On April 19, 2017, the Puerto Rican National Women’s Soccer team came to Ancilla College to train and take a tour of the campus. They are currently on a three-game tour during which they are scheduled to play against Notre Dame, Ball State University and Saint Bona Venture in New York.
Their day started early with a rigorous training session on the Ancilla soccer fields. Ancilla College, founded in 1937, fields soccer teams for men and women as part of the National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA).
“It is so open here,” said 17-year-old team member Juliana Marquez. “It is very nice.” The team ranges in ages from 15 to 27 though a majority of the team falls in the college-age range. This is one reason the team coaches wanted to stop here.
“This environment suits them well,” said Coach Christian Castro. “The amount of one-on-one time with instructors that they get in a small school like this is exactly what they need when coming from a different culture.” Many students that come from Puerto Rico have only come to the United States mainland as a vacation with their families and don’t often get to see a college campus. “We want to let them take a peek into the culture of Ancilla because we want them to be successful. Soccer is great, but an education is more important and will take them further,” said Castro.
The Puerto Rico national football team is the national team of Puerto Rico and is controlled by the Federación Puertorriqueña de Fútbol. Puerto Rico’s national football team is a member of the Caribbean Football Union, part of CONCACAF.
Ancilla College has students from countries around the world and is proud to offer them the opportunity of a high quality education. It was a pleasure to host the team and we wish them luck in their upcoming games.