Brennan Angel

Senior forward Kelsey Carroll is among the Cal Poly women’s soccer team’s leaders in nearly every category this season.

But her impressive statistics and individual accomplishments have not taken away from her dedication.

For Carroll, team success is most important.

“I’ve done well, but when the team’s not doing well, it makes me think I’m not doing as well as I could be,” Carroll said.

Through 11 games for Cal Poly (6-5-0), Carroll is second on the team in goals (4), tied for second in assists (2), second in points (10), first in shots (20), second in shots on goal (12) and first in game-winners (two).

As for the game against UC Davis last Friday, Carroll had one assist and Cal Poly won 3-0 against an Aggies team that left with a 7-2 record.

“We played really, really well,” Carroll said of the UC Davis contest. “Everyone worked hard for each other.”

On Sunday, though, the Mustangs lost to Sacramento State in double overtime, 2-1. It was a frustrating game for the team, but Carroll thinks it has helped them grow.

“More losses this year helped us to examine ourselves,” Carroll said.

Carroll’s top running mate this season has been sophomore forward Ashley Vallis, who leads the team in goals (five), points (11), shots on goal (13) and is second in shots (17).

Last season started off very strong, she said, but the Big West Conference season did not go so well.

In 2005, Cal Poly finished 10-5-4 overall but just 2-4-1 in conference play. It marked the first time since 2001 the Mustangs had missed the NCAA Tournament.

It seems that this year the lessons are being learned early on.

Construction at Alex G. Spanos Stadium has prevented the team from playing at its usual location, but the change has not seemed to slow them down.

Cal Poly has won four of five home games at the Sports Complex.

“It kind of feels like our own stadium,” Carroll said of the Sports Complex. “It’s more of a soccer field.”

As a freshman in 2003, Carroll played in all 22 games, starting six. With eight goals and five assists, she was second on the Mustangs in scoring (21 points). She was second-team All-Big West that season after posting game-winners against Washington State, Baylor, Long Beach State and UC Irvine.

A communication studies senior, Carroll is in her last season.

Always wanting to attend Cal Poly, she was first discovered at a soccer camp during high school by her coach, Alex Crozier.

Ever since she started playing at age 7, Carroll has enjoyed two things – her passion for soccer and her friends.

“My best friends have always been on my soccer team,” she said.

Carroll is already preparing herself for life after soccer.

“It’s really sad. It’s always been a big part of my life,” she said.

But it’s not over yet. She still plans to play in women’s leagues, and wherever she can “as long as my body can hold up,” she said.

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