Raider Spotlight: The Colorado connection
With fall semester just getting underway, many students are in the midst of adjusting to college life and living away from home for the first time.
For most students, home can just a few hour drive away from campus and for some even less than that. Imagine growing up and spending your whole life in your hometown, only to pack up and move over 1,000 miles away to start your collegiate career.
For senior Allie Metzler and junior Kalee Thompson, both from the Wright State women’s soccer team, that was their reality when starting their run here on campus.
Both women grew up in Colorado Springs, Colorado and were best friends all throughout high school and they played on the same club team. With Metzler being a year older, it took some recruiting and guidance from a former Raider soccer player in Lauren Patterson to draw her away from her comfort zone in Colorado.
“I grew up with her (Lauren Patterson) and that’s how I actually found out about Wright State. (WSU head coach) Pat (Ferguson) and I started e-mailing back and forth about it so that’s how I really got into it,” Metzler said.
As much as Patterson impacted Metzler’s decision to play for Wright State, it was her eagerness and ambition to try something new that landed her in Ohio.
“I didn’t necessarily want to leave Colorado,” said Metzler. “I will always consider it my home, I love it and I want to go back there. But I was open to doing something different. It’s four years to try something new and if you don’t like it then you can always go back.”
Once Patterson graduated, it put Metzler in a leadership role, which allowed to her to be able to draw Thompson to Wright State, just as Patterson had done for her.
“I drew her here a lot. We talked about it all the time and I told her to get in touch with Pat (Ferguson). I told her it’s an awesome school and that I loved it here,” said Metzler.
Although Thompson’s decision to come to Wright State was more based on soccer than any other factor, having Metzler, her long time best friend, definitely made the transition a lot easier.
“My decision to come to Wright State was really based on soccer the most, but moving clear across the country and having your best friend there was a definite plus,” Thompson said. “We have been playing together since our freshmen year in high school. I can’t even remember not playing with her now because we have gone through so much.”
Having both playing together for so long, Thompson and Metzler feel like their chemistry is just as strong on the field as off the field.
“I know how she plays, she knows how I play,” Thompson said. “She knows I am going to make that run and I know she’s going to play that ball so it’s kind of like an advantage over other people.”
The way in which both of the ladies’ stories are similar in how they both were drawn to the university is a trend that coach Ferguson believes makes this team so strong.
“Really Allie came and got in touch with us and we developed a relationship because of Lauren, and then we developed a relationship with Kalee because of Allie,” Ferguson said. “I think it says a lot about the university because those kids have all came through and had a positive experience and really that’s our best recruiting tool.”