CEDAR RAPIDS — By the time the current school year started, Sophia Meier had already solidified her college plans.
With two full years of high school left, the Cedar Rapids Prairie junior gave a verbal commitment to play college soccer at the University of Northern Iowa.
“I had options, but none of them were my type,” Meier said after Cedar Rapids Prairie allowed two goals in eight minutes and lost to Dubuque Hempstead in overtime, 2-1, in a Mississippi Valley Conference girls’ soccer game Tuesday night at John Wall Field. “I had help with my (CRSA) club coaches and they felt like when I made the decision that it was right for me. I knew that I wanted to play D-1 soccer, since I was little. I knew that I had to start the process early, otherwise spots would fill up. But, just when I walked on campus, it felt like I was nice and content here.”
Meier scored her team-high sixth goal of the season in the 47th minute for Prairie (5-4, 4-4 MVC) with a dazzling display of speed and dribbling ability.
“I’ve always been taught to take my space,” Meier said. “So I kind of saw it ahead of us. I’ve been working to get my shots off a little quicker, so I thought that was the time.”
As a sophomore, Meier earned a first team all-MVC spot and scored 11 goals for a Prairie team that finished 9-9 and was within one win of qualifying for the state tournament. Her improved speed, one-on-one play and field awareness have the Hawks excited about the potential for this group.
“She’s an incredible attacking talent,” first-year Prairie Coach Jon Lenhart said. “Any time she has the ball at her feet, she’s dangerous. Teams know about her, but a lot of times it does not make a difference. She’s still dangerous no matter what happens.”
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With 2:07 left in regulation, freshman Jaime Weidemann tied the game with her first goal of the season for Dubuque Hempstead (7-3, 4-3). Less than six minutes into overtime, Hempstead won the game with a goal by freshman Grace Daack, her team-high ninth score of the season.
AT JOHN WALL FIELD
Dubuque Hempstead 2, Cedar Rapids Prairie 1 (OT)
Goals — DH: Jaime Weidemann 1 (1), Grace Daack 1 (9); CRP: Sophia Meier 1 (6). Assist — DH: Erin Rieckens 1 (5).
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