Tallahassee, FL---It's not always easy for talented high school athletes to move to college athletics and then have to sit out a year taking a redshirt. Many times though that move pays off.
Arnold alum Kirsten Crowley is a good example of that. Kirsten, who caught our attention as a high school phenom, seems to be thriving now at Florida State after sitting out a year.
After graduating Arnold in the spring of 2012, Crowley, who established pretty much all of her school's soccer records, was talked into sitting a year by FSU coach Mark Krikorian. She admits it wasn't an easy decision to accept, but...
"It ended up being the best thing that could have happened because
sitting out and making it less competitive and making it more about learning was the best thing for me and the other redshirts."
And that's because Crowley didn't just "sit around" last season, she became a serious student of the game.
"Just watching the process" Crowley says "of the long season and making the Final 4 and just taking it all in and learning as much as we could was really beneficial and I think it helped us all focus on this year and get us to really realize what our role was on the team. Sometimes it was like, oh the rest of the team is doing this. But it was all about being disciplined and being patient and learning, and realizing this is what we need to be doing right now at this time."
And Kirsten's time has begun at Florida State. She's played in all 6 matches so far, 5 wins and a tie.
"It's a whole different feel. I knew when I went in, I knew just do your part. And don't do anything that is too much or too little. Just do what you've been practicing. You've been here for a year, just be composed. I think my role on the team changed. I think I'm realizing what my purpose is and what I'm supposed to be doing, and I'm getting used to everything and it's really fun."
And Crowley really making her mark with this game winning goal earlier this month against Central Florida.
"You know I definitely didn't think it was gonna be me." Kirsten says. "And then when it happened I was like ooh Gosh. And then the team just came around me and it was so loud, everyone was screaming. And I was still in shock, I didn't know what had just happened. So as soon as that wore off I was just really happy."
Kirsten and her teammates now gearing up for a road trip for games at Wake Thursday Duke Sunday.