Bensonhurst teen kicks it up a notch

December 30, 2011 Denise Romano
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Lauraashley Pfeifer knows how to get her kicks.

The 17-year-old Bensonhurst resident has been playing soccersince she was five, and recently led her team to the firstchampionship in its history.

Pfeifer began playing with the Parkville Youth Organization, butat 15 joined the team at her school – Telecommunications HighSchool for Art and Technology. She became team captain this pastsummer.

When I first started playing with the team, we kind of lookedlike the Bad News Bears, Pfeifer recalled. The only way we won agame was when the other team would forfeit. We started coming up inmy junior year and then in my senior year we got better.

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Practice does make perfect. We started practicing in August,every single day for about two and half hours. We continuedpracticing during the school year, she said.

In 2011, Pfeifer led her team to the school’s first ever PublicSchools Athletic League (PSAL) championship. She gives credit toParkville for teaching her all she knows about the game. We playedin sweltering hot summer days and ridiculously cold nights – thismade it all worthwhile.

Pfeifer has a pretty hectic schedule. She was student of themonth this November and her grade point average has ranked in thetop 20 of her class all four years. The energetic teen is alsoinvolved in the Junior Achievements Club, which goes to elementaryschools and teaches younger kids about community service, as wellas the Contemporary World Issues Club. That club is sponsored byTufts University and travels to Boston for three days to debate ona specific issue.

Pfeifer is also an asthmatic. It never stopped me from playing.I actually wrote one of my college essays about it – it’s one ofthe biggest risks you can take in life.

Pfeifer submitted her college applications a few weeks ago toAdelphi, Macaulay Honors College at the City University of NewYork, Pace, St. John’s, St. Joseph’s and Marymount Manhattan. Ialso registered with the NCAA and NCSA to see if they would take mefor soccer in college, as well, Pfeifer said, adding that shewants to be a speech pathologist.

Pfeifer and her team were honored at Yankee Stadium on December6 with other PSAL champions. My coach, Charles Young, has so muchpatience with us girls. He had so much faith in us and never gaveup, she said, adding that it was exciting to walk on the field atthe stadium. I would like to thank my coaches from Parkville, SkipDurante and my dad Robert Pfeifer, for your encouragement and allthe screaming and yelling – instructional criticism. It got to mebut helped me in a lot of ways.

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