Oct. 4, 2017
by Tony Jones
NOTRE DAME, Ind. — University of Notre Dame men’s soccer freshman forward/midfielder Paul Rothrock is one of 20 players that have been called into United States Under-18 Men’s National Team camp, and is set to travel to Marbella, Spain to train and compete in a pair of international friendlies over the next week.
Rothrock, who was on the sideline with his Notre Dame teammates during Tuesday’s 2-1 overtime win against Northwestern at Alumni Stadium, will now depart to join the US U18 MNT in Spain. The current national team camp has been underway since Oct. 1, and features friendly matchups with Belgium on Oct. 5 and Russia on Oct. 9.
“It’s a great opportunity for Paul, he’s a tremendous young talent coming through,” Notre Dame head coach Bobby Clark said. “He had a tremendous last spring with the Seattle Sounders (U18), took the Sounders to the final four of the development academy playoffs. They lost narrowly in the semifinals but won the third/fourth playoff. He had a really good spring last year and I think this is a nice reward coming from that. It gives the international selecting group an opportunity to see him at that level.”
Rothrock joins a host of Notre Dame players who have competed on the international stage. Along with youth national team members for the U.S. that have included Chad Riley (’04), Justin Detter (’04), Greg Martin (’04), Jack Stewart (’05), Greg Dalby (’07), Brendan King (’12), Aaron Maund (’12) and Dillon Powers (’13), numerous Notre Dame players have added caps on the senior national team level. Both Matt Besler (’09) and Justin Morrow (’10) most recently appeared earlier this season for the full USMNT, while Tony Capasso (’97) for Canada, Kevin Richards (’04) for Bermuda, Joseph Lapira (’08) for Ireland and Bright Dike (’09) for Nigeria also previously competed at the highest level for their respective nations.
Despite not yet appearing in an official game during his debut season, Rothrock is a highly-touted prospect in the Notre Dame class of 2021. The Seattle, Washington, native was most recently a standout for the Seattle Sounders U17/18 Academy on the club circuit, totaling 10 goals for the Sounders during the 2016-17 academy season. Along with his time spent with Seattle United, Rothrock’s club career included twice appearing in the national finals, while earning a pair of regional championships, two state championships and a Dallas Cup title.
A multi-time all-state selection at Lakeside School during his high school career, Rothrock tallied 33 goals and 43 assists as both an attacking midfielder and winger. Lakeside School claimed three Metro Championships during Rothrock’s tenure.
Tony Jones, athletics communications assistant director at the University of Notre Dame, has been part of the Fighting Irish athletics communications team since 2012 and coordinates all media efforts for the Notre Dame softball and men’s soccer programs. A native of Jamestown, New York, Jones is a 2011 graduate of St. Bonaventure University, and prior to arriving at Notre Dame held positions at the University of Louisiana Monroe and with the National Football League’s Buffalo Bills.