GHS alum preparing to reach new goals

Amy Carton
Kaitlyn Ebarb

This fall, the Geneseo High School girls’ soccer program will be well-represented at the collegiate level as five former Lady?Leafs will take the next step in their soccer careers.

Kaitlyn Ebarb, the daughter of Troy and Dawn Ebarb, will be playing for the University of Illinois-Springfield women’s soccer team this fall and will be majoring in biology.

“Originally, I had another school picked out, but I went to visit Springfield and talked to the coach and really liked him,” said Ebarb. “I was stuck between two colleges, but I think I made the better choice because it is smaller, it is a good school and you still get the curriculum as you would at the University of Illinois.”

The University of Illinois-Springfield is a four-year, Division II school and then after four years Ebarb will transfer to the University of Illinois.

Ebarb said she decided to continue to play soccer because she has been playing all of her life and she didn’t want to stop playing after high school.

“To play in college is exciting,” said Ebarb.

As for her role next year as a freshman, Ebarb said she has talked to the coach and he definitely has a spot for her and  she will make an impact as a freshman.

To get ready to make this transition, Ebarb said she has been working out on her own and with a personal trainer where she goes through her workout regiment from the school, but admits she is not playing soccer right now.

“It is a lot of running and weight lifting,” said Ebarb. “We work on sprints because we have to do testing when we get to school. The testing is a physical fitness test, sprint tests and we have to run three miles in 22 minutes.”

Ebarb said she is most excited about getting the whole college experience.

“Going to get a college education, meeting new people and being a part of a college team is really exciting,” said Ebarb.

“I am nervous about meeting new people, but at the same time it is exciting to be on my own. I am also nervous about having a new team and having to prove myself.”

Ebarb said that having five girls from this year’s high school team moving on to play college soccer says a lot about the girls’ work ethic and how hard they worked.

“My expectations are I definitely hope to get a good amount of playing time and I want to have fun,” said Ebarb. “I also want to work hard and have fun.”

Camille Repass, the daughter of Kathleen Repass, will play soccer this fall for Parkland College in Champaign.

“The Parkland coach convinced me to play soccer,” said Repass. “My whole life I?had planned to play soccer, but I wanted to go to the University of Illinois and I knew I wasn’t going to play soccer there.

“My last high school season was really great and I knew I?wouldn’t forgive myself if I didn’t fulfill my dream of playing college soccer.”

Repass said her role next year will be to be a part of the defense, but there are no guarantees, she still has to earn her spot.

To get ready, Repass has been training with the workout schedule of weightlifting, running, biking and swimming, provided by her coach.

Repass won’t be alone at Parkland as GHS teammate Lauren DeBuysere will be joining her there.

“It is nice to know someone down there,” said Repass. “We have played together since we were 10 and it is really comforting.”

Repass said she is most excited about just getting started.

“I am really anxious and I am ready to meet all the new people. It is going to be fun,” said Repass.

“I was not real excited about leaving home at first, but I have family and friends around so that is comforting. I am real cautious because I don’t know how the coach will be running practices.”

With five girls from last year’s squad moving on to play college soccer, Repass said it just shows how the program has really progressed.

“We all wanted to go play soccer in college and the last two high school seasons were just great,” said Repass. “I couldn’t have asked for a better time even though it didn’t end up like we wanted it to.”

Repass said her brother Wolfe, who plays soccer for Bradley University, has been giving her some pointers as she prepares for her upcoming season.

“He always urges me to work out,” said Repass. “He didn’t want me to give it up and he was excited I wanted to play.

“My expectations for this year are I would like to earn a starting spot, ideally at center defense, but if I don’t I understand because there are people ahead of me. I don’t want to be disappointed with anything and I want to give it my all.”

Lauren?DeBuysere, the daughter of Doug and Beth DeBuysere, will be attending Parkland College in the fall to play for the women’s soccer team.

“The coach came to see me play, but I was planning on going to Western Illinois University and I wasn’t planning on playing soccer since I tore my meniscus halfway through the season,” said DeBuysere. “I decided to play soccer because I felt like I didn’t get a chance to finish my senior season. I felt like I wasn’t done playing and that I had more to accomplish.”

DeBuysere said she has been recruited as a defender, the same as Repass, and stated it is a big comfort to know someone there.

To get ready for the season, DeBuysere’s coach has sent her a workout schedule that includes, running, weightlifting swimming and biking.

“I’ve had a late start because of my rehab,” said DeBuysere. “But the coach wants us to do the workouts in the offseason so when we start practice we can focus on skills and not training.”

DeBuysere said she is excited about meeting the new girls, but is nervous about not having anyone right there like her parents.

“But you have to pick up everything and go at it on your own,” said DeBuysere.

With her brother Collin playing football at Northwest Missouri State, DeBuysere said he has given her some pointers on how to handle everything.

“He said it is a lot of work and you have to have the mind set and be focused on what you are doing,” said DeBuysere. “You don’t have your parents around and you can’t rely on them for everything else.

“My expectations for my first year are to get to know the other girls I?am playing with and hopefully start a bond with them like we did in high school, but I know it won’t be the same.”

Alyssa Patterson, the daughter of Jeff and Cheri Patterson, will be a member of the University of Wisconsin-LaCrosse women’s soccer team in the fall and will be majoring in pre-physical therapy.

“I didn’t want to go anywhere in Illinois so my dad had me looking at schools in the Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference,” said Patterson. “LaCrosse was the first school I?visited and then I?kept narrowing it down and visited there three times and it was just the best fit. The distance bothers me a little, but it is a good distance. I like the cold weather and I love winter.”

Patterson said she decided to continue to play soccer because she couldn’t see herself ending her soccer career after high school.

“I love it, I like the game and I see myself developing more over the next four years, said Patterson.

Patterson stated that she is not guaranteed a spot on the team, but everyone has to tryout, even the returning players.

“You need to come in conditioned and fit and if you are you are that much ahead of the game,” said Patterson.

To get ahead of the game, Patterson has been working out, weightlifting, running, sprinting and doing agility exercises, along with biking and swimming.?Patterson is also playing this summer for the Quad City United soccer team.

“I?feel more pressure, knowing there is no guarantee, so I am working out more and putting it all on the line,” said Patterson.

Patterson stated she is really excited about meeting new people, but is nervous about feeling homesick, since she doesn’t have anyone around to go to.

“My first year expectations are to be as good as I can be when I get there,” said Patterson.

Jordan?Wagner, the daughter of John and Deb Wagner, will be playing soccer this fall for the Iowa State University women’s soccer team and will be majoring in business.

“Iowa State was the first place I visited and the girls on the team had a lot to do with it,” said Wagner. “I couldn’t see myself being great friends with the girls at the other schools, but the ISU girls talked with me and answered all my questions. The distance is not a big deal because I have made the trip out to Ankeny for club.

“I can’t remember a time when I didn’t play sports and I can’t see myself not playing. I have never known anything else.”

Jordan’s brother, Jeff, is a member of the Coe College baseball team and has told his sister that to play college athletics “you have to have your priorities straight and you can’t just sit around. You need to put yourself in the best position possible.”

As for her role next year, Wagner said the coach has told the freshman that she is looking for the freshman class to make a big impact and for the girls to come in good shape.

To get ready to play Division I soccer, Wagner is working through workout packets provided by the coaches, which include weightlifting, sprinting, running, agility, swimming and biking. Wagner is also keeping her skills sharp by playing with the Ankeny Attack soccer club.

“I am excited to finally be able to be on my own and put everything I?have learned to use without my parents looking over my shoulder,” said Wagner. “I am nervous about being pushed around because I am smaller in size.

“I want to go into my first year in the best shape I can be. If the coach thinks I am good enough for playing-great, but if not I will work hard to get in next year.”

Camille Repass