It has been a crazy hard year for all of us with the pandemic shutting down virtually life as we know it worldwide and all sports with it. I suspect we all have felt alone and like we have lost our footing with the social distancing, financial instability, virtual classes, the loss of our sports outlets, and much much more. It is scary, it is hard, and it will continue to require social discipline and responsibility for quite some time.
Additionally we have seen the rise of the Black Lives Matter movement. I believe this movement is long overdue and hope that this year’s protests and political unrest will not be in vain. I hope it continues to stay in the public eye and gain momentum to help spark the meaningful change that is needed for justice for all and to unify our country. I cannot comprehend what it means to be Black in America, but what little I do know, see, hear, and read deeply saddens me. I believe in freedom, equality, and justice for ALL. Quite simply it is the right thing to do. I want to learn more to gain a greater perspective. I will strive to support my friends, teammates, staff, neighbors, citizens of my community, and fellow Americans on their journey to being seen, heard, loved, and valued, as we all deserve that right as human beings.
Beyond my personal views, Dynasty Goalkeeping fully supports the mission of Black Lives Matter as well as the LBGQT community. We strive as a company to be a diverse and inclusive community hiring minorities and welcoming students of all backgrounds to create more opportunities for leadership and growth. We all benefit when we embrace our differences, share experiences on and off the field together, and stay open to discussion. This is how on a micro level we can impact our community and hopefully that has a greater ripple effect beyond the soccer field.
It has been a challenging year in so many ways, but with challenge comes the opportunity for growth. My hope is that we we use this shutdown as an opportunity to pause, look inward, and reflect as individuals, so collectively as a Nation we come out of this period stronger and more United. There should be no desire to go back to what was “normal”, because there was nothing “normal” about the state of our Nation and planet. As hard and uncomfortable as it may seem, we need change. I am committed to moving forward living daily out of love, inclusion, and an open mind to our differences while working to broaden my perspectives. I am working hard to abandon patterns of fear and operating from a place of scarcity. Concepts that are sadly embedded in us all as society bombards us nonstop from every direction fueling our false and irrational fears. While this is a path that I had already embarked down, the path has only become clearer to me this year. There is no going back — only forward!
DYNASTY SUMMER 2020
It is safe to say our fifteenth summer of Dynasty was unlike any other! Sadly due to the pandemic we were unable to host our normal overnight summer camps at Saint Mary’s School in Raleigh, but that didn’t stop us from training! Instead we pivoted and crafted a new training option, the mini-camp! Throughout June and July we hosted private and semi-private mini-camps here in Chapel Hill, NC. Given the circumstance and stress in all of our lives, being back on the field amongst our clan created a welcome and much needed healthy outlet to the daily chaos all around us.
Fortunately being outdoors we were able to easily maintain our social distance and train safely within the CDC guidelines. We kept our group size between 1-4 goalkeepers which allowed for a TON of reps and even more individual feedback! Plus this new option allowed us to open up our doors to younger goalkeepers and boys who are typically not able to attend the overnight summer camps. We provided video analysis plus had individual meetings between sessions. All in all it proved to be a great alternate option for students to address their specific needs and get back up to speed after a spring with very little goalkeeper specific training.
Given the feedback we received this summer the private and semi-private mini-camps will remain an option for our students moving forward. These camps are open to male and female goalkeepers of all ages and ability. They can be arranged at anytime during the fall, winter or spring based on our mutual availability. In addition, Dynasty will likely stick to this model for the upcoming winter camp season as we will probably need to continue to social distance. The options for winter camp will continue to be assessed in the coming months, so look for updates on the website and social media in October.
Lastly, for those of you who have attended camp at Dynasty before you will know that I am into my second year as a beekeeper and I am proud to announce that Honey Bunny Apiary harvested some delicious honey this summer!!! Even our staff got into the hives this summer to help me!
I realized that I failed to list my 2019 college commitments (yikes!) so here is that belated list along with our 2020 college commits who are unfortunately embarking on their college careers amongst the pandemic. Fingers crossed that fall sports will be able to salvage their seasons in some abbreviated format spring 2021.
ANGELINA ANDERSON – University of California Berkeley
SAMANTHA ARMSTRONG – Cape Fear Community College (NJCAA)
FELICITY BAKER – Santa Clara University
JONELLE BARRON – Centre College (D3)
AUDREY CALHOUN – Lesley University (D3)
AINSLEY CUNNINGHAM – Northeastern State University (D2)
MILAN DEWKINANDAN – Grambling State University
CELIA EITZEL – Lehigh University
ELIZABETH HEDRICK – Columbus State University (D2)
HEATHER HINZ – University of South Carolina
RUTHIE JONES – Duke University
MARZIA JOSEPHSON – University of North Carolina
SARAH LAYNE – Air Force Academy
KATIE LECKONBY – Fairleigh Dickinson University
GRACE McCLELLAN – Louisiana State University
ABBY MOSTELLER – William Peace University (D3)
BRENNA MURRAY – University of North Carolina-Charlotte
DANIELLE POLLARD – Jacksonville University
LEAH RADOW – Oklahoma University
NORA SAMPSON – Furman University
STEPHANIE STULL – University of Kentucky
KENNEDY TOLSON – University of Maryland
ALEXCINA WARTSKI – Salem College (D3)
KASEY WILKINS – William Peace University (D3)
BETH AGEE – Texas State University
RAEGAN BEEDING – University of Tulsa
CAROLINE DOSS – Wofford College
LEAH FREEMAN – University of Oregon
ALEXA GOLDBERG – University of Florida
MACKENZIE HABA – University of Tennessee at Chattanooga
TIA HARRISON – Pepperdine University
TYLER McCAMEY – Princeton University
TAYLOR MONTAGUE – University of Richmond
PAIGE NURKIN – Columbia University
KAYLIN SLATTERY – University of Notre Dame
EMMA WAKEMAN – University of North Carolina – Charlotte
(I apologize to the Dynasty students who are absent from this list. If you are not listed it is because I did not know your college choice! The 2021 class won’t be featured until May of 2021 even though I know several students have already made verbal commitments.)
BRITT ECKERSTROM – July 17, 2020 – Sandy, UT
Congratulations to Dynasty alum Britt Eckerstrom of the NWSL Portland Thorns on being named to the 2020 NWSL Challenge Cup Best XI! Coming in off the bench in the fourth game of the tournament after injuries to AD Franch and Bella Bixby, Eckerstrom had one of the best (if not THE best) game of her career! Talk about nerves of steel! Eckerstrom earned Budweiser “Woman of the Match” honors as well as the Verizon “Save of the Match” for her outstanding performance as the Thorns upset the Carolina Courage 1-0 helping the Thorns advance to the semifinals of the Challenge Cup! If you missed the game this summer you can view more highlights of her phenomenal performance on YouTube. She has some amazing diving saves, was sharp with her communication, and came up with a BIG TIME breakaway smother save in the 85th minute to preserve the shutout!
MIKAYLA KRZECZOWSKI – March 2020 – Saitama, Japan
Congratulations to Dynasty alum & recent South Carolina Gamecocks graduate Mikayla Krzeczowski on signing her first pro contract to play for FC Jumonji Ventus in the Nadeshiko League 2 of Japan. League play was suspended play due to Covid19 in the spring and started back successfully in July.
Mikayla had an AMAZING collegiate career as a four year starter for the Gamecocks compiling 89 career games. She was selected All-SEC every season and SEC Goalkeeper of the Year in 2019. Her 50 career shutouts are the most ever in SEC history and third best in NCAA soccer history. And her 0.45 career goals against average is 8th overall in NCAA womens’ soccer history and best all time in SEC history. WOW! Those are some well earned honors and IMPRESSIVE stats!!! Good luck Mik in the next stage of your career. We will be cheering you on from a far!