Starr’s Mill High School alum Kelley O’Hara must be riding high after the United States Women’s National Team won the World Cup on Sunday. Her old school sure is enjoying some extra attention. Coach John Bowen and several of his players took a break from offseason training to film a segment for 11alive Tuesday afternoon.
There was plenty to say about the rising popularity of women’s soccer, and, of course, a focus on the pride the all feel in seeing on of their own shine on the world stage.
It’s the continuation of a great year for the Starr’s Mill Lady Panthers soccer program. This spring, they won a state championship to get themselves back on top of AAAAA. Now, they have a favorite player on a World Cup champ.
“It’s been a good year all around,” said Bowen, adding that the new titles will require a change to their uniforms, but a welcome one as both teams depict their championship on their kits. “We kind of joked about it earlier. We’ve ruined our jerseys by winning our sixth title, and they ruined their jerseys by winning their third.”
The time is now to celebrate because it won’t be too long before it’s time to get back to work. Both squads have set the bar high for themselves. After ending title droughts they’ll be hungry for more.
“We’ve got to put this year behind us, but at least we know what’s possible now,” said Bowen. “We were kind of like the women’s national team where everyone began to wonder after 16 years. We were never that far away either. It just took this group to get us over the hump, and I’m glad Kelley was part of it.”