a quarterfinals shootout.
Greatness Future: Ranked as the No. 2 recruit in the Class of 2015 by TopDrawerSoccer.com, Racioppi is headed to Duke in the fall.
Make no mistake: The Gatorade State Girls Soccer Player of the Year races aren’t over, and the National POY race is now heating up. Time remains for one standout student-athlete among thousands to rise to the top of our list. Check back for daily updates on the top contenders making their case.