Shelby Auterhoff is embracing her new role as a team leader with the Lipscomb University Lady Bisons in Nashville, Tennessee.
The Northern Collegiate grad just completed her second season at the private Christian university on a soccer scholarship.
Earlier this month, she was named to the Atlantic Sun Conference All-Tournament Team, despite her side losing in the waning minutes of the second overtime in the conference semi-finals to Georgia’s Kennesaw State University.
“We had probably the best season ever of our soccer program,” she said. “We broke our record for the most wins … and we were the number two seed in the conference tournament,” said Auterhoff, who was recruited after being seen at a showcase tournament in Toronto while playing for a London club team.
The Lady Bisons finished with a 10-7-2 record while playing one of its toughest schedules ever, including road games in Arizona, Florida and South Carolina.
The centre midfielder started in 16 of 19 games, increasing her playing time by 50% from her freshman season.
“By the end of the season, I become one of the players that the team depended on,” she commented.
She is the only Canadian on the team, and like many Canucks who go to the U.S. on sports scholarships, the 19-year-old found the biggest difference is the level of competition.
“In high school, (soccer) was more like a fun thing to do,” she said.
“But here it’s more like a job. We train every day, we take time off school for games and we travel a lot further.”