Local soccer player helping team in freshman year

Mary Margaret Borden is a freshman who is not only adjusting to college life, but adjusting to being a starting soccer college athlete on the North Alabama soccer team, as well.

Borden has been playing the sport since she was five-years old, and she has not looked back since.

“I just started playing for fun as a kid,” Borden said. “The speed of the game and the competition is what interested me when I grew a little bit older.”

The Florence High School alumnus said UNA’s atmosphere and the success of the soccer team is what attracted her to the college. However, the journey has not been without its obstacles.

Borden said she spent the majority of her high school career traveling to get adequate training with teams and coaches.

“Playing with the highest competition and the best players in the South prepared me, as well as getting coaching from some of the best coaches in the state,” Borden said. “Once I realized and was told that I had a shot to go to college to play, I just continued to push myself and work as hard in practice, and outside of practice, as I could to get me to where I am today.”

Head coach Chris Walker said Borden is a hardworking and competitive athlete.

“She is very athletic and strong on the field,” Walker said. “This is helping her make an immediate impact and compete for playing time straight away.”

Borden is a business major and said when she is not playing soccer, she is hanging out with her friends.

In high school, Borden had many athletic achievements, including Times Daily player of the year twice, a member of the Alabama ODP State Team for three years, MVP for her high school for three years, most goals scored for two years, a state championship and state runner up with her club team.

“My favorite part about soccer is how fast things move and change as well as the competition you will run into,” Borden said. “Especially in our conference.”

Walker said Borden worked hard over the summer on her fitness. He said although she is only two months into her freshman year, she will be a great asset to the team if she continues to make the small steps like she is now.

“She is very competitive in anything she does,” Walker said. “She hates to lose. This is making her strive to become better and better each day, and become the best student athlete she can be.”

As a freshman, Borden said she is not entirely sure what her future holds after college. She it will most likely be a job in the business administration field.