Heather Williams has been a star on the soccer field and in the classroom at Cal State L.A.
The 23-year-old scholar All American and NCAA Division II West Region Player of the Year graduated on Friday morning with a Bachelor of Science in finance. The hard-charging midfielder will be traveling to Europe to play professional soccer in the Swedish Premier League.
“I’m excited to have the opportunity to play professional soccer,” said Williams, who will be a member of Lidköpings FK.
She has come a long way since her days at Canyon Springs High School in Moreno Valley. She played four years of varsity soccer at the school and earned first-team all-league honors in soccer three times. During her senior year, she was named to the Press Enterprise’s second-team all-high-school team.
At Cal State L.A., Williams was one of the University’s most successful athletes. She played for the Golden Eagles for three years after transferring from the University of New Mexico.
This year, she helped lead the squad to California Collegiate Athletic Association regular season and tournament championships. The team finished No. 5 in the nation, the highest ranking in the program's history. Williams had six goals and six assists for 18 points.
During her stellar senior year, Williams received the Billie Jean King Award as the University's top female athlete. She also became the program's first-ever first-team All-American and the first Cal State L.A. women's soccer player to earn Capital One/CoSIDA Academic All-America honors.
Williams, who has a GPA of 3.53, was also named to the 2014 NSCAA Scholar All-America first team.
She was the only player from the NCAA Division II West Region to earn first-team honors on the 2014 NSCAA/Continental Tire All-America teams.
She credits her coaches, professors and teammates for an experience at Cal State L.A. that she will never forget.
"From day one, I felt so welcome here," Williams said. "I've had nothing but a great experience. It felt like it was just one big family."
Photo: Heather Williams had a stellar season for the Golden Eagles and will be playing professional soccer in Sweden. (Credit: Marty Bicek)
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Cal State L.A. is a university dedicated to engagement, service, and the public good. Founded in 1947, the University serves more than 24,000 students, and 235,000 distinguished alumni, who are as diverse as the city we serve. Located in the heart of Los Angeles, Cal State L.A. has long been recognized as an engine of economic and social mobility. Led by an award-winning faculty, the University offers nationally recognized programs in science, the arts, business, criminal justice, engineering, nursing, education and the humanities.
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