This week the Virginia women’s soccer team travels to the Southwest for the Sun Devil Desert Classic in Tempe, Ariz. The Cavaliers meet Arizona on Friday and face Arizona State Sunday in the tournament. Virginiasports.com caught up with freshman forward Caroline Miller to recap the team’s impressive wins over Liberty and Hofstra last week and preview this week’s games.
Question: You earned some impressive accolades this week, being named co-ACC Player of the Week and Top Drawer Soccer National Player of the Week. What does it mean to you to be honored like that just two weeks into your college career?
Miller: It is a really exciting. I wasn’t really expecting anything like that. I am really honored by it. I am just going to keep working hard and hopefully this is just the beginning and there will be even better things in the weeks and years to come.
Question: How have you been able to come into this team and make such an impact so early in your rookie season?
Miller: Between preseason camp, preseason games, and I was here over the summer, I have had a lot of opportunities to get to know the girls and play with them. It has given me a chance to start a new dynamic with them and that has been helpful. I have really gotten to know them both on and off the court.
Question: You are part of a large first-year class. How has your group integrated with the rest of the team?
Miller: There are so many of us, but we became really close this summer, going to summer session together. I think because we are such a big group, it has helped us adjust because there are almost as many as us as the upperclassmen. The veterans have been very welcoming to us. As a whole, it has worked out pretty well.
Question: Last weekend you got to play your first two games at Klöckner Stadium. How was that experience for you and was it what you expected?
Miller: It was really exciting. I have been coming to games for the past couple of years and just waiting for it to be my turn to play out there. Just getting to be able to play at Klöckner, in front of our fans, was definitely an adrenaline rush.
Question: How is the environment at Klöckner different being on the field compared to in the crowd?
Miller: When you are in the stands, you don’t realize how many people are there. When you are on the field, you look up, especially with how steep the stands are, and you see all the people. The first game, I looked up and thought ‘Oh my God, I am like a fish in a fishbowl.’ But playing front of that many people is fun.
Question: This weekend you travel West to play Arizona and Arizona State. What you expecting from the trip?
Miller: The crisp 107-degree heat, of course. But, I am excited to play against those teams. We don’t get very many chances to play teams from the Pac-10 or the west coast in general, so I am looking forward to see how we match up against those teams. It should be a fun trip.