NWSL’s Caroline Stanley Blog Takeover for #ECNLPHX

Video Message from Caroline Stanley | November 8, 2017 | 2 Days from #ECNLPHX

Caroline Stanley’s ECNL Story | November 6, 2017 | 5 Days from #ECNLPHX

Hi everyone! We are so close to the #ECNLPHX event! I am so excited to be pairing up with ECNL at #ECNLPHX to help grow the ECNL alum family! I will be at the event all weekend registering the future ECNL alums! Being an ECNL alum is a great way to stay connected and grow the relationships you make through ECNL.

I started playing ECNL my senior year of high school with KCFC Intensity out of Kansas City, Kansas. My teammates were my sisters and best friends. We had actually just undergone a really tough time at the ECNL regional event, but because of our record all year, we still qualified for ECNL Nationals. Most girls on my team were preparing for college ball and we had to make a decision if we would, in fact go to Colorado and play in the tournament. The bulk of us decided that we wanted to. Thirteen of us to be exact.

So our parents piled us in one big stretch van and shipped us off with just our team manager and coach. My teammate Caroline’s father was one of our biggest supporters, and had just tragically passed away. We had so much to play for. We came together as a team and played our hearts out in the semi-final against our regional rivals. We beat them in a shootout and we were all absolutely shocked and ecstatic. I remember looking at the sidelines and seeing the younger teams of both clubs watching and cheering. I remember my coach telling me, “just one PK save and we’ll win.” I saved three.

In the finals we were to face one of the best teams in the country. Our parents all scrambled in Kansas City to pack up and drive to Colorado to watch this historic event. We played Bethesda SC and donned our KG bracelets, for Caroline’s dad Kevin Gray. We shocked everyone by beating them 6-1 that next day. We were all crying and hugging as a rainbow formed above our field. No joke. I’ll absolutely never forget the memories that ECNL gave me and my teammates. Soccer is so much more than just a sport, it creates families and brings people together through trials and triumphs. 

I found a video from the ECNL National Championship where we won. It is below. You can find me at the 3:35 mark!

This is why I am so passionate about ECNL, youth soccer, and creating a family for former player to stay connected to the league and each other. I have decided to pair up with ECNL because my losses became lessons I can share with others. I will be at the ECNL Alum tent all weekend in Phoenix signing you girls up for our alumni database. Of course, there’s free swag involved, which I know everyone loves! I’ll be handing out some goodies and prizes as well.

I am also an open book, and can’t wait to have real honest conversation about my own playing career, as well as what you can expect in the future. I will also be conducting a Facebook Live event and talking all things recruiting, college athletics, and what it’s like going through so many different ups and downs on and off the field. So come prepared with questions! I cannot wait to see you all there!

Caroline Stanley Introduction | November 2, 2017 | 1 Week from #ECNLPHX

Photo Credit: The Young and Brave Foundation

Hi everyone! My name is Caroline Stanley and I am a professional goalkeeper in the National Women’s Soccer League. I played collegiately at the University of Missouri shortly before transferring to the University of Southern California. I was a starter my entire time at USC, and we were increasingly better each year until my senior season we finally made the NCAA Tournament. We had a heartbreaking loss in a shootout, but it was a memorable experience. I was then picked up in the NWSL Discovery draft by the Seattle Reign FC.

For those of you who may not be familiar with the league, it is the only women’s professional league in our country! Many of you have heard of great United States players like Alex Morgan, Becky Sauerbrunn, Megan Rapinoe, all of which play in this league! This league is extremely competitive. My rookie year at Seattle I backed up Hope Solo and started in one game, which we won. It was the best year, and I was able to learn so much from Hope and the coaches. I started the next year for Sky Blue FC out of New Jersey and this last year I played down in Florida with the Orlando Pride! I am now in off-season and fill up most of my time traveling, coaching and doing freelance writing and broadcasting!

Photo Credit: The Daily Trojan

I spend most of my time in the off-season between Kansas City and Oklahoma City. I grew up in Kansas City, Missouri but my family currently lives in Oklahoma. I am a total sports junkie, and love spending my time watching football, baseball, and basketball. I would love to stay in the business in different capacities while I’m still playing. I also enjoy design! I have always been total right brain dominant and loved digital marketing and design as well as interior design.

I am so excited to be pairing up with ECNL for #ECNLPHX to help grow the ECNL alum family! I will be at the event all weekend registering you future ECNL Alums! I am also an open book, and can’t wait to have real honest conversation about my own playing career, as well as what you can expect in the future. Come visit me at the ECNL Alum tent at #ECNLPHX to register as an alum, get your alum shirt/sticker & chance to win other prizes!! You can also ask me any questions about moving on to play at the next level!