Patterson Mill sophomore Linnea Gonzales was one of 18 field hockey players named Monday to represent the United States as a member of the U.S. Under-17 Junior National Squad this spring.
The announcement was made by USA Field Hockey in Colorado Springs, Co.
Gonzales, who plays for H2O, a Harford Hockey Organization Field Hockey Club Team coached by C. Milton Wright head coach Janice Rhodes, is one of the most talented field hockey players of her age in the nation.
"This has been something I've been wanting for a while so I'm really excited and happy I get the opportunity," Gonzales said Wednesday night from Florida.
Gonzales and her H2O team are in Orlando, Florida for the Disney Field Hockey Showcase, the ultimate place for top field hockey clubs to be seen by hundreds of college coaches looking for great field hockey talent.
The selection process for the U-17 national team began last summer at the 2012 National Futures Championship and Futures Elite Championship. In all, 102 athletes were selected from both events to attend the Junior National Camp, presented by Longstreth, and held at the University of Massachusetts, July 9-12. At the camp, athletes received daily tactical sessions from some of the top field hockey coaches in the country, followed by test matches in the evening.
From the Junior National Camp, a select number of athletes were invited to attend a winter training camp at the Olympic Training Center in Chula Vista, California. Following the winter training camp, eighteen under-17 athletes were selected to represent the U.S. Junior National Squad on an international tour this spring.
"It has been a pleasure coaching Linnea in high school and club play," Patterson Mill coach Shannon Swinscoe said. "She has a true passion for the game and is always trying to improve herself. It has been wonderful to watch her continue to grow each year and I am excited to see what the future holds for her."
Gonzales has already had two fine high school seasons. In 2011, her freshman year, Gonzales had 18 goals and 13 assists and this past season, finished with eight goals and 22 assists.