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GIRLS SOCCER PLAYER OF THE YEAR: Ivey Crain, Pinecrest Academy

Ivey Crain's quickness to dash in front of her opponents to notch 61 goals, and her clutch gene to laser in the game-winning to win the Class 1A Private state championship for the program’s first title makes her the most dominant girl soccer player in the county. 

Crain’s mix-match problem on the field earned her the Forsyth County News Girls Soccer Player of the Year, and the athletic aspects of Crain’s game landed her the Forsyth County News Girls Athlete of the Year.

“It was great. I was not expecting it to be me. I know there are some people that deserve that honor. I just felt so humbled. Honestly, it’s the biggest accomplishment I received in my entire life, and I couldn’t have done it without every single little person in my life. ” Crain said. 

A two-time all-state selection, Crain amassed 155 career goals during her career in a Paladins uniform.  

My season was a journey; I had a great team to do it with and I don’t think it could have gone any better. My family, my coaches [basically] everything in my life kept me motivated to become the player I am today,” Crain said.  

Crain’s favorite game this season was the state championship. 

“All the work that my team put into the game itself by practicing. The day of we had a meeting in our coach's room then we walked to the bus and had the whole entire school cheering for us. We went to my house and had our pregame meal. We went to the field, and we were so determined to get that win. All that praise we felt after, how well deserved it was and how long we’ve been waiting for it,” Crain said.  

A game-winning goal is an unbelievable moment for anyone, but particularly for Crain.

“That goal was scored from Grace Fowler and it slipped right between the backline, and it was in the air [so] I ran for it right past the defender and barely touched it. That was in the first half, so we had to hold them the entire game. It was an adrenaline rush after and the best feeling in the world,” Crain said. 

The Paladins finished their season with a 19-2 record and 7-0 in 1A Private. At one point during the season, Paladins went on a 14-game winning streak. 

“I personally think because of the atmosphere that we had with our coaches and the entire team itself,” Crain said regarding why the season clicked well. “The chemistry was just on. The entire season class knew it was going to be our last year and that this was the year to make it happen. I think that’s why we were so successful.”

The University of William & Mary will be the next stop for Crain’s soccer career. 

“I’m going to walk in with my head held high and hope to help the team as much as I can and just give it my all,”  Crain said.

Alex Morgan, a player who plays as a striker for San Diego Wave FC of the National Women's Soccer League is an athlete Crain could compare her skillset to due to the style of play and the determination on the field.