Gretta Kriekard has learned so many lessons through soccer


Greta Kriekard

A selfie of Greta

Like many kids, freshman Gretta Kriekard’s story starts off with being forced into a sport at a young age by her parents. It wasn’t particularly a decision she had many opinions on at the ripe age of three, but it was a choice that would set the scene for the rest of her life. 

“My parents forced me to play soccer for AYSO,” said Gretta. “They signed me up when I was really young, and I wasn’t really aware what was happening, but I’ve just stuck with [soccer] ever since.”

Bouncing from one sport to another to find her niche isn’t something Gretta has ever had to experience. The feeling she achieves every time she steps on the field is unmatched, and how it aids her in different situations is why she has never ceased playing. 

“I feel like playing soccer helps me in many different ways,” Gretta said. “It’s especially helped my mental health because soccer gives me a team to bond with, and I know I can rely on them for anything. Some of my oldest friends I [have] met through AYSO, one of them being [freshman] Grace Berlin. We were on the same soccer team together, and we pretty much have just known each other ever since. [Freshman] Lauren Coon is someone else I’ve met through soccer, and I’ve known her for a really long time. We met through AYSO when we were little, so I’ve known her forever.”

Although teams switch up and change every year, Gretta still seems to find that family element within the people surrounding her. Finding lifelong friends through a sport and creating exciting memories with them is something Gretta loves doing. She may have many different stories and adventures with her teammates, but there is one that sticks out to her more than anything.

Soccer also helps my drive for being successful, especially in school, and makes me want to be better in everything that I do.

— Gretta Kriekard

“One time,” Gretta said, “we were at a tournament in Detroit, and we went into the pool and jumped in with all of our clothes on. Almost the whole entire team did, and then after, we were running around the hotel sopping wet and drenched in water.”

In addition to being the friend jackpot, soccer has also taught Gretta a lot of life lessons. Things like work ethic, dedication, and physical fitness are ideas that she’s learned and mastered throughout the years, all due to a sport involving putting a ball inside a net. 

“Obviously,” Gretta said, “it has helped me build a lot of healthy friendships over the years, but [it] also gives me motivation to really work hard and stay in shape which helps with my health. Soccer also helps my drive for being successful, especially in school, and makes me want to be better in everything that I do.”