Ahead of the third annual USL Experience, hosted by Phoenix Rising FC, several alumni from the past two events take some time to recall their time in Cincinnati in 2015 and San Antonio in 2016.
Katie Mallory was selected to attend the 2017 USL Experience, hosted by San Antonio FC, after standing out with the DDYSC Wolves in the Super Y League. Mallory was able to experience professional-level training and matches, while meeting USL professionals and making new friends along the way.
Now playing with the Concorde Fire 2004 DA team, Mallory took some time to recall her fond memories of competing in the SYL and attending the 2017 USL Experience.
The USL Experience provides top SYL players with some of the highest-level youth competition in the country while delivering a unique look into professional American soccer through the league’s relationship with the United Soccer Leagues, LLC, operators of the Division II USL, the new USL Division III, the Premier Development League and the SYL.
SYL: How did you enjoy competing in the Super Y League?
Katie Mallory: The Super Y League was a joy to play in. I was able to experience so many things that have made me the player I am today. I am so grateful to the Super Y League for all they have done for me at such a young age.
SYL: What was your favorite experience while playing in the SYL?
KM: My favorite experience while playing in the SYL was the USL Experience. In San Antonio, I was exposed to the life of a pro soccer player. I experienced high-level games and coaching and met life-long friends.
SYL: What did you most enjoy about playing with your SYL club specifically?
KM: Playing with DDYSC at the Super Y League Finals was a dream come true. My team and I were able to represent our club on a huge platform. We bonded so much as a team and I absolutely loved it!
SYL: Players at the USL Experience get to participate in professional-level training, matches, interviews and more. What was your favorite part of the Experience?
KM: My favorite part of the USL Experience was the professional-level training. It was a very competitive and intense environment designed to push you as a player and competitor.
SYL: What was the most valuable lesson you learned at the USL Experience?
KM: At the USL Experience the interviews, games and training sessions taught me how important your level of maturity is as a professional athlete.
SYL: Where are you currently playing and how are you enjoying it?
KM: I am currently playing on the 2004 DA team at Concorde Fire in Atlanta, Georgia. I love the intensity and competitiveness but most of all I enjoy the camaraderie I share with my teammates and coaches.