Padua Academy soccer star Paige Kenton has been named one of the nation’s best players as an Allstate All American.
The forward becomes the first Padua Panda to receive the prestigious honor, which recognizes the nation’s top 125 junior female players.
With a strong lineup of teammates, the Wilmington native has helped Padua earn state titles in two of her three years on the Varsity squad. (Padua has won the state soccer title six of the last seven years.)
One of her soccer coaches said, “Paige leads from the front on the soccer field. She brings energy to every teammate.”
From the pool of 125 players, 40 will be chosen to compete in the Allstate All-America Cup in Orlando, Florida, during the 2019 Major League Soccer All-Star Game. The Allstate All-America Cup will be televised on ESPNU, and all players will be honored on the field during halftime.
Four legendary U.S. soccer stars – Brani Chastain, Julie Foudy, Brian McBride, and Taylor Twellman – will be the official program ambassadors and serve as head coaches for the Allstate All-America Cup.
Upon hearing the news about her selection as Allstate All-American, Kenton said, “I am humbled and honored by this recognition.”
The All-American distinction certainly helps Kento make light of the ‘setback’ she faced freshman year when she was placed on Padua’s JV soccer team. It was her time on the JV team where Kento said she learned valuable leadership skills that would serve her well as she developed into a star athlete.
“I didn’t make the varsity team at first because I was not from one of the big and well-known club teams from the area. Instead of giving up or taking it less seriously, I treated every JV game like a varsity game, and I tried to perform my best every single time I stepped on the field. Through hard work and dedication to my passion for soccer, I was noticed by the varsity coach and was pulled up soon after,” she said.
“I owe a huge thank you to my Padua Soccer family. I am so grateful for the support of my amazing teammates and coaches. This recognition would not have happened without the tremendous dedication of Coach Joe Brown, Coach Mike Sheehan, Coach Shannon Sturdivant, Coach Matt Sturdivant and Coach Lyndsay Krapf.”