Hailey Palmer committed to NCAA Texas Tech's Red Raiders Women's Soccer Team in October 2019 and will sign with the college in 2020, her senior year of high school.
She has been involved with ESI since she was 12 years old. Her commitment to continued group trainings, one-on-one trainings, and training with ESI's male teams helped her improve on the field.
"ESI was such a great experience for me that truly helped me develop as a player," Hailey said. "ESI helped me to work on my skill and confidence in a challenging yet positive environment."
Putting in the Individual Effort
Hailey was also part of a Girl's USDA Program and attended the US National Camp. She currently plays on an ECNL (Elite Clubs National League) team that is a highly competitive, traveling league. The time at ESI supported her critical personal development that is difficult to get through team training alone.
"Training at ESI was always focused on improving individual needs whereas club can tend to be focused on more of the team’s needs," Hailey said.
It's All in the Finish
Hailey has always known she wanted to play at the highest level of soccer and ESI provided the solution to filling in the gaps of getting there. As a forward and attacking mid, Hailey said Stéphane Auvray worked with her to develop the skillsets that are vital to players in these positions.
"He has done a lot of finishing with me that helped me with my finishing technique," Hailey said. "He has so much knowledge from his experience of playing the game. He knows exactly how to explain concepts from the game to you so you can apply it directly your play."
Hardwork Pays Off
Hailey understood training at ESI fuels the passion for the game and her desire to be the best. When advising other players who want to go further in their soccer careers, Hailey said:
"First and foremost, have passion for the game. Let your love for the game motivate you and create that inner drive that’s necessary to succeed. Set goals for yourself and track your progress. Put work in outside of team trainings. And most importantly, don’t get discouraged. Everything happens for a reason, and hard work will get you there."
Soccer's Life Lessons
While training at ESI the focus is on soccer, but whether the players realize it or not they are always kicking around life lessons that help them grow as people too. Hailey noted that Stéphane taught lessons in emphasizing perserverance, strategy in knowing when to mix things up, and having fun while playing your best.
"Stéphane is not only a great coach, but a great person," Hailey said. "He leads by example and he wants the best out of each and every one of his players, and it definitely shows."