June 7, 2011
EVANSTON, Ill. -- Four rising Northwestern sophomores are among the top young players in the Midwest who will have a chance to play at this month's Junior National Championships in Virginia Beach. Maria Kovalchuk, Nikki Parsley and Kelsey Thompson all were selected to the Midwest Junior High Performance team while Julia Retzky was chosen as an alternate.
The four Wildcats will train at the Midwest High Performance Center in Louisville this weekend with the goal of being selected to compete at the Junior National Championships. That event, which will be played in Virginia Beach June 18-25, is a round-robin tournament featuring top athletes from each of USA Field Hockey's High Performance Centers.
Parsley, an All-Midwest Region selection as a freshman who started all 20 games in 2010, recently completed a competitive tour with the United States U-19 national team this spring. Retzky and Kovalchuk played in 20 and 18 games, respectively, and made significant contributions to Northwestern's back line and midfield. Thompson redshirted her inaugural season at NU.
All four are among a strong contingent of returning Wildcats who in 2011 will be looking to build on back-to-back winning seasons.
Northwestern head coach Tracey Fuchs and assistant coach Ali Johnstone each are serving as assistants on this year's Midwest High Performance Center coaching staff. The team will be under the direction of Louisville head coach Justine Sowry at the Junior National Championships.
For more information on this year's High Performance Centers, visit USAFieldHockey.com.
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