By: Joe Letizio ’22
I had the opportunity of interviewing JACQUIE LACEK (STAFFORD) and learning about her soccer journey. During the interview, she explained that her journey started when she was five years old. For those who don’t know, Jacquie began playing soccer for the Greece Girls Soccer team (in the town she grew up in), up until the age of 8 yrs old. After this, she played travel ball for Greece Eclipse, which went on until she was 13 yrs old. She then switched clubs and played for the Rochester Jr. Rhinos, another travel team, until she left for college.
Jacquie played soccer at Central Michigan University (CMU) until her graduation in 2006. She was named to the MAC All-Freshman Team in 2003, the All-MAC Second Team in 2004 and 2005, and earned a spot on the All-MAC First Team her senior year. She also earned Academic All-MAC honors three times and was named to the Academic All-District First Team and the National Soccer Coaches Association of America Scholar-Athlete Second Team twice. Her seven assists in 2006 rank second in program history for a single season, while her ten goals and 25 points in 2004 both rank third.
Central Michigan University:
During her time at CMU, Jacquie thoroughly enjoyed how welcoming and amazing the campus was. Her ability to earn her spot as a starter her freshman year ultimately drove the inner competitor in her to say yes! CMU also had a great teaching program, which attracted Jacquie as she planned to major in secondary education.
Jacquie always strived to be better than the day before, which drove her to be a better athlete. She used running as a way to stay fit, on top of practicing 2-3x a week. Practicing allowed her to find areas she needed to work on, and she would practice until she mastered each and every skill.
Throughout our conversation, Jacquie expressed the importance of finding joy in what you are doing. Furthermore, she explained that working out and going to practice should not be a chore; rather, it should be for pure enjoyment. Some other fun activities Jacquie likes to participate in is shopping, walking around the vibrant city of Cincinnati, and being by the water.
Some individuals who have influenced her way of thinking were her parents, brothers, and of course, her coaches. These people allowed her to achieve many things throughout her years playing soccer. These accomplishments include high school accolades (NYS Player of the Year (2002), High School State Champion three out of four years, High School, and College Hall of Fame.
Jacquie’s other traits include her drive for overall fitness, keeping a positive mentality, her dedication to her family, her commitment to be better than she was the day before, and her determination/competitiveness to always want to win. Though she has a more challenging time bouncing back from a bad game, this does not limit the individual she is today.
*Valley Girl does not own the photo used in this article.