Agnew makes strong im­pres­sion at na­tional camp

Cape Breton Post - - SPORTS - SOC­CER BY NEIL DAVID­SON THE CANA­DIAN PRESS

It’s just Feb­ru­ary and Lind­say Agnew is al­ready hav­ing a very good year.

Taken by the Wash­ing­ton Spirit in the Jan­uary NWSL draft, the for­mer Ohio State for­ward then made the most of her first camp with the se­nior Cana­dian na­tional team.

“I was im­pressed,” said coach John Herd­man.

Agnew, 21, didn’t fig­ure in Canada’s 3-2 win over Mex­ico on Feb. 4, a match billed as a cel­e­bra­tion of the Olympic bronze medal team.

But Herd­man said she was a “strong can­di­date” to play in the re­match, a closed-door ses­sion that was even­tu­ally can­celled due to poor weather in Van­cou­ver.

“What she’s show­ing is she’s bring­ing that Cana­dian steel,” Herd­man said. “She’s got that nat­u­ral grit that you see from the Tan­cre­dis and the Wilkin­sons. But what we’ve been re­ally im­pressed with in the in­trasquads (was) she scored a lovely goal. And she’s got a real at­tack­ing mind­set.”

For­ward Melissa Tan­credi and full­back Rhian Wilkin­son, who have 306 caps be­tween them, played their fi­nal game for Canada against Mex­ico.

An ath­letic five foot nine, Agnew is hard to knock off the ball and able to run at and beat de­fend­ers. And with 19 as­sists, fourth in Ohio State his­tory, she can play provider as well. More than a few Buck­eye goals started with Agnew win­ning the ball in her own half.

Se­lected 19th over­all, Agnew was the first Cana­dian taken in the 2017 NWSL draft. Team­mate Nichelle Prince of Ajax., Ont., went 28th over­all to the Hous­ton Dash.

Agnew led the Buck­eyes with 10 goals and eight as­sists in 21 games last sea­son. Prince had five goals and five as­sists in 19 games. They were the first Ohio State play­ers ever drafted in the NWSL.

Be­cause of school com­mit­ments, Agnew did not at­tend the draft in Los An­ge­les. She watched it un­fold online with Prince and her other room­mates.

“I just heard when my name was called ... It was def­i­nitely a mo­ment,” she said. “I was sit­ting there, I wasn’t ex­pect­ing it. And then they said Lind­say and I still didn’t know if it was go­ing to me. And they said Agnew and we all freaked out and start­ing scream­ing. It was pretty in­de­scrib­able, a pretty sur­real mo­ment for me.” Prince went soon af­ter. “That was awe­some,” said Agnew. “We’ve kind of been go­ing through this process to­gether. We were room­mates in the dorm fresh­man year and al­ways had dreams of play­ing pro­fes­sional.”

There was more good news when Herd­man in­vited her to his first post-Olympic camp.

“It’s been a good 2017 so far,” Agnew said hap­pily.

Agnew and Prince were team­mates at the FIFA U-17 World Cup in Azer­bai­jan in 2012 and the U-20 World Cup in Canada in 2014, along with Kadeisha Buchanan, Ash­ley Lawrence, Re­becca Quinn and Kailen Sheri­dan (taken 23rd in the draft by New Jersey-based Sky Blue FC).

Herd­man first took note of Agnew at an un­der-17 camp.

CP PHOTO

Canada’s Lind­say Agnew (13) is sur­rounded by Ger­man play­ers dur­ing ac­tion at the FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup quar­ter-fi­nals in Ed­mon­ton, Alta., on Aug. 16, 2014.

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