Dream Job | Casey Short

February 2017 View more

Casey Short is making her dream a reality. The Naperville native began her soccer career at Naperville Central High School, then Florida State University. After overcoming injuries to her ACL and MCL, Short played a season in Norway before landing on the Chicago Red Stars roster in 2016. Last fall she accomplished one of the greatest honors within her sport: She was called up to play on the US Women’s National Team.

Who has been your biggest support system and how have they helped you?

My family—I credit my dad especially for helping my recovery process, by flying down to Florida State after my ACL and MCL injuries. They really supported me mentally as well because this was not the route I was expecting to take. However, the injuries did allow me to work on parts of my game I would not have worked on otherwise.

What has been your favorite memory being on the Chicago Red Stars?

Scoring my first professional goal, which happened to be in Chicago, was extremely exciting for me, even though it was not a pretty goal. It was super neat being able to score that in front of all my family and friends at Toyota Park. It was a special moment, coming full circle, after a long journey through injuries and all the support I had.

What is an average Chicago Red Stars practice like?

The team usually gets to the practice facility around 10:00 a.m., beginning with some movement preparation for about a half hour. That is followed by watching film before heading out to the practice fields. Once we take the field, we are out there for at least a couple of hours every practice. Like any sport, taking care of your body and recovering is crucial, so you can compete at a high level every day. I take care of mine by a post-practice cold tub, or post treatment and recovery, as well as maintaining a healthy diet.

What is your game day routine?

It’s my tradition to have a coffee and go on a walk for every home game, that we have since we are on our own when the game’s in Chicago. However, away games are a bit different since the whole team is in the same hotel. We have a team walk and stretch during the morning of game day, followed by a pre-game meal as a team.

How does one make the US Women’s National Team and how does it feel to even be considered? 

There could be scouts at any time or any place that you play and they have to send you an invite to camp in order to make the team. Once you make it to camp, you are called a “floater” and are essentially on trial the entire time. It’s a very nerve-wracking process and you always need to be on top of your game because every little thing matters.

Like every little soccer girl’s dream, it’s always been one of mine—to be able to play for the national team. During my rehab stage after my injuries, the national team is what inspired me to work hard and keep a positive mindset. When I received the call about the invitation, I was not only emotional but very honored for the opportunity they presented me. As exciting as it is, there is still a lot of hard work ahead of me.