Tiffany McCarty

Florida State's Tiffany McCarty, who grew up in Laurel, led the Seminoles to the top of the Atlantic Coast Conference.this season as they prepare to play in the NCAA tournament. (Photo courtesy of Larry Novey / August 31, 2012)

Tiffany McCarty, who grew up in Laurel, has played soccer in Spain, Germany, Argentina and Guatemala as a member of the U.S. national program during the past few years.

But the world has also come to know McCarty during a standout career at Division I Florida State University.

This season the Seminoles' roster includes two players each from France and Iceland and one from Germany, England, Japan and Australia.

"I think it is a big cultural experience," said redshirt senior forward McCarty, an All-American at Florida State who was a standout at St. John's in Washington, D.C.

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"A lot of us have learned a few words of different languages. It does give you a different perspective."

The 5-foot-4 McCarty, who attended Eisenhower Middle School, has been a roommate on road trips with one of her French teammates.

So it is hard to mesh different styles of play?

"It just adds a different element to the team. I would not say it is difficult," she said. "We have some Japanese flavor, some French flavor."

Those flavors have added up to a winning recipe this season for Florida State, which has been ranked No. 1 in the country for much of the campaign.

The Seminoles were the No. 1 seed for the Atlantic Coast Conference tournament (Maryland was No. 2) and defeated Boston College, 4-1.

McCarty had two goals in the win over the Eagles.

The semifinals and finals of the ACC tourney will be held Nov. 2 and 4 in Cary, N.C.

Florida State was 15-2 in regular-season games.

"We were fortunate to get the No. 1 seed," said McCarty, who had the game-winning goal when Florida State won at Maryland, 1-0, in late October. "It is one and done (in the tourney). We have to prepare for every team."

"Every team that is or was No. 1 at some point, everyone wants to knock you off," she added.

And that happened Oct. 25 as the Seminoles ended regular-season play with a 1-0 loss at ACC rival Miami in a night game.

"We have to forget about it and move on," she said. "We know what kind of team we are and what kind of team we bring to the table."

McCarty, whose team is a lock for the NCAA tourney later in November, is winding down a stellar career at Florida State.

She was the ACC Freshman of the Year in 2008, the ACC Offensive Player of the Year in 2009 and was a semifinalist for the MAC Hermann Trophy in 2009 and 2011 in honor of the best player in the country.

She scored 11 goals as a freshman in 2008, 17 as a sophomore in 2009 and then scored 18 goals with six assists last year after she missed the 2010 season due to health reasons.