A whirlwind summer has Michelle Xiao square on the national radar.
The Omaha Westside junior gave a verbal commitment to national power Stanford in late June and was named to the U.S. Under-17 Women’s National Team just a few weeks later.
Xiao, a two-time All-Nebraska selection, will travel with the U.S. team to England later this month for an 11-day trip that features training and a pair of games against England’s U-17 national team.
She is one of seven forwards listed on the roster that will travel to Europe. Xiao said she had a good feeling about making the team after leaving the 10-day, invite-only training camp in Ohio late last month.
“I thought I had played pretty well,” Xiao said. “The quality of soccer was so high. I was excited (to make the team).”
Xiao still has work to do to make the squad that will represent the U.S. at next year’s U-17 World Cup or the CONCACAF Women’s Under-17 World Championship in Jamaica this fall.
That’s her immediate future. But her long-term plans became clearer this summer, as well.
Xiao committed to the Cardinal after being invited to their camp in June. She said her brief stay in Palo Alto was enough to convince her that Stanford was the place for her. The Stanford coaching staff, playing style and campus were also major pluses, Xiao added.
“It has always been my dream school,” she said. “The academics and athletics are always the best.”
Xiao scored 15 goals and dished out five assists as a sophomore, having a hand in 20 of her team’s 24 goals and leading the Warriors to the state tournament.
After a hectic couple of months, Xiao said she recently got a few days to rest. But she was ready to get back at it again.
“I just want to get better every day,” Xiao said.