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Copa In College: December 2023

Emma D’Alesandro

College Name: The College Of William and Mary

Copa Team Name : UWS | G03 Black.

Position: Center Back

Advice to current players wanting to play college soccer:

 I’d say my biggest piece of advice for players that want to take the next step and play in college is email email email. You are not pestering the coaches. They get so many emails a day from many people, make sure yours gets seen by following up with schedules for games and tournaments, showing interest in their school, or even after an ID camp you may have attended. Make sure you are writing them, address the correct person with the school, and not just copying and pasting each email. Add some personality because college coaches love to see your personality shine through! But keep the email concise, they also don’t have a lot of time. As much as ID camps are great to show interest and see the coaches and school in person, also make sure to have them come out and see you play with your team. What better way to showcase yourself as a player than with your own team who will make you look good and you’re comfortable with. 

On the physical side. Make sure you practice and listen to your coaches. They are here to help you and not hurt you. Take their advice and implement it at practice. It’s okay if it’s out of your comfort zone and something new, that’s what practice is for. However, practicing two times a week is not sufficient. Make sure you are touching the ball or practicing in some sort of way once a day.  Even if it’s a quick workout or 10-15 reps of something you need to work on, practicing as much as possible will definitely benefit you! 

What did you learn at FC Copa that has helped you in college:

 Personally, being aggressive and assertive. Although I’ve learned a lot and developed as a person and player at Copa, one thing Coach Roberto and Coach Lori pounded into my head was that the minute I had to step on the field as a center back, I had to own that field, assert myself, and be aggressive. Speed of play and physicality are two of the biggest changes from club to college soccer. So coming in as freshman, and even now as a junior, Coach Roberto and Coach Lori’s advice of making sure I bring a presence onto the field, especially as a center back, has helped me so much in my collegiate play. 

Baker Diaz

College Name: St. Lawrence University

Copa Team Name : USL Academy | B05 Brooklyn.

Position: Center Back

Advice to current players wanting to play college soccer:

At FC Copa Academy, I gained valuable insights that have proven instrumental in my college soccer journey. The experience instilled in me the importance of playing with confidence and trusting in my abilities on the field. Moreover, the academy emphasized the significance of maintaining an open-minded approach, always ready to absorb new knowledge and relentlessly strive for improvement. These principles have been my guiding light throughout my freshman season, enabling me to contribute consistently.

What did you learn at FC Copa that has helped you in college:

Reflecting on my time at FC Copa Academy, one invaluable lesson that has significantly influenced my college soccer journey is the recognition that there is perpetual room for improvement. Embracing the philosophy that every mistake is an opportunity to learn has been a cornerstone of my approach on the field. The academy's emphasis on turning setbacks into learning experiences has not only shaped my resilience but has also played a pivotal role in my ability to navigate the challenges of my freshman season.

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