The U.S. Women's National Soccer Team, still riding the wave of this summer's World Cup win, plays in Columbus, Ohio, Thursday. It's the first match under new head coach Vlatko Andonovski.
Cincinnati native and Mount Notre Dame graduate Rose Lavelle, who won the FIFA Bronze Ball for scoring the third-most goals during the 2019 Women's World Cup, says the team is excited about having a new coach.
"It's kind of like first day of school vibes," she says. "It's fun, I feel like we're all in good spirits and we're excited for our first game."
While this is the first game and first training camp under Andonovski, Lavelle says the team is already looking ahead to 2020, which includes the Summer Olympics in Tokyo.
"He's been great. I think he's been stopping (practice) a lot of times and giving us different pointers. I feel like he's someone we're going to learn a lot from and I think it's kind of an exciting direction for this team to move."
Lavelle isn't the only Cincinnati native named to Andonovski's first training camp. Goalkeeper and Washington Spirit teammate Aubrey Bledsoe has been training with the team. Bledsoe is a 2010 graduate of St. Ursula Academy, where she won two state championships before playing and earning numerous accolades at North Carolina's Wake Forest University.
The USA takes on World Cup third place winners Sweden Thursday at Maphre Stadium in Columbus. Additional seating has been added to meet demand for tickets. The game kicks off at 7:30 p.m. and will be televised on Fox Sports 1.