Ashley Flateland has tallied the third most minutes on the field this year for Tampa.
Most of it has been as a defensive midfielder for the Spartans, despite the fact that she grew up playing offense.
“I played forward until my senior year in high school, and then I started playing outside defender on my club team, which is what I got recruited for,” Flateland said. “But I like playing defensive midfield the best.”
Born and raised in Gig Harbor, Wash., the sophomore is the youngest of four children. She chose the East Coast over Portland State, Washington State and Boise State.
“My brothers and sister all went to college on the West Coast, but I chose Florida because it sounded tight and I had never been there before. I knew I wanted to go to a smaller school and when I came on a visit here I fell in love,” Flateland said.
After both her older brothers and older sister grew up playing soccer, Flateland’s parents signed her up when she turned six.
“I also played basketball and little league baseball, but soccer was always my favorite,” Flateland said.
Of the four goals Flateland has scored this season, two of them were game-winners, one coming in a 1-0 victory against then eighth-ranked Tusculum College, and the next in a tough regular season match against Nova Southeastern, giving Tampa the 3-2 lead and ultimately the win late in the game.
“I like being on the soccer team because it gives me something to work for. I love to compete and it gives me a chance to work with my teammates towards a common goal,” Flateland said.
When she’s not playing soccer, you can find Ashley at work, shopping, running or hanging out with her friends.
She also enjoys going to Starbucks and the beach. Although presently a biology major, she plans to get into a dentist’s program after college, which would include graduate school at some point.
In just two years here at UT, Flateland has already impacted the squad with her ability to distribute the ball and control the tempo of the game. With Flateland playing alongside teammates Courtney Evans and Marissa Mohammad, the team has a midfield that could certainly lead them back to the Final Four this year.