Rio Women Go International
Rio Grande Sports Information
RIO GRANDE, Ohio – It’s not very often that a person has the opportunity to be named the “first ever” to do something.
Terms like “trailblazer” may come to mind.
That same term can be applied to Hannah Brindle, an incoming freshman left back on the RedStorm’s women’s soccer team.
Hailing from Bolton, England, Brindle is the first international player ever to sign with the women’s soccer team, a major accomplishment in the program’s history.
“Playing soccer in America has been a massive dream of mine since I started playing soccer at the age of seven,” Brindle said. “I’m very excited to sign with the University of Rio Grande. It has always been a big dream of mine and I can’t wait to start playing.”
The 5-foot-2 left back comes to Rio Grande from Ladybridge High School and Bolton Sixth Form College.
During her playing days at Ladybridge, Brindle earned All-County honors in Greater Manchester County. She’s one of many new faces on the 2013 RedStorm roster and she acknowledged that she wants to “help a young team move forward.”
“I think I will offer much needed depth with my technical ability and my experience of playing at a high standard back in England,” Brindle said.
Third-year head coach Callum Morris is happy to have Brindle on board.
"We've got high hopes for Hannah," Morris said. "She's our first international player here and I'm sure there will be some pressure on here because of that. She comes from a very solid playing background in England and turned down a couple of good programs to come play for us."
Sought after by conference foes like the University of Cumberlands, Brindle noted that Rio Grande was able to sign her by not only offering a stellar soccer program but also by giving her an opportunity to further her education in Sport and Exercise Science.
"It's a lot quieter than I imagined," said Brindle, when asked about how Rio Grande differs from her hometown. "I've made a lot of friends pretty quickly and I get along with all of the girls. I like the smaller campus and the fact that everybody knows each other."
And what's the most notable difference in the game itself?
"There are differences," she said. "The game is faster and more athletic over here. The game's more technical and the players are little smaller back home. We train quite a bit more here as well because fitness is very important. The biggest difference for me, though, might be getting used to the heat."
Morris said that Brindle brings an added dimension to his program that he hasn't had in the past.
"She's a left-sided player who has fantastic technique," he said. "We had a team full of right-footed players last year and none of them were really able to use their left foot properly. We're hoping to be able to utilize her ability in terms of attacking."
Brindle, for her part, is setting the bar very high for herself right from the start.
“I want to break as many record as possible,” she said.
Only time will tell if that comes true, but one thing is for sure – the British Invasion has officially hit the RedStorm women's soccer team.