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North Dakota girl defies expectations on the soccer field, exceeds them

“Being the girl on the football team seems to be out of the question, but I’m definitely part of the team,” Moses said.

Moses, a student at Thompson High School, has been playing football since seventh grade. But she stands out for more than just defying gender norms in sport. As a 4.0 student and a member of the involved community, she has an impact on and off the pitch.

Her football career began in the sixth grade during recess, when she dared to play football with the boys. She took up the challenge and found it to be a lot of fun. Moses spent the summer convincing her parents to let her play soccer in seventh grade. Reluctantly, they agreed.

“My dad, surprisingly, was pretty much okay with that. My mom was a little hesitant at first, ”said Moses. “I think I’m a pretty good convincer, I guess.”

Six years later, Moses plays on the college football team as a linebacker. Thompson’s head coach Jake Schauer describes her as the ideal player. He said she works hard in the field, follows instructions and is open to training. Although she is the only girl on the team, she fits in perfectly.

“She works hard and she’s part of our playing team. There are a lot of coaches who don’t even notice that she’s a woman because she doesn’t stand out, ”Schauer said.

Over the years, Moses’ father became more and more concerned about her playing football, mainly due to the size of many players. His father encouraged Moses to keep getting stronger, which is not a problem for the athlete.

Moses, who has already spent a lot of time in the weight room during football season, has taken it to the next level. Last winter she began training to compete in weightlifting, and in her first competition in January, she broke the North Dakota state record in the clean and jerk of 20 lbs.

Thompson doesn’t have a powerlifting team, so Moses practices lifting alone. Her track and field trainer Dave Kurtz helped her create a training program, but if not, it’s up to her to stay motivated. She said lifting weights comes naturally, but the excitement of trying new lifts keeps her more motivated while working out on her own.

Her love of learning shines through in other areas of her life. She has a 4.0 GPA, is a member of the National Honor Society, is a student council member, and helps tutor other students. After high school, she plans to attend the University of North Dakota for aviation, which stems from a lifelong love of nature.

“I have always been fascinated by nature; I love to watch sunsets and sunrises. Looking at the stars is one of my favorite things to do, so being in the sky and being able to observe everything that is of that nature fascinates me, ”said Moses.

Moses said her parents pushed her to excel academically, but didn’t give them all the credit.

“I like to be careful, and like I said earlier, I like to learn things, so I think that has helped me over the years,” said Moses.

When not in school or playing sports, Moses volunteers with the Thompson Fire Department as a junior firefighter. While junior firefighters are not allowed to enter burning buildings, Moses trains with the service and helps at the scene of the fire with things like taking oxygen and tools and checking the fire. the circulation.

“There were times in the weight room where she got a call for a fire and she just sprinted out of there and went to do her thing. It’s pretty cool to have kids like that on your team, ”Schauer said.

For Eric Derry, Thompson’s fire chief, what stands out about Moses is his presence; even after a long day of school and practice, she shows up to calls ready to help.

“She is very energetic, ready for anything, a go-getter all you want in a child is what Ali is, ”said Derry.

Fighting fires is a family affair for the Moïse. Her father is in the department and her sister, who is three years older, was also a junior firefighter in high school. Moses convinced his best friend to become a junior firefighter with her, and she says they hold each other accountable.

“Anytime I can go to a fire call, I just drop everything and go,” Moses said. “Helping people in my community has been such an important thing to me, and this family of firefighters has become like a second family to me. “

Moses laughed when asked how she balances school, sports and firefighting.

“I sort of live from day to day. I take it as it comes, ”she said. “I like to do just about everything, so I take the time to do all the things because I love to do them.”

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