GB athlete goes international

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GB athlete goes international

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  Four years ago, sophomore Emily Talmi joined the Olympic Development Program: a youth soccer organization that helps provide the national team with a talented pool of players from which to make selections and that offered Talmi with an opportunity to compete internationally.

  ODP offers open tryouts to players for the selection of its state team.

  “Once you make it on that team, you go to regional camp where the coaches select 18 people, and from those 18, they select a traveling team,” Talmi said.

  Talmi represents Region IV, consisting of players from the West Coast, Alaska, Hawaii, and as far inland as Colorado and Idaho.

  As a part of ‘00 ODP Regional Team, Talmi’s team traveled to Costa Rica in late February to play four games against Costa Rican women’s professional teams.

  “I was very happy for her; it’s a once in a lifetime opportunity, so she had to go,” said Talmi’s mother, Anne, who has supported Emily in all of her soccer endeavors.

Compared to the teams Talmi is accustomed to playing in the U.S., “the competition was so different: they were strong, fast, and very dirty,” (Emily) Talmi said.

  This trip marks the furthest distance Talmi has traveled with a passport.

  “When I first got there, I felt super jet lagged, so I was afraid of how my performance would be hindered by that,” said Talmi.  “First game, I was pretty consistent, and I got my goal in the second game so that was, ya know, my big thing.”  

  Talmi performed consistently in the third and fourth games where fatigue is most prevalent. The team finished with 2 wins, 1 tie, and 1 loss.

  In her free time, Talmi and the team went ziplining, received a tour of major Costa Rican cities, and helped children at an orphanage.

  “Unfortunately, this  was a once in a lifetime event,” said Talmi. “A lot of my friends on that team are stopping ODP, so I think this is my last year on ODP.”

  Talmi has also been on the GBHS women’s varsity soccer team since her freshman year, helping the team win a league championship last season.

  “She hit the field as a very talented defender who can also attack, works hard all game, is a great teammate on the field and off the field,” said head coach Mark Broers who finds it hard to believe Emily has only been with the team for two years.

  Broers said Talmi is a huge contributor to the success of the team, earning her the respect of all other coaches in the league and causing their teams to avoid playing the ball on her side of the field.

  “If she continues to progress the way she has, she could be a league MVP candidate,” Broers said.

  Many talented soccer players in this area tend to forego their final high school soccer seasons to pursue other interests or to take advantage of other opportunities. Broers said Talmi could be a team captain if she stays through graduation.

  Anne Talmi has watched her daughter mature as a soccer player, becoming more confident and independent. Looking toward the future, Anne Talmi hopes to see Emily accomplish her goals of playing collegiately and internationally.

  Talmi plans on attending Cal Poly San Luis Obispo in the fall of 2019 to play soccer as she is an excellent student-athlete.

  In addition to her successful and ongoing soccer career, Talmi participates in women’s leadership groups and is involved in community service.

 

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