For a moment, Sumner High girls soccer coach Robi Turley stopped with her pregame setup and watched her team before its win over Kennedy Catholic earlier this month in a West Central/Southwest bi-district playoff game at Sparks Stadium.
And for a second, a smile cracked the coach’s face as she stared out, watching one of her players, Jordan Thompson, high-five a teammate before hammering a shot at the goal.
“Not a lot of teams can say that a defender carried them all season long,” she said. “There’s not a lot of defenders who can do that like Jordan (Thompson) has carried this team the last two years. I mean, how many defenders win back-to-back league MVP titles?
“She been a special player to watch.”
Thompson recently became the first player from the Sumner girls soccer program to be named an All-American, adding to her already growing list of awards this year.
Not a lot of teams can say that a defender carried them all season long.
Sumner coach Robi Turley
Thompson will play in the fourth annual Girls High School Soccer All-American Games on Dec. 3 in Raleigh, North Carolina. Final selections for the game are made by the game’s director after input from an advisory committee made up of high school coaches from throughout the fall-playing states.
“That’s crazy as that’s something everyone always thinks about being an All-American,” said Thompson, who was named the Class 3A SPSL league MVP last year before Sumner moved up to 4A this year. “I would have never thought that would have happened for me.”
That’s crazy as that’s something everyone always thinks about being an All-American. I would have never thought that would have happened for me.
Thompson was also named The News Tribune’s all-area girls soccer player of the year, adding to her 4A South Puget Sound League most valuable player award as she helped Sumner finished in second place behind league-champion Puyallup.
“What we’ve done is something that has never been done before, and probably never be done again, and being successful at all those (classifications) is just crazy,” Thompson said. “I had a lot of real good memories .. like winning (3A SPSL) league titles after people didn’t believe we could make the move up (in classification), and then to come in second after moving up again. The games against Puyallup were always intense and competitive, and being able to hang with some of the top teams in state each year was something I will always cherish.”
Thompson will be attending Gonzaga University at the start of the new year, and she will sign her letter of intent with the women’s soccer team in February.
Being able to help reignite the Spartan-Viking rivalry after a 20-plus year hiatus was only one of the highlights of Thompson’s career, as is winning the 2A state championship in 2013 as a freshman, but none of the awards or accolades has amounted to the impact she has had — on and off the field — on the Sumner community.
“This is as much as a team award as it is my award,” said Thompson as she thought about her All-American selection. “I mean without them, I wouldn’t be the player I am. I fall down at least three to five times a match, and without them hustling to get to the ball helping me out or picking me back up, I don’t know where I’d be without my defenders and teammates.”
This is as much as a team award as it is my award. I mean without them, I wouldn’t be the player I am. I fall down at least three to five times a match, and without them hustling to get to the ball helping me out or picking me back up, I don’t know where I’d be without my defenders and teammates.
Perhaps it’s fate that the best player to come out of Sumner girls soccer is a defender; Turley herself played defense for the University of Oregon years ago.
Her motto has always been about building from the back and then letting the offense go to work.
But Thompson taken that notion to a different level of perspective as her efforts have led Sumner to three league titles. It’s been her efforts that have led Sumner into state-title consideration each and every year over her career.
“It’s been a privilege to have been able to watch her develop into the player she’s become,” Turley said. “Not just that, but the person she’s become. It’s been honor to watch her and continue to watch her going forward.”