Athlete pursues dream to go pro

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One of Dixie State University’s own student athletes is planning to go big or go home with soccer.

Jasmine Arollo, a senior integrated studies major from Glendale, Arizona, is raising money for the opportunity to become a professional soccer player with the Houston Dash. She is able to tryout now that her college season is over.

She’s raising money through the crowdfunding website, GoFundMe.com.

“I was trying to think of ways I could get money, obviously through working, but a faster way was through the GoFundMe account,” Arollo said.

Arollo said the money will help pay for trip accommodations to Houston. She said she’ll most likely leave in February, although the exact date for the tryouts hasn’t been announced yet. She set a maximum donation amount for her fundraiser, but the number is flexible.

“My GoFundMe account says $3,000, but $1,000 or less would be perfect,” Arollo said. “If I get that, it’d be great, but if I don’t, it’s not a problem. Just enough to get me by would be great. Anything helps.”

Arollo has raised $165 toward her goal so far. She plans to spend “every dime” on the tryout, but any leftover money will help her finish school.

In a Twitter message, Arollo said she has the chance to go pro because she has a strong support network.

“I believe in myself and so do my family and friends,” Arollo said. “If they think I have a chance, I should go for it.”

DSU’s head soccer coach, Kacey Bingham, coaches Arollo. She doesn’t know much about Arollo’s decision to go pro, but she said Arollo is a great soccer player.

“She did a great job at this level at our program Division II,” Bingham said. “She was named to the first team with PacWest.”
Arollo isn’t new to the world of soccer. The sport runs in her family, and she began playing when she was just three years old. Her siblings are also interested in soccer, and her dad coached her from the beginning.

Out of her siblings, Arollo is kicking the closest to a professional soccer title.

“I feel like I’m the closest so far in the family to getting to that pro title,” Arollo said. “My twin brother wants to go pro as well, but I haven’t seen him try it yet.”

Arollo said she’s trying out for the Houston Dash because she has a friend, Jessica McDonald, on the team. When Arollo realized she wanted to go pro, she named McDonald as an inspiration.

“I think it hit me when I was a freshman or sophomore in college,” Arollo said. “I wasn’t actually trying to go pro. I was going to just get my degree and see where it takes me. Since I found out my friend plays for the pro team, I thought I might as well try for it.”

Getting to the U.S. Women’s National Team is Arollo’s ultimate goal.

“I’ve always wanted to play in the World Cup because that’s, like, everyone’s dream,” Arollo said. “Getting there is obviously super hard and almost impossible.”

According to Elitedaily.com, the odds are 1 in 986 that a female college soccer player will get drafted into the National Women’s Soccer League.

Although she’s aware of the seemingly impossible odds, Arollo is not letting it stop her from trying. In a Twitter message, Arollo said people should donate to her cause because it will help fulfill her dream of reaching the professional title.

“Many people don’t get the chance or opportunity to go on a tryout,” Arollo said. “Everyone who donates gets me that much closer to reaching it.”