Dec. 28, 2003

Notre Dame freshman women’s soccer player Jen Buczkowski (Elk Grove, Ill.) has been called into a post-Christmas training camp with the United States Under-19 National Team, with the 26-player camp to be held Dec. 27-Jan. 2 at the National Training Center Home Depot Center in Carson, Calif.

Buczkowski is one of 12 college freshmen among the invitees, with the other participants including 11 high school seniors, two high school juniors and one prep sophomore. The camp serves as the first tuneup for the CONCACAF Under-19 Women’s World Championship Qualifying Tournament, to be held May 28-June 6 in Ottawa and Montreal. The top two finishers at that qualifier will advance to the World Championship, Nov. 10-17 in Thailand.

Four of the invitees are holdovers from the U.S. squad that won the 2002 Under-19 World Championship. The current Under-19 squad also is slated to have additional training camps in January and March, an international trip in February and possibly a domestic international tournament in late April.

Buczkowski filled a primarily defensive midfielder role with the Irish in 2003 but is being groomed to play on the three-player back line with the U.S. Under-19s, alongside Virginia’s Becky Sauerbrunn (the U-19 team captain) and Portland’s Stephanie Lopez.

The other nine collegiate players at the camp include Stanford D Rachel Buehler, UCLA forward Bristyn Davis, Virginia D Shannon Foley, North Carolina D Jessica Maxwell, Missouri M Elyse Nikonchuck, Santa Clara G Julie Ryder, Florida State F Julia Schnugg and D India Trotter, and Portland F Angie Woznuk.

Buczkowski – one of 12 finalists for the Soccer Buzz Freshman of the Year Award – was a central member of the Irish midfield throughout the 2003 season, appearing in all 24 games (23 starts) while totaling four goals and six assists. She was named offensive MVP of the ND Classic after totaling 2G-3A in wins over ASU and Oklahoma and added a pair of goals in the NCAA win over Loyola Chicago.