(Via Virginia Tech) – Virginia Tech freshman goalkeeper Mandy McGlynn impressed April Heinrichs and the U.S. Soccer coaching staff in 2016 as part of a 10-day tournament in Northern Ireland for the U-18 Women’s National Team. The Jacksonville, Fla., native is now poised to participate in the U-19 WNT domestic camp in Sunrise, Fla., beginning January 28, 2017.
That camp will culminate with an exhibition game at the University of Central Florida.
While the complete roster for that camp has yet to be finalized, McGlynn is no stranger to the coaches from Team U.S.A. She enjoyed a solid showing in eight-day camp with the U.S. U-18 WNT from Dec. 10-17 at the U.S. Soccer National Training Center in Carson, Calif., where she was one of three goalkeepers and one of only 14 collegiate players on the 26-woman roster for U.S. Soccer Women’s Development Coach Jitka Klimkova.
There’s no question that McGlynn is excited to showcase her skills once again against the top players in the nation, this time in her home state of Florida.
“I’m really looking forward to it,” she said. “I’m hoping these become more routine, and it kind of feels like it is. I don’t want to jinx myself, but I like seeing that invitation (from the U.S. WNT) every couple of months.”
Based on the feedback that Tech head women’s soccer coach Chugger Adair has received, McGlynn could expect more such invites if she continues to perform well.
“It’s a testament to the work that Mandy’s put in that she’s gotten this opportunity,” Adair indicated. “The National Team coaching staff really thought she did a good job during the camp she went to during the season. It’s been great to have her on the field and we hope she gets called back into (another) camp.”
The goal for this age group is to ultimately qualify for the next U-20 Women’s World Cup which will be held in France.
“I’d love to be a part of that,” McGlynn grinned. “For me and my age and where I’m at in my abilities, that’s the biggest thing for me. To be called into that would be amazing.”
While there’s no question that McGlynn possesses tremendous talent and drive, Adair also feels her experience at Virginia Tech has played dividends, particularly given the level of competition in the ACC.
“Playing in this conference, getting the looks, getting the challenges you’re going to face daily in the ACC has been huge for her,” he said. “I think the coaches on the National Team staff respect that. They’ve seen the work that she’s done with us. They’ve seen the work that she’s done on the field for them in practice. They’ve seen her put the time in and it’s great that she gets the opportunity to represent our country.”
Despite missing three of Tech’s last four matches in 2016 due to her junket to Europe, she still played 1,453 minutes for the Hokies in 2016, registering 58 saves and a .753 save percentage in 16 starts.
That brief taste of international competition and travel definitely has McGlynn hungry for more.
“It was awesome. It was a lot of good training, and it was beautiful to be there,” she said of the trip to Northern Ireland. “The country was amazing. We did a lot of sightseeing. We went to see the Titanic museum [Titanic Belfast], so it was all just really cool. Always being with that group of girls is awesome. I got to play against Northern Ireland, which was fun. We did get a shutout, so that was good. It was just an amazing experience. It was my first international camp, and I think I did well.
“I really want to further my national team career as long as I can,” McGlynn concluded. “I’m trying to be on the full women’s national team – that’s my ultimate goal. Hopefully, that starts sooner than later because I only have three more age groups to go. I hope to play professionally at some point, too. Soccer is my love, so I’ll just take it as long as I can until I can’t take it anymore.”