A year from now, there might be another Seattle University alum playing professional soccer.
Junior sports and exercise science major Brianna Smallidge is the goalkeeper for the Redhawks and she hopes to keep playing the sport after graduation.
“Right now I am planning on entering the draft in the United States,” Smallidge said. “I am also meeting with my coaches to talk about playing abroad in Europe.”
She even got a small taste of soccer in Europe as the women’s soccer team recently took a trip to Spain and France to play some exhibition games against professional teams. The team is now playing more friendlies during this quarter as they prepare for next season and another chance at the NCAA tournament.
“I think [last year] was a great experience for our freshmen because now everyone is hungry to go back,” Smallidge said.
Smallidge has been a key factor to the women’s soccer team’s recent success as the starting goalkeeper over each of the past three seasons. This year she had a career high of 74 saves as the team made their run to the round of 32 in the NCAA tournament.
Smallidge grew up in Port Orchard, WA and started playing soccer when she was about five years old because of her older brother.
“I was kind of like that little sister that wanted to hang out with the guys,” Smallidge said. “They were always playing sports and stuff so I always wanted to compete with them and do what they were doing.”
In high school, Smallidge had to deal with several back injuries and even questioned if she really wanted to play soccer during her freshman year. Fortunately, she stuck with it and ended up at Seattle U.
“I love it here and our team is like a family and always really positive,” Smallidge said. “I wouldn’t want to play anywhere else.”
Harrison may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
Favorite Athlete: Hope Solo, Goalkeeper of the Seattle Reign FC
Favorite Movie: Bridesmaids
Favorite Pre-Game Song: Shooting Star by Bad Company
Harrison Bucher is a business management and marketing major in his second year at Seattle University. This year he joined the Spectator as a writer. He enjoys writing, movies and sports.