A high school senior in New Jersey is trying something different in her last year at Mater Dei Prep - she’s the kicker for the varsity football team. Claire Gaston plays goalkeeper for a soccer team outside of her school in Middletown and when an assistant football coach approached her about filling a vacancy on the team, she wasn’t sure at first.
“When I was a little girl, I thought about doing lots of things,” Claire says. “I never thought I’d play football.”
But she gave it a try, starting with working with the departing kicker last spring to hone her technique. Claire says she signed on because she “wanted to have fun my senior year and try new things.” And her hard work is paying off, she made five of six extra-point attempts at one of their recent games.
The teen’s football debut a few weeks back coincided with a viral video of Claire’s idol, US women’s soccer captain Carli Lloyd, kicking a perfect 55-yard field goal at an Eagles-Ravens joint practice. When Claire saw the pro player’s impressive video, she told her coach she could do that and she says it helped her so much seeing Lloyd do it. And her idol even gave her a shout out for her success.
“I’m happy that Claire is making an impact on the boys’ football team,” Lloyd says. “I am positive that she is inspiring all the girls, not only in her school, but in competing schools, to achieve your goals.”
Source: New York Post