CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- Each Tuesday through the women’s soccer season, Charlotte49ers.com will feature alumnae of the program in celebration of the program’s 20th campaign in 2013. Former players were selected at random for the Q&A and the plan was to include all eras of the program, dating back to its inception in 1994.
This week’s edition features Carrie Dail (2009-12). Dail, a Hubert, N.C., native, played all four years for John Cullen. She was a member of the 49ers’ 2010 Atlantic 10 co-regular season championship squad.
She started 41 of the 84 games in which she played, tallying 11 goals and eight assists for 30 points. She added three game-winning goals and 87 shots during her career.
Dail tallied all three of her game winners last fall, clinching back-to-back wins for Charlotte at East Carolina and against North Florida in double overtime. She added the winner to knock off Richmond in Atlantic 10 action and finished the season with a career-best six goals.
1. What factors led to your decision to attend Charlotte?
There were several factors that led me to Charlotte. The selling point for me was the vision that (former coach) Jon Lipsitz had for the program. I was impressed with the rapid success that the program was having. They were back-to-back Atlantic 10 champions but their goal was higher than that. I liked the idea of being a part of a growing program that was always striving for more.
Aside from soccer, the campus was really special and the facilities were top-notch. I also have family that lives in Huntersville, just 20 minutes from campus, so that was an added bonus. My senior year of high school, there was a coaching change. I was scared when I learned that Jon Lipsitz was accepting a job to coach at Kentucky but relieved when I learned that the new coach was John Cullen. I had played for Coach Cullen in ODP and learned a lot from him, so I was excited that I knew the new coach. There were numerous reasons that led me to choose Charlotte.
2. How did you see yourself grow as a soccer player and as a person during your collegiate career?
I came in as a nervous, but eager, freshman from a small town. If I could have, I would have majored in soccer. During my time at Charlotte, I think I grew most as a person but it stemmed from my experiences on the field. I learned the importance of balancing soccer with life. As a senior, on the field I was a stronger, smarter and a more confident player than my freshman self. I was also as a stronger, smarter and more confident person than I was when I first arrived in Charlotte. The countless practices, classes and meetings I attended all contributed to my personal growth. At practice, I learned to push through the tough days. Even when I was having an off day, I made it a point to try my best. In my classes, my professors encouraged me to speak in class and got me out of my comfort zone. I was fortunate to get involved with the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee my freshmen year and that organization empowered me to take on more of a leadership role on my team and in other areas of my life. As a freshman, I did not like to speak up or take a leadership role. As a senior, I learned to embrace it even when it is uncomfortable.
3. What are some of your fondest memories of playing soccer with the 49ers?
For some reason, I always loved preseason. I enjoyed getting to know my new teammates and it was always an exciting time of the year. One of my fondest memories was when I scored my first collegiate goal against William and Mary in my first college game. It was a validating moment that reassured me that I could play at this level. Friday night games under the lights were always the best. There was not a better feeling than leaving Transamerica Field on a Friday night with a win.
4. How often do you play soccer these days?
Thankfully, I am able to play almost every day. [Dail is currently playing overseas in Sweden]
5. Where are you currently living (city, state)?
6. What is your current occupation?
7. Do you have any family (husband/kids/pets)?
Enjoying life in Sweden
Not at the moment. 8. What advice would you offer to a current 49ers women’s soccer player?
There will be tough days, but you can do it. You are here for a reason. Believe in yourself and your teammates. If you give it everything you have, you will not have any regrets when you walk off the field after your last game. That is all you can really hope for, to have no regrets.