We are delighted to share our most recent interview with you! Former Charlotte Latin and Charlotte Independence standout goalkeeper Hope Morrow joined us to share her wisdom about the transition to college soccer and much more! The current Coastal Carolina goalkeeper had plenty to share so enjoy it all below!
1. You played multiple sports as a youth soccer player, how do you think they affected your development as a goalkeeper?
I think that playing multiple sports as a youth soccer player helped improve my goalkeeping. I think most people you speak to would agree that there is a huge crossover between sports. Basketball and goalkeeping are so different yet they utilize the same skills and, in my opinion, basketball helped me become a better goalkeeper.
2. You are another of a long line of successful goalkeepers to come out of Charlotte Latin High School, most notably Claudia Dickey (UNC) and Ruthie Jones (Duke). What was it like training and playing with players of that caliber?
Looking back now, it was probably one of the coolest things ever. Training with such talented goalkeepers not only gave me something to strive for but their presence also taught me how to train and act at a certain standard. Training with such skilled goalkeepers also brought out a strong competitive side of me that has continued to be present in my training.
3. You originally committed to USC and then decided to open up your recruitment again, ultimately landing at Coastal Carolina. What was the thought process behind that decision?
When I committed as a freshman, I was hyper focused on going to the best soccer school I could. I loved the coaches and the atmosphere at South Carolina, but I wanted to go somewhere that I would play and help make a difference. I wanted to help bring success to a smaller program and I wanted to compete on day one for the starting position.
4. How did you prepare for your first college season? What was your focus during the summer before preseason?
To prepare for my first college season, I worked all summer. Three times a week I would have a private session, then I would stay and do my fitness packet. After I finished running I would then go lift. The other days of the week I would train with a boys team and do fitness with them. Over the summer, I also focused on eating healthier and putting food into my body that was beneficial for my athletic improvement.
5. How has the transition to college soccer been? Biggest challenges so far?
The transition to college soccer has not been that difficult in my opinion. The speed is a little faster, and girls can kick a little harder, but the game is the same. I think the biggest challenge I have faced is time management; with classes, homework, soccer, and travel, it’s a lot to balance.
6. What are your thoughts on the new NIL rules for college athletes? Have you been able to take advantage of them?
I think the new NIL rules are great for college athletes. However, I have not been able to take advantage of them yet
7. Being a freshman goalkeeper coming into a new program, what is your mentality like in training? Are you more focused on learning or is your focus on solidifying the number one spot?
As a freshman goalkeeper coming into a new program, I am focused on solidifying the starting spot. Yet, at the same time I know to keep the spot I need to continue to improve, therefore I also am focused on learning and improving my skill.
8. What are your goals for your college career? With the growth of the NWSL over the years, do you see professional soccer as a viable target for young female goalkeepers such as yourself?
My goal for my college career is to help my team win a conference championship. I want to make as much of an impact as possible in my time at Coastal. With the growth of the NWSL, I do believe that professional soccer is a possible option and a great opportunity for all collegiate goalkeepers following their college careers.
9. Who was your biggest inspiration growing up as a goalkeeper? Why?
Hope Solo was my biggest inspiration growing up as a goalkeeper. Not only did we share the same name, but she was so strong and crucial to the women’s team and their success that it inspired me. She somewhat made a name for women’s goalkeepers and inspired so many.
10. Last but not least, you used to play basketball. What's more pressure? Saving a pk or game winning free throws?
Definitely game winning free throws. I honestly enjoy PK’s because I feel no pressure to save them. Yes, I would love to save them but there is more pressure on the kicker than there is on the goalkeeper. The person taking the kick should score. No one ever blames a goalkeeper when a PK is scored on them, therefore PK’s are only a time to make a great game winning save.