Get to know W-League’s New Jersey Wildcats player Kristin Hextall

By Anthony Caruso III
Posted: July 9th, 2009 at 10:31 AM EST

Kristin Hextall, a pro soccer player for the New Jersey Wildcats in the Women’s League, recently took time to do a Q&A session with The Capital Sports Report. Her interview is about her playing career and coaching career.

The Capital Sports Report: On what it’s like being Philadelphia Flyers great Ron Hextall’s daughter

Kristin Hextall: “Yeah, it’s been like this my whole life, so I am so used to it now. It’s something that I don’t look at as being different than anybody else. He’s my dad and it just happened that he went to work every day — as a pro hockey player and I got to watch him on TV. Then, he would come home at night after work, and he was still dad.”

New Jersey Wildcats

New Jersey Wildcats

TCSR: On what it was like playing for the Voorhees Lazers Club Team

KH: “Well, I had played for the Voorhees Club Team ever since I was 7-years-old. So, I’ve been able to meet great friends through the team. And many of them, we still stay in touch with each other.”

TCSR: On helping the Lazers to the 2002 Potomac Memorial Tournament Championship with another team

KH: “We had taken silver a lot, so we wanted to change our luck. So, it’s good to get the gold with that championship. We were pretty excited after winning that event.”

TCSR: On playing soccer for Bishop Eustace Prep

KH: “Bishop Eustace was great! I had played at Eastern (High School) for two-years, and it just wasn’t the school for me. So, I decided to transfer to Bishop Eustace and the soccer was much better. The main reason I went there was for a better education. That was good, too.”

TCSR: On being a member of the Eustace 2002 State Championship team

KH: “It was awesome. It was one of my best memories, because it was such a great team. We were like a family and I scored the game-winning goal. It’s something I will never forget.”

TCSR: On why she choose to go to La Salle University

KH: “I choose to go to La Salle, because I was looking to go close to home. I didn’t want to go too far away from home. Paul Royal, the coach, has shown interest in me and after he had talked to me, I had loved what he said, so he was a huge reason why I went there. And, also, I had wanted to be a nursing major; they have a great nursing program. It was close to home and I enjoyed the people that were there — both the people I meet on my tours to the school, before going there, and through my classes there.”

TCSR: On her Atlantic-10 All-Conference second-team selection freshman year

KH: “That’s a good honor. It’s great for my team to be recognized, and it’s always nice to get individual accolades. It shows people respect all your work that your putting in. It all paid off.”

TCSR: On her selection to the A-10 All-Rookie team and her immediate impact freshman year

KH: “I came in my freshman year really fit, in shape, and I think that put me apart from the other freshman girls. The coaches there were great and the girls were great. It was a good environment for me to grow and develop, as a player. I owe a lot of my accolades to them.”

TCSR: On being named just the fourth Explorer to get the NSCAA Third-Team All-Mid Atlantic Region

KH: “That surprised me, too. I realized I was just one of four players to get that after I received that honor. It’s a great honor, a great individual award, that I could put on my résumé. I am truly honored to receive that.”

TCSR: On her favorite college athletic moment at La Salle

KH: “I have a lot, actually. But, I would say my favorite college moment, was going to the A-10 playoffs in 2006. Many people thought we wouldn’t get that far, but we did. I remember scoring 2 goals in a loss to Fordham in the Championship quarter-finals.”

TCSR: On playing for La Salle head coach Paul Royal

KH: “He’s a great guy. He played professional soccer as a goalkeeper. He really made sure we had the details down all the time. He also had a great staff at La Salle.”

TCSR: On her role being a La Salle student assistant coach

KH: “It was great to go back and be with the girls again. I had a great experience playing for La Salle and I had the same great experience as a student assistant coach, even though my role has changed from a player to a coach. I had to separate my friendship with many of them, because I was now one of their coaches.”

TCSR: On her experience going from a player to a coach with La Salle

KH: “The biggest difference is not being able to play in the games anymore. But I still get to train with the players. I love playing soccer. But not being able to play anymore is the biggest difference and it’s not easy being on the sidelines and not in the game, but it gets easier to deal with as the season goes on.”

TCSR: On playing for the New Jersey Wildcats in the W-League

KH: “It’s been a great experience for me. We’re in about 3rd place and the coaches have bought in some young, talented players. Everybody gets along on the team, which is great. I have enjoyed my time on the team.”

TCSR: On the new WPS soccer team

KH: “It’s really exciting. It’s good to have another pro soccer league after the previous league had to fold several years back. A lot of the elite women soccer players are playing in this new league. They are getting paid a lot of money to play in the league, as their full-time job. It’s the best of the best and this makes it comparable to playing in Europe.”

TCSR: On what it would mean to her to play in the new WPS league for the New Jersey franchise if the opportunity came along

KH: “It would mean a dream come true. It would be amazing. Just the names of Heather O’Reilly and Yael Averbuch brings credibility to the New Jersey franchise. Everybody looks up to them and knows who they are. They have played on the biggest stage of soccer in the Olympics, which each soccer player always dreams about. They have already accomplished that.”

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