Hall leading by example
Published: Tuesday, October 9, 2012
Updated: Friday, May 17, 2013 13:05
Storming onto the scene back in 2009, senior midfielder, Tess Hall has become a dominant force on the soccer field both at UTEP and in Conference USA.
A three-year letter winner, the California native is a dynamic player.
Since her time as a freshman, Hall has scored 18 goals and completed 24 career assists, while starting in 61 out of 64 career matches. She currently leads the team with seven scores and eight assists.
“My strengths as a player revolve around quick passes and how I set up the ball for my teammates,” Hall said. “Almost like a quarterback, I focus on getting everyone set up and read the plays that present themselves on the field.”
Aside from prevailing on the field, Hall has also maintained a strong presence in the classroom as she boasts a 4.0 GPA, earning her the title of a Scholar-Athlete and a spot on the High Honor Roll every semester.
A decorated player, Hall has earned many honors such as All C-USA Third Team, C-USA Offensive Player of the Week, C-USA Co-Offensive Player of the Week and three consecutive C-USA Academic Medals Winner.
“She is like a ‘lead by example’ type person,” head coach Kevin Cross said. “She does not say a whole lot but everything she does is first class. She came in as a starter and has developed into just a solid player. She is now a leader on this team and is definitely a difference maker.”
Both of her parents being athletes, it was only a matter of time until Hall found her way to a sport. However, it was never expected for that sport to be soccer.
“Between both of my parents, they played every major sport except soccer and ice hockey, which turned out to be the two sports that I just love,” Hall said. “It was quite funny actually. My parents were so confused as they knew nothing about soccer. I think it was a flyer at my preschool that was advertising a soccer league that brought my attention to the sport, and I just remember being really excited and really wanting to play. I guess you could say it was kind of instinctively in me.”
Hall got her start at the early age of 3, when she joined an all boys team. The only girl out on the field until the age of 12, Hall became very technically strong as she worked on developing her physical ability to match that of her male teammates.
“They were so fast and would not slow anything down or go easy on me just because I was a girl,” Hall said. “Because of it I learned to be really tough in that manner and learned how to get my quick touches, and finish strong because I was not as fast or as strong as them so I had to make it up with ball skill.”
Playing competitively all her life, Hall has experienced many moments on a soccer field, but said that the most memorable involves her UTEP family and the team’s chance for the 2011 C-USA title.
“The conference tournament last year was definitely a huge moment for me,” Hall said. “We came in as the underdog and then to win those first two games, make it to finals and go as far as we did against Memphis. No, we did not win but just to know that every single girl gave it their all, and battled, I could walk off that field knowing we left it all out there and I was very proud of all of us.”
Audrey Westcott may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.