Williamsburg, VA - On Friday, December 6th former Legacy player Nicolette Young will have the opportunity to play on the nation's biggest stage for women's collegiate soccer when her team, the Virginia Tech Hokies, take on the Florida State Seminoles in the semi-finals of the Women's College Cup. Nicolette, a 5'5 sophomore out of Jamestown High School, has made 21 appearances for the Hokies this season, starting seven games. Recently, we caught up with Nicolette to ask her about what it takes to play at such a high level, and how she's been able to achieve her success in soccer.
Question: What is your mind set going into this weekend's semi-final, and how has it affected your team?
Nicolette: Everything is pretty crazy right now. I mean, it hasn't really set in yet that we'll be playing in the national semi-final. I think it will once we get there, but right now we’re just taking it day by day. Our coaches have done a great job keeping everything in perspective for us, and telling us to just keep taking it one game at a time. In soccer, the best team doesn't always win, but we're doing our best to prepare for these games, and to keep it all in perspective.
Question: What or who influenced you the most as a player?
Nicolette: My coach at the Legacy, Jeff Dominguez was definitely the biggest influence on me as a player. I was a military kid growing up, and we moved around a lot, but once we ended up in Williamsburg, and I started being coached by Jeff, I really began to grow and improve as a soccer player. He did such a great job with our team, and helping us developed as players. Without him I would not be at Virginia Tech playing soccer today.
Question: Growing up, what were your goals as a young soccer player?
Nicolette: I didn't decide that I wanted to play collegiate soccer until I was about 15 or 16. When my brother started playing travel soccer, it had a big influence on me also playing at a higher level, and helped me gain the confidence to continue to play.
Question: What advice would you give a young soccer player who wants to be in your shoes some day?
Nicolette: First, play because you love the game; it's supposed to be fun! There were times when I needed a break from soccer and I took it. Jeff (Coach Dominguez) was always understanding of the fact that sometimes things can get really hectic, with academics, and things like that. After a few weeks, I'd comeback refreshed and ready to play. The other thing I would say is to keep everything in perspective. Think about the reason why you're putting in the work.
We wish Nicolette and her team the best of luck this weekend at the College Cup!