• Kinlee Abercrombie will play college soccer at Emmanuel College after committing to the school at a signing ceremony earlier this month.

LCHS player Abercrombie signs with Emmanuel College

Lady Indians senior defender Kinlee Abercrombie inked her name to the dotted line and began the next chapter of her soccer career when she committed to take her talents to Emmanuel College after graduation at a recent signing ceremony at the LCHS auditorium.

“I’ve had the opportunity to watch Kinlee play for a long time,” said LCHS head girls soccer coach Don Brock. “I think she decided that she wanted to play at the next level a long time ago and she has done whatever it took to make that a reality.”

Abercrombie said she realized she wanted to take her skills to the collegiate level after watching last season’s seniors be recognized on Senior Night.

“For a while I was questioning whether or not I wanted to play college soccer, if I could do it for four more years, and then last year on Senior Night when I saw those girls who were graduating and realized that that was going to be the last soccer match they would ever play in, I realized that I could not give this up and that I wanted to play for four more years.”

Abercrombie’s love for the game came at an early age and grew into one of her true passions.

“I first started playing when I was four,” Abercrombie said. “My parents put me on a little rec team, so I could run around. I ended up falling completely in love with it.”

Abercrombie proved to be an integral part in many successful seasons for LCMS and LCHS over the course of her soccer career. However, the impact she made in middle school and her early high school years came on the offensive side of the ball. That changed when she decided to give defense a try. It was a change that proved to be a pivotal moment in Abercrombie’s career.

“I didn’t think I’d like it, as I had only played as a striker before my sophomore year,” Abercrombie said. “It is kind of a thankless position, but I realized that I liked it and that I was pretty good at it. So, for myself, I just started rewarding myself for things we did well as a back line. I encouraged myself and my teammates in order to get recognition, and that’s really all I need. It’s so much different than any other position and I just love it.”

When Abercrombie started her senior season with the Lady Indians as a defender she had some big shoes to fill replacing Abi Hunt as the defensive backline’s anchor. However, her play throughout the 2019 season has proven that she was up to the challenge.

“In her freshman year, she had herself in a certain position on the field and made a change between her freshman and sophomore years to become one of the most solid defenders I have ever had,” Brock said. “She has played next to some exceptional center backs, has learned from them and has brought those lessons into her game. She has become an amazing leader for our program and a solid defender for our team. I know she is going to do a phenomenal job at Emmanuel College as well.”

Abercrombie is thankful for all the support she has received from her faith, her parents, her teammates and her coaches over the course of her soccer career and credit them for helping her achieve her dream of playing collegiate soccer come true.

“It built my confidence to know that I could play with such great players,” Abercrombie said. “When I started my freshman season, my confidence wasn’t great. But, over the years, the support from my family, coaches and teammates helped build my confidence up and I got better because of it.” 

In her time at LCHS, Abercrombie has made a lifetime of memories. However, none of those memories is more special to the senior than making the State Playoffs in her freshman season and continuing the success of the previous year’s team.

“Finding out we made State in my freshman year has to be one of my favorite moments here at Lumpkin,” Abercrombie said. “Knowing that the team the year before had made such a deep run in the playoffs and knowing that we had continued that success by earning the same opportunity to chase a championship is something I won’t forget.”

Abercrombie hopes that she will leave a legacy of positivity when she graduates from LCHS this June.

“Soccer-wise I want people to remember me as a leader and that I always tried to be a positive influence on everybody,” Abercrombie said. “It’s good to be recognized for playing sports, but to be remembered as a positive influence and someone people could come to and talk to is what I really hope people remember about me.” 

Abercrombie plans on majoring in kinesiology while attending Emmanuel College with hopes of  entering into the field of physical therapy after graduation.

If Abercrombie puts in the same kind of effort and determination that she put into her high school studies and soccer career while attending Emmanuel College, there is no doubt that she can achieve all the future goals she sets for herself.

“Kinlee has really put the time and dedication into making herself one of the most determined players I have ever coached,” Brock said. “It’s been a pleasure to coach her and to get to be a small part of her career. But, it’s really all on her, she did it.”

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