eloise’s olympic dream on track

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A SCARBOROUGH girl who moved to the USA is on track to become an Olympic athlete after making great strides playing field hockey.

Eloise Irwin, a former Gladstone Road and Barrowcliff School pupil, left Scarborough in 2001 when her dad Phillip relocated with work.

And the 19-year-old recently made history when she became the first Robert Morris University student ever to be named in one of the USA Field Hockey High Performance squads.

The programme is the top level of the Olympic Development structure in the USA and includes Futures Elite and Olympic Development Select areas.

The programme is used to provide extra training and competition for athletes identified with the potential of one day representing the USA, and Irwin is one of those.

Eloise will have to take US Citizenship if she is to make strides towards the US Olympic squad, but she is just pleased to be making progress at the moment.

Eloise said: I took up field hockey when I was 12 years old, but started being serious about it once I was in high school.

“My coach at Jerome was Colleen Bender, her guidance and coaching resulted in my nomination and selection for All-Ohio as a junior which was a huge accomplishment.

“I view the chance to partake in the high performance programme as huge potential for growth as a player.

“The coaching staff is of the highest quality in the country and playing regularly with and against girls of this caliber should really help.”

Eloise’s granddad Derrick Arden said: “We’re all very proud of Eloise, not just for her hockey but also that her and her sister Emily are going to get a degree. They’re both doing really well and we’re proud.”