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A technical midfielder for Lonestar SC, Zayne Matulis will head to Cambridge next fall after verbally committing to one of the nation’s most prestigious schools.
“I committed to Harvard because the combination of both high-quality academics and a high-quality soccer program really appealed to me,” she told TopDrawerSoccer.com. “As soon as I stepped on campus on my first visit, I felt immediately at home and knew it was the perfect place for me.”
The lure of Cambridge aside, Matulis loved everything about the soccer program as well.
“The coaches are amazing, the facilities are beautiful, and the team made me feel really accepted,” she said. “For me, team dynamic was always important in selecting a school, because my teammates have always been my best friends. Seeing how close-knit the team was and how much they supported one another, on and off the field, was important for me.”
Another element of the school that she liked was the tradition and history at one of the USA’s oldest universities.
“It intrigues me to think of all of the past students that have gone through this school becoming amazingly influential people,” she said. “I just can't wait to see the opportunities that I have here. Overall, I'm so excited to experience what being a Harvard student-athlete is all about.”
A passionate player who always puts in a shift for her So Cal Blues U17 side, Lauren Markwith will travel all the way across the country for her collegiate career in the Ivy League.
“I committed to Penn because it suited both of my needs in academics and soccer,” she told TopDrawerSoccer.com. “Penn is ranked as one of the top 10 universities in the country. The Penn soccer program has a long winning tradition and competes for the Ivy League title every year.”
A positive experience with everyone involved on the soccer team helped convince her that this was the right move for her to make.
“The soccer program has a hard working and competitive environment, but it also has a family feel,” she said. “Everyone works for each other and looks after one another. While on my visit coach [Darren] Ambrose, his coaching staff, and the players made me feel like part of the Quaker family.”
Markwith also liked the school’s downtown location.
She brings international experience with her to Philly. A Guatemalan-American, she caught the eye of Guatemala National Team director Benjamin Monterroso, who invited her to come to Central America for a tryout. She impressed, and played at both the U17 and U20 CONCACAF qualifiers.
“Playing internationally was awesome,” she said. “I learned that I could play and compete with the best in the world. I am a proud American, but I am also Guatemalan and being able to play and represent my other half is something I am so very proud of.”
Markwith is the second commitment to Penn for 2016.