Michaela Jacobsen will play U Sports women’s soccer next season for the Pronghorns. -Image: Contributed

Michaela Jacobsen will play U Sports women’s soccer next season for the Pronghorns. -Image: Contributed

United/Jr. Heat product to play Canada West

West Kelowna’s Michaela Jacobsen has committed to the University of Lethrbidge soccer for 2018

West Kelowna’s Michaela Jacobsen has signed on with the University of Lethbridge Pronghorns for the 2018 Canada West women’s soccer season.

Michaela, a Grade 12 student at Mt. Boucherie Secondary, played last season with the Kelowna United/UBCO Junior Heat U17/18 Showcase Project, a program designed to help local players connect with university and college coaches.

Michaela trained from mid-August through November, finishing up the project with the Astroturf Collegiate Showcase tournament in Seattle.

There she made contact with the University of Lethbridge coaching staff and soon after committed to the Pronghorns.

“I’ve been playing soccer for as long as I can remember, it’s always been a big part of my life,” said Jacobsen. “Being able to continue playing in university is amazing, and makes all those times I’ve had to say, ‘I can’t – I have soccer,’ seem worth it now.

“I am thankful for all of the coaches I’ve had over the years,” she added, “for everything the game of soccer has given me and I would also like to thank the University of Lethbridge for giving me this chance.”

At the U of L, Michaela will pursue a Bachelor of Science in Kinesiology. The Pronghorns compete in the Canada West conference of U Sport, the highest level of varsity athletics in the country.

“We are extremely happy for Michaela having been offered the chance to continue playing football at the (U Sport) level and obtaining a soccer scholarship to Lethbridge, it is great to see her hard work being rewarded with these type of opportunities,” said Dante Zanatta, technical director for Kelowna United/UBCO Jr. Heat.

“There are many pathways players can take to pursue their goals, and when we started the Jr. Heat program one year ago it was to provide players with the training and chances to be in front of (Canadian university) and NCAA coaches to help them achieve their goals,” Zanatta added.“We believe that Michaela will be the first of many players both on the female and male side of the program that will go on to post secondary football.”

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