The Spartan Spin

Forward Shares Soccer Inspiration

Five+seniors+pose+for+a+photo+before+a+game+against+TEAM+last+season.+Seniors+left+to+right+are+Kaylea+Holt%2C+Josie+Manning%2C+Katherine+Lisak%2C+Ashley+Welsh%2C+and+Natalie+Stodola.+
Five seniors pose for a photo before a game against TEAM last season. Seniors left to right are Kaylea Holt, Josie Manning, Katherine Lisak, Ashley Welsh, and Natalie Stodola.

Five seniors pose for a photo before a game against TEAM last season. Seniors left to right are Kaylea Holt, Josie Manning, Katherine Lisak, Ashley Welsh, and Natalie Stodola.

Submitted Photo

Submitted Photo

Five seniors pose for a photo before a game against TEAM last season. Seniors left to right are Kaylea Holt, Josie Manning, Katherine Lisak, Ashley Welsh, and Natalie Stodola.

By Ruth Moder, Reporter

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Senior Ashley Welsh has been playing soccer since she was 5 years old, starting with a YMCA soccer league and practicing in the backyard with her older sister Amber Welsh.

“I used to play with my older sister Amber, and my mom was in charge of the league,” Welsh said.

Welsh has played softball, volleyball, basketball and track. She said that she enjoys them all for different reasons.

“I like volleyball because it was more of a mental challenge than a physical challenge, but I also like soccer because it mixes the physical challenge with a lot of endurance,” Welsh said. “It’s also individual and a team sport.”

Before starting middle school, Welsh retired her soccer cleats to focus on other sports such as volleyball and basketball. Her freshman year Welsh’s sister Amber Welsh asked her to tryout for the high school’s soccer team.

“I knew I wanted to do a spring sport, but I couldn’t decide between softball and soccer,” Ashley said.

Ashley continued playing her sophomore year, but this year she was on the same team as Amber. During playoffs Ashley was able to play forward with Amber against Eau Claire Memorial.

“I think it was a big moment just because she is the one that got me into playing soccer again, and when we got to work as a team in the same position, it was almost like when we were playing in our backyard as kids,” Ashley said. “It was a powerful moment.”

Welsh also said that she knew it was Amber’s last high school game, and they would not be playing together for a long time.

Since playing with the American Youth Soccer Association at 5 years old, Welsh has participated in various soccer programs, such as Gitch, Pioneer Hall and the high school teams.

“It’s a form of release and an escape from everyday drama, because I really enjoy soccer,” Welsh said. “I also get to play with my best friends and practice with them everyday.”

Welsh will be attending Michigan Tech University’s Biomedical Engineering Program and plans to participate in intramural sports.

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