Hannah Taylor is in the midst of a big week. The Meadowdale senior signed a national letter of intent Wednesday to play soccer at the University of Oregon and this weekend she’ll suit up for the Canadian national team.
Taylor, whose father is Canadian, will participate in two friendlies against Mexico to be played in Vancouver, B.C. The first is the Bronze Medal Celebration Match on Saturday at BC Place to recognize the national team’s finish at the Rio Games. The second is a closed-door match Tuesday.
“It’s crazy, to me, to be training with players I’ve looked up to my whole life and people who are my idols,” Taylor said. “Every time I touch the ball, I learn something new. There’s a lot to prove and a lot of work ahead.”
Taylor, a 5-foot-9 defender, joins Seattle Reign midfielder Diana Matheson as two of 26 players named to the roster. Taylor likely won’t play in Saturday’s match due to coaches wanting the Olympians to get most of the minutes.
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The lead-up training and matches mark the beginning of the country preparing for the 2019 Women’s World Cup and 2020 Tokyo Games. Next month the team will be in Portugal.
“Every camp, every tournament, you’re always fighting for your spot,” Taylor said.
Taylor was called up quickly after making her debut with the Canadian youth program last fall. She represented Canada at the FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup in Jordan and played for the FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup in Papua New Guinea. In order to participate, Taylor skipped playing her senior season for Meadowdale but is still on pace to graduate.
“I’m honored to get this opportunity,” she said.