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The Voice of the Tyrone Area High School

Tyrone Eagle Eye News

The Voice of the Tyrone Area High School

Tyrone Eagle Eye News

LaRosa Makes an Immediate Impact at Westminster

Photo+courtesy+of+Chloe+LaRosa
Photo courtesy of Chloe LaRosa

In just her first collegiate season, Tyrone alum Chloe LaRosa earned an impressive number of personal accolades and led the Westminster College Women’s Soccer team to a successful 2023 season.

“Our season went really well. For it being my freshman year it was such a long and eventful experience,” LaRosa said.

We had high expectations for her, but this was a pretty amazing season for her

— Westminster Head Coach Girish Thakar

LaRosa was the only freshman starter on a Westminster squad that finished 14-4-2 and 9-1 in the PAC conference.

Westminster was the number two seed in this year’s PAC Championship Tournament but lost to sixth-seeded Franciscan 2-1 in the semifinal round.

LaRosa scored 16 goals on the season, the third most by any freshman in all of Division III women’s soccer, and her 35 points (16 goals and three assists) was second in the league.

She also netted a league-leading seven game-winning goals and scored multiple goals in four matches, including a pair of hat tricks in non-conference wins over Penn State Altoona and Pitt-Bradford.

“You don’t get too many hat tricks in college so having two of them as a freshman is amazing,” said Westminster Head Coach Girish Thakar.

Along the way, LaRosa earned several individual awards, including the PAC Newcomer of the Week on September 11, PAC Offensive Player of the Week on September 18, the United Soccer Coaches DIII Women’s Soccer Player of the Week on September 20, and PAC Newcomer Player of the Year on November 7.

LaRosa was also one of four Westminster players, and the only freshman, named to the 2023 United Soccer Coaches NCAA Division III Women’s All-Region VII Team.

Thakar knew that LaRosa was a good player long before she arrived on campus, but her freshman season was better than even he expected.

“We had high expectations for her, but this was a pretty amazing season for her,” Thakar said. “When I watched her play at ID camp in June, I felt that she had all the tools to score goals for us. She has speed, she can shoot with both feet, you know, and it was just a question of how she would adapt to the college game where everyone is a little bit quicker, and everyone can mark you a little bit tighter.”

LaRosa answered that question in her first season, and Thaker is hoping to see her improve even more as she matures.

You know when people talk to me about her they ask, where did she come from? You know, we always say you won’t believe this, but she’s from Tyrone High School and everyone’s like, where is Tyrone and how come we didn’t know about this school

— Head Coach Girish Thakar

“We need to make sure that she gets a little bit stronger. We want to make sure that she improves. At the college level, the hard thing is often not the first year, because people don’t know who you are. But when you have a reputation going into your second year, it becomes a little bit more difficult. You know, next year, being the rookie of the year, everything’s going to be a bit harder,” Thakar said.

Central Pennsylvania is generally not known as a hotbed for women’s soccer, so LaRosa’s season might even help pave the way for other area players to make their mark in college.

“You know when people talk to me they ask, where did she come from? You know, we always say you won’t believe this, but she’s from Tyrone High School and everyone’s like, where is Tyrone, and how come we didn’t know about this school?” Thakar said.

Off the field, LaRosa is just as committed to her studies as she is to her soccer career.

“I like my college classes a lot, but it’s definitely a change. You have a lot more freedom, but it comes with ten times more responsibilities,” said LaRosa.

Many college athletes struggle with the transition from high school to college, but LaRosa is making a name for herself on the field and in the classroom.

 

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About the Contributor
Elexis Hess, Features Editor
Lexi Hess is currently a junior at Tyrone Area High School. This is Lexi's third year on the Tyrone Eagle Eye News team. She has an interest in writing features as well as sports stories. She is a studious student who takes her academics seriously. She is also involved in school by participating in clubs, such as the Student Council, Prom Committee, and NHS. In her free time, you will probably find her relaxing and watching movies. Her plans after high school are to go to a trade school and pursue a career as an ultrasound tech. This year, Lexi hopes to produce well-written articles and improve her skills in journalism and photography.

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