Unorthodox Hope

807 Words4 Pages
Anyone who has ever played soccer can tell you the “easiest” position on the pitch: goalkeeper. Especially in younger leagues, the keeper is almost always the larger, least agile kid. The common belief is wrong; it takes a truly tough athlete to dive face-first into the mud to save a ball. It is a job for the player who some argue does the most work for the least credit. It is definitely the place for Hope Amelia Solo. Born and raised in Richland, Washington into an unconventional family, she has made the field her home. Through all of the adversity with which she was faced, Hope conquered her battles with the gritty work ethic she was raised on; with a mind set on her future and a fierce determination to reach the top, she became the greatest women’s goalkeeper the game has ever seen. There was certain strangeness about the Solo household that was intolerable to the neighbors, especially the obnoxious yellow smiley face plastered on the wooden fence. Their front yard was packed with junk. “The neighbors complained, so my parents were forced to put up a fence to hide all our crap,” Hope laughs. “My mom didn’t like thinking the neighbors had won some kind of victory, so she painted that garish yellow happy face as tall and as wide as the fence would allow.” She admits, however, “The smiley face wasn’t a reflection of internal happiness.” (Solo and Killion 7-8). Gerry Solo, her troubled father, had a criminal past and a suspicious present. Charges of embezzlement, affairs with a minister’s wife, and calling in fabricated bomb threats were just a few of his latest stunts, all of which made Hope’s eyes roll. (Solo and Killion 15-17). Despite her mother’s protests, she and her brother, Marcus, felt he was misunderstood and knew his lo... ... middle of paper ... ...y family doesn’t do happy endings,” a girl born into a troubled family going through a hard time, would ever make something of herself. (Solo and Killion 1). She proved everyone wrong and does every time she steps between the posts. She made a life that most could never imagine through pure determination, a large feat for an underdog. Through her college experience, her professional seasons, and an international career that is still thriving, Hope has shown that pressure, and a little bit of patience, does indeed create a diamond in the end. Works Cited Gregory, Sean. 15 July 2011. Solo, Hope and Ann Killion. Solo: A Memoir of Hope. New York, NY: HarperCollins Publisher, 2012. Writer, U.S Soccer Federation Staff. n.d. March 2014.
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