DURHAM, N.C. – One of the nation’s top defenders will join one of the NCAA’s top defenses in 2018, as head coach Robbie Church announced the addition of 105th-ranked Emily Crocco to the eighth-ranked 2018 Duke women’s soccer signing class.
A Midlothian, Va., native, Crocco joins the Duke women’s soccer program after a standout career both on the high school and club circuits that sees her ranked 105th on TopDrawerSoccer.com’s Top 150. Through her first three years at James River High School, Crocco was named First Team All-State and earned All-Conference honors each year as well. Her best year yet came in her junior season, as she landed Conference Player of the Year honors, along with First Team All-State, All-Region and All-Conference laurels.
Crocco’s club career has been spent with the Richmond Kickers and Richmond United. Crocco helped the Kickers capture four state tournaments and become State Cup Finalists from 2013-14, has been a member of Richmond United ECNL since 2014 and has been a part of the WPSL’s Richmond Strikers since the summer of 2016.
Her experience has also stretched to the U.S. Soccer National Team, as Crocco attended the U-16 Training Camp in 2015 and U-18 Training Camp in 2016. Crocco has also received invitations to the ENCL National Team Training Camps from 2015-17.
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Emily Crocco | Defender | Midlothian, Va. (James River HS)
Robbie Church on Emily Crocco: “Emily will provide our squad with immense toughness. One of the biggest things about her game when you watch her play is there is no fear in Emily. You just cannot say enough about her toughness on the field. One of her other biggest strengths is her play in the air, where she’s one of the best in her class. She’s not afraid to put a tackle in either. We see her playing as a center back or a holding midfielder and helping continue our strong play defensively. We also love how she keeps improving every year and we are really excited to have her as a part of the Duke women’s soccer family.”
Emily Crocco on Joining Duke: “I chose Duke because I love everything about it. I love the challenge it will provide in both academics and soccer that will push me to always be my best. Also, I love the family atmosphere of the soccer team and coaching staff. Finally, I chose Duke because I aspire to be an integral part of a team that I hope to help bring home several national championships.”
National Team Experience: Took part in the U.S. U-16 and U-18 National Team training camps in 2015 and 2016.
High School: Ranked 105th in the TopDrawerSoccer.com’s Top 150 … Named the 21st-best defender in the country … All-State, All-Region and All-Conference star at James River High School … As a team captain her junior year, was tabbed JRHS MVP, Conference Player of the Year and First Team All-State, along with First Team All-Region and All-Conference … Named Richmond First Team All-Metro as well … Helped lead her team to the regional semifinals … Earned First Team All-Conference honors her sophomore season after leading her squad to the regional quarterfinals … Broke onto the scene her freshman year by garnering Second Team All-Conference honors and leading JRHS to the regional quarterfinals … Named the Virginia Hall of Fame Scholar Athlete of the Year … Lettered in basketball all four years at JRHS as a point guard and shooting guard … Member of the National Honor Society … Selected into the Center for Leadership & International Relations at JRHS all four years … Four-time member of the Distinguished Dean’s List and four-time recipient of the President’s Award for Educational Excellence … Member of the World Language Honor Society since ninth grade … Earned the Rachel Carson Healthy Planet Award her 11th grade year … Three-year member of Mu Alpha Theta and two-year member of the Fellowship of Christian Athletes.
Club: Played for Richmond Kickers (2013-14), Richmond United ECNL (2014-18) and Richmond Strikers WPSL (summers of 2016-18) … Three-time ECNL Soccer National Team Training Camp invitee (2015-17) … Won four state tournaments and were State Cup Finalists with the Kickers … 2014-15 ECNL Mid-Atlantic Division Best 11 selection … Tabbed Potomac Soccer Wire Best 11 Players that year as well … Named ECNL Soccer National Team Training Camp Best 11 in 2017.
Personal: Born Emily Ann Crocco on Jan. 15, 2000 in Pittsburgh, Pa. … Daughter of Ann and Gary Crocco of Midlothian, Va. … Has two sisters, Abbey (20) and Grace (10), and one brother, Jackson (15) … Her father played football (1984-86) and baseball (1986-88) at William & Mary … Her uncles Dave Wiley (1984-88) and Steve Wiley (1989-93) also played football at William & Mary … Her aunts, Jennifer (Volgenau) Wiley (1986-90) and Sofia (Cedergren) Wiley (1988-92) played soccer at William & Mary … Volunteered in Special Olympics programs/camps throughout middle and high school and participated each year in Little Feet Meet (Special Olympics Field Day for kids) … For her senior Capstone Project, helped create Unified Basketball, a program which brings together kids with and without disabilities and teaches them basketball, teamwork and the importance of friendship … Participated in the annual Relay for Life all four years of high school … Frequent volunteer in youth soccer and basketball camps.