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L&C’s Rabale Named National JUCO Division I Women's Soccer Player of Year.

Article by: Pete Hayes, the Telegraph, phayes@thetelegraph.com

GODFREY — Two years ago, Boitumelo Rabale just wanted to play college soccer in America.

Thanks to Lewis and Clark Community College and coaches Tim Rooney and Ryan Hodge, Rabale got her wish. And just look at her now.

Rabale, a sophomore from the small southern African nation of Lesotho has been named the National Junior College Womens’ Soccer Player of the Year by United Soccer Coaches. She led all of NJCAA in scoring with 57 goals and 33 assists and helped the Trailblazers to a third-place finish at the NJCAA Division National Tournament last November in Melbourne, Florida.

“I’m so excited and very happy to win this,” Rabale said. ““When this season started, my goal was to be the top goal scorer, but I could not do it without our team. We had an amazing group and I love them all.

“A lot of credit goes to the team. We stayed together all year and things worked out.”

Rabale turned heads at the national tournament two years in a row. She scored a 50-yard bomb each year at the nationals, the kind of stuff of which highlight films are made.

“She’s hard working, had outstanding ball skills and has a knack of knowing where the ball’s going,” said Rooney, the head coach of the L&C women’s team. “And you might not think it by her stats, but she’s very unselfish. She loves setting up other players to score.”

Rabale becomes the fifth L&C women’s soccer player to be named National Player of the Year. Staci Dowdy won the award in 1996, Angie Bode in 1999, Kaylee Neutzling twice in 2008 and 2009 and Nicole Howard in 2015.

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