Savannah Spirit hopes to fill gap in development of women’s soccer players

Sports

“The energy here, the spirit, that’s what we’re about.”

Come to a Savannah Spirit practice and you’ll see a mix of generations; pre-teens and twenty-somethings side by side, pushing each other to another level. 

“You know, it’s just so cool to see the older girls mentoring and just, there’s someone to look up to,” said Spirit SC player Kayla Jackson.

The Spirit made their competitive debut this past summer, but their winter training is why a lot of the girls really joined the club.

“I’d get to train with college students and high school students and kids younger than me,” said Callah Dando. “I thought it would be a really good experience for me.”

Girls soccer players around the country face a problem: a lack of quality, accessible programs that operate between the youth level and the college ranks. 

It’s a problem that the Spirit hopes to solve. 

“On this team, they really help you progress and let you know what real soccer is like,” said Avril Diaz.

For players like Diaz, a program like the Spirit makes a big difference when it comes to playing the beautiful game in college. 

“In the matter of about a month and a half, I was actually noticed by a college because they saw me play here,” Diaz said. “I am verbally committed with them.”

The other girls are hoping to follow in Diaz’s footsteps, using the Spirit as a link between where they are and where they want to be. 

“All the hard work I’ve put in, I want to go somewhere with it,” Jackson said. “I want it to pay for college. It’s something I love, and I don’t want to stop playing.” 

The Spirit are hoping to release their schedule sometime in the next few months.

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