Krikorian encourages Seminoles to play for national teams
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. -- It was a memorable summer for Florida State midfielder Dagny Brynjarsdottir. While most players spend their offseason playing in summer leagues, Brynjarsdottir was making history at the European Championships, scoring the game winner to send her native Iceland to the quarterfinals for the first time.
"I got the chance to play so I really wanted to try my best and it was amazing to score the goal," Brynjarsdottir said. "I can't really remember what happened afterwards, but it was amazing."
Yet Brynjarsdottir, a junior, is not the only Seminole who has found success at the international level. Last year, senior defender Kassey Kallman earned a gold medal while playing with the United States in the FIFA U-20 World Cup.
"Winning the gold medal is pretty indescribable, a pretty unbelievable feeling, one of the best feelings I've been a part of," Kallman said." "It's a memory I'll never be able to forget. I really think coming to FSU definitely helped prepare me for that."
In fact, many current and former Seminoles have donned the jersey of their native country, something head coach Mark Krikorian finds important to his team's success.
"I think it's naive for us not to embrace the opportunity to bring different cultures and different styles of play and different types of kids together," Krikorian said. "These international kids have brought such a positive influence."
"I love the cultural diversity within the team because soccer is different in every country and we just learn from each other," junior Isabella Scmid said.
Recruiting players who play for their national teams sometimes means they will miss games during the season, a price Krikorian is more than willing to pay.
"Maybe we can have a little bit more of a global perspective and recognize that this is the world game and representing your national team is as great an honor you can have in the game," Krikorian said. "We're just fortunate that these players come here and feel like they get better and their national team coaches feel as if they're getting better."
Which is something his players respect.
"Not every coach would allow there players to go overseas to play for their national team so it means a lot to me," Brynjarsdottir said.
Besides, nothing can match the feeling of putting on your country's colors.
"It's an absolute honor to play with the patch on your chest and when you're with the national team they talk about the people that have come before you," Kallman said.
And come fall, they are all united by the Garnet and Gold.