, and England on Thursday, July 20, while our fan base has doubled, thanks to our family and friends who have traveled near but mostly far to support the red, white, and blue. We love you!

"> Mission Log: Kristen Carr on Team USA Advancing to Gold Medal Game | USA Lacrosse Magazine

PHOTO BY ADY KERRY

U.S. defender Kristen Carr, who earned gold in 2013, understands that while they succeeded against Israel in the quarterfinals and England in the semifinal, the gold medal game is a whole new day.

Mission Log: Kristen Carr on Team USA Advancing to Gold Medal Game


Our new season has begun in a decisive 2-0 manner with big wins over Israel on Wednesday, July 19, and England on Thursday, July 20, while our fan base has doubled, thanks to our family and friends who have traveled near but mostly far to support the red, white, and blue. We love you!

Even though we are in our second part of season, being athletes, we yearn for our daily routines. For myself, and some of my other early-rising Club 4 mates, Taylor Cummings, Gussie Johns and Sarah Bullard, as well as a few others who trickle in (Ally Carey, Alex Aust, Alyssa Murray, assistant coach Jess Wilk and the one and only Lance Basler), coffee talk is the best way to begin our day.

On Thursday, however we stumbled across an unfortunate finding – the last bits of our Dunkin Donuts coffee (RIP) brought thankfully by our godsend, manager, Wendy Stone, and filled up our new and handy Ninja Coffee maker, also courtesy of Wendy. We enjoyed every last sip as we sat in the same seats from day one and chatted about everything under the sun.

Once our bodies were fueled with the breakfast essentials – oatmeal, toast, banana, and peanut or almond butter, whichever is fancied – we are ready to attack the next part of our day. Gameday consists of treatment, previous game review, keys to success for our upcoming game, pregame meal and rituals.

Quarterfinal vs. Israel:

We were excited to play Israel on Thursday, whom we have never played before. They had an exhilarating overtime win over Japan the day before and having a few familiar faces on their team from the states, we knew we would be battle-tested. They gave us a great game and we were amped to move on to the semis!

Next Battle: England, the host country:

Playing for your country is one of the most humbling experiences you could ever ask for, and for England, they were playing on their home soil. England has a grittiness and tough mentality about them and we knew they would be gunning for us as they did. They played an incredible game, but it was the USA that are 'ship bound!


Our record is wiped clean because the only game that matters is the one tomorrow – and the only game to be earned is the one tomorrow, because if what we did yesterday is still big today, then we haven’t really done anything.


So today, we have fully embraced our off day – Normateching, watching movies, and chatting with the best of the best, as we geared up for a little pregame practice. Before heading back to the dorms, Big Rick or Chief, as our fans refer to him, suited up and showed off his cat-like reflexes in a fun game of power finesse.

As the night wore on, it was easy to reflect on the journey, although the journey was not always easy – the amount of times we’ve exhausted our body, mentally and physically, the extra hill sprints, the early and late night training sessions to make us that more prepared for the pressure we’d be under in the World Cup.

It is because of moments like this, we did what we did. These are the moments you live for, to play at the highest level in the world with elite athletes that bring their absolute best every second of the day, consequently, bringing out the best in you. Because we did this, we earned ourselves a spot to play in the gold medal game of the 2017 World Cup.

Tonight, we made more memories, laughed some more, and ate even more, before we snuggled in our beds one last time, knowing our record is wiped clean because the only game that matters is the one tomorrow – and the only game to be earned is the one tomorrow, because if what we did yesterday is still big today, then we haven’t really done anything.

So, before signing off, I close my eyes with my heart full of memories, laughter, and love, mind cleared and at ease, and body ready to take the pitch one last time with one amazing group of individuals who have cultivated into an amazing team. I got your six. #BUSA

– Kristen Carr
(Instagram: @cristenkarr)








Player Profile

KRISTEN CARR

Nickname: Cookie
Years with the U.S. Program: 8
U.S. Senior World Cup Teams: 2013 (Gold), 2017
Position: Defender
College: North Carolina 2010
Honors: First Team All-American (2010)
Hometown: Baltimore, Md.
Current Residence: California
Current Career: Stanford Assistant

What does playing for Team USA mean to you?

I feel honored and humbled. There are many incredible players in our country and to be one of the final players selected to represent Team USA is a dream come true. This pride is felt every day and inspires me to be the best version of myself.




PHOTO BY LIZ ROBERTSHAW

Carr's favorite quotation comes from Aristotle that emphasizes practicing excellence at all times.


When did you start playing lacrosse?

At age 5 at Parkville Rec. Apparently, I had a lot of energy, along with my brothers, when I was younger and my parents needed us to burn it up, so they signed us up to play different sports, lacrosse being one of them. I remember learning the basics of lacrosse from my rec coach, Mrs. Jayne. She is great with kids and always had a way to keep it fun while learning the essence of being a good player.  

What other sports did you play in high school?

Soccer and basketball.

If you could have one song played after every time you score or make a big play, what would it be?

"The Show Goes On" by Lupe Fiasco.

What is your go-to pregame meal?

Almond butter with banana on toast. 

What's one thing that always puts you in a good mood?

Yoga! Namaste. 

What is something that most people don't know about you?

I have played semiprofessional in two different sports. This past summer, I played lacrosse for the Baltimore Ride, and in the summer of 2010, I played soccer for the Chesapeake Charge.

Was there ever a time you doubted yourself?

I have failed over and over and over again, and the beauty of failure is it has taught me more about success and being successful than I could have ever imagined. I am grateful for this perspective which has developed over time. Mental toughness is something I had to learn, master, and is something I still tap into. I have learned how to become more mentally tough through adverse situations and not getting what I want or thought I wanted. Learning how to look at a situation from an outside perspective when you are the one that is in the middle of it is difficult. Although, taking a deep breath and step back to look at the situation with clear eyes has taught me what is important in the situation and how to better attack it.

What one word do you think best describes yourself?

Passionate. When it comes to lacrosse, whether I am playing or coaching, I have an immense amount of passion. I want the best for my teams and hope to inspire my teammates and players through my play and coaching ability.

What is your favorite inspirational quotation?

"We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence then, is not an act, but a habit," said Aristotle. We become what we practice. If we are investing ourselves in something, we need to do so to the best of our ability. Even if we don't know how to truly do a task at hand, we have to act how we want to be. So, if we want to be elite at anything, we need to practice excellence at all times. 

Follow the U.S. women's national team as it competes for gold in the 2017 Federation of International Lacrosse Women's World Cup in Guildford, England, and the 2017 IWGA World Games in Wroclaw, Poland. This "Mission Log" will continue throughout both events with each player providing insight on their journey.