Once the guy left, I told Jrue not to worry; he was cuter than Darren. And we became friends. Lauren and Jrue regularly hung out with mutual friends and played pickup basketball together, but it wasn't until both left UCLA that their relationship grew into something more.
By January , Lauren had already stepped up to the next level of international play, earning her first start with the U. WNT in a match against Germany, and scoring her first goal in a shutout against Mexico. She was named Pac Player of the Year. Lauren was an alternate on the U. So, as hard as that was, I really embraced and accepted that role. Looking back, I think it was perfect for me, because I knew my role was to encourage everybody else and be ready when my time came.
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In March , Lauren joined the Pali Blues, a California-based United Soccer Leagues USL developmental team that allowed college players like Lauren the chance to play alongside established international players while maintaining collegiate eligibility. The Blues went undefeated, capping off their season by winning the W-League championship over Washington.
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She tied the UCLA career record with 71 goals. Despite her busy schedule, Lauren was careful to put even more focus on her relationship with Christ, making sure to connect with Him every day whether she was home or abroad. She listens to worship music as often as she can. She was chosen behind only Heath, and Boston head coach Tony DiCiccio was more than ecstatic when she was available with the No. She has the ability to play in the tightest spaces, especially in the penalty area, [where] we were lacking that last year.
Meanwhile, she finished as the U. After a second season with Boston, Lauren returned again to the international pitch, gaining more and more experience with the U. For the first time, she logged more than 1, minutes in a season for the U. WNT head coach Pia Sundhage said.
In , Lauren played in 31 games for the U. WNT, including all six Olympic matches. Following the Olympics, Holiday was one of three U. She and Jrue tied the knot in July in an outdoor ceremony attended by teammates past and present, many of whom are fellow brothers and sisters in Christ. Following the season, she was named the U. Soccer Female Athlete of the Year, becoming the first player in U.
Personally, as a parent of a young female soccer athlete, I can't tell you how much of a blessing it is to have an athlete like Lauren as a role model for my daughter. Holiday approached Krueger with plans to invite others in attendance—from the front office to security guards—to join a pre-game prayer session.
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In fact, before each FCKC home game, Holiday goes to the opposing locker room and invites everyone to pray together. When the Blues are on the road, she leads the team and others in prayer, too. Sometimes, Holiday said, she wrestles with the easier decision to just hunker down and separate herself from everyone.
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Skype helps when it comes to staying close to Jrue, who juggles their marriage with a full-time NBA travel schedule of his own. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good. Be devoted to one another in love. Honor one another above yourselves.
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In August , Maria and Corinne launched their first class of game changers, providing 11 college students with industry professionals as mentors. Together, with a network of influence, these mentors served as a community that guided women and minority students, providing insight and a variety of opportunities to gain experience. Their mission was simple, change the landscape of the sports industry to reflect the diversity on the playing field. All the woman did was reach out and touch Jesus's hem.
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