Wells to Take Part in United States U-23 Training Camp Next Week
April 19, 2011
WASHINGTON - The second semester of the 2010-11 academic year has been a hectic one for Georgetown University junior women's soccer player Ingrid Wells (Upper Montclair, N.J./Montclair). And it continues to be just that for her this weekend.
Wells leaves on Wednesday to head to her home in New Jersey. She will spend a few days there, but leaves on Easter Sunday for California, where she will again train with the United States Under-23 National Team. On April 27, the U-23s will scrimmage against the U.S. U-20 Women's National Team that is holding a concurrent training camp. The team will also face women's club Ajax of Los Angeles (April 29) and WPSL side Orange County Waves (April 30).
"I am definitely excited for camp and getting to train with the U23 players and coaches," Wells said. "Anyone who knows me, knows I live for this kind of stuff. I love getting to play soccer at a high level, twice a day for a week in California and hanging out/playing with my friends that I do not get to see very often. I am always thankful for these opportunities."
The opportunities are becoming pretty frequent for Wells, though not without a challenge. This is the third trip for her this semester with the U-23 team and the fourth soccer-only trip. In January, at the start of the semester, she was in California for the U-23 team's first training session. In mid-March she went with the team to Span, where they won the Four Nations Tournament. Two days after her return to the United States, Wells left with her Georgetown team for Brazil, where the team spent its spring break, playing soccer and learning about the culture.
"Sometimes it's hard living out of a suitcase so to speak but I love to travel," Wells said. "I can't complain about this lifestyle, it's a privilege that I do not take for granted.
"It's nice in this case that I am getting the chance to go home for a few days and then to California because I feel like I seriously never get the chance to just be at home and do nothing. I also don't see my family that often and they are an important part of my life."
One of the biggest challenges for Wells, an anthropology major who minors in environmental studies, has been the balance of school work and soccer. Even with all of her travel, she has not missed much class time, but she has made sure to keep up.
"It's obviously a challenge to manage my school work and my athletic commitments, but both hold great value in my life," Wells said. "I just try to manage my time to the best of my ability so I can be the best I can be in both school and in soccer. My professors have also been really great this semester in working with me and the opportunities that have presented themselves."
When Wells arrives at the Home Depot Center in Los Angeles for the training - which runs from April 24 to May 1 - she will be one of 24 collegiate players in the camp. The start of the season for Women's Professional Soccer changed the roster for this camp. In previous sessions, Wells had been one of approximately 13 college players on the roster. Wells is one of several players on roster called up by head coach Bill Irwin who has previous playing experience with one of the national teams, as she was a member of the U.S. team that won the 2008 FIFA U-20 Women's World Cup in Chile.
"It will be a good experience for me to play against some new players from other top college teams and continue to challenge myself," Wells said. "I have made some of the best friends I have through this program. While I will be meeting up with some old friends, there will also be a lot of new faces and I am excited to compete with these girls. Playing with a new group of girls also helps keep me fresh and challenges me as a player, and that's one of the things I love about getting to play with this team."
This will be the sixth time that Wells has had a chance to train with the U-23 squad since she was selected to it last summer, but it is an experience that does not grow old.
"I have always tried to make the most out of these opportunities playing with national teams and the competitive environment that comes with it," she said. "I am extremely excited for next week and my goal, as it is for every camp, is to be a better player and learn things to improve my game at the end of the week."
Wells earned First Team All-America honors after helping lead Georgetown to its best season in program history, reaching the Elite Eight of the NCAA Tournament and finishing the 2010 campaign with a 15-7-2 overall record. The BIG EAST Conference Midfielder of the Year and a three-time All-BIG EAST First Team selection, Wells tied for the team lead in scoring with 28 points, setting a school single-season record for points in a season. Wells scored nine goals and recorded a team-high 10 assists. She finished tied for fifth in the BIG EAST in points (28, 1.17 per game), tied for third in assists (10, 0.42 per game) and tied for seventh in goals (9, 0.38). Nationally, Wells finished 25th in the country in total assists.