Lydia Rice is a junior from Tupelo, Mississippi majoring in Spanish at Birmingham-Southern. Although a junior, Lydia is entering only her second year of competition due to an ACL injury during her sophomore campaign. As a freshman, in 2006 Lydia was a standout player for the Panthers. She was named First-Team All-Big South Conference and Big South All-Freshman. She played and started in all 18 games, recording one assist and helped the Panther defense to six shutouts. As a sophomore, she sat out due to injury but was still voted by her teammates as a captain. Now in her junior season, she again is a team captain and the vocal leader for the defense.
Served as co-captain of the varsity squad at Tupelo High School as a sophomore, junior, and senior, and named team MVP those three seasons ... helped lead the squad to the State 5A title in 2003, 2004, and 2006, and was named MVP of the tournament as a senior in 2006 ... earned All-Area honors and was named Player of the Year by the Northeast Mississippi Daily Journal ... played in the Mississippi Association of Coaches North-South All-Star Game as a senior ... named Miss Soccer Mississippi by the Clarion Ledger as a senior ... named Defensive MVP her freshman year ... earned First-Team All-State honors as a freshman, sophomore, and junior ... played for the Mississippi United club team, which won the 2006 state championship, was ranked 10th in the nation in the U-17 ranks in 2005, and was a finalist in the U.S. Youth Soccer Association Region III Tournament in Plano, Texas, in June 2005 ... the club squad was also the Premier League Champion in 2004 ... graduated at the top of her class and was a National Merit Semifinalist in 2005 and a finalist in 2006 ... was a Lindy Callahan Scholar Athlete ... was a Rotary Scholar from 2003-2005 ... Honor Roll member every semester ... Who's Who Among American High School Students ... received the American Legion Award as well as several other academic honors.
Getting to Know Lydia:
Home Town: Tupelo, MS
High School: Tupelo HS
Mom & Dad: Rob and Linda Rice
Club Team: Tupelo Futbol Club; Mississippi United
Club Accomplishments: State Champs in 2005 and 2006; Region III Finalist in 2005
Favorite Food: Lasagna
Favorite Music: Country
Favorite Color: Red
Favorite Quote: “Your vocation is the intersection where your deepest gladness meets the world’s deepest need.” – Frederick Bo
How old were you when you started playing soccer? I was seven.
What is your funniest soccer moment? “I was in the 3rd grad and I swung and missed at a ball and took this girl’s legs out. The ref blew his whistle and called me over, taking out the cards to give me my first ever yellow. Sniffling and thinking the world had ended I went over; when he asked my number I gave him my telephone number instead of my jersey number.”
What is your most memorable soccer moment? Making it to the finals at Region iII Regionals
Career Goals: Probably Nursing
What is your favorite place visited and why? “Argentina because I got to spend three weeks there and study Spanish and see the range of natural beauty.”
What has been the funniest team moment this year? “One of our freshmen goalkeepers, Amber Hernandez, busted out this loud hilarious cheer right in the middle of warm-ups during preseason that took the entire team by surprise. Hilarious!”
What was your most memorable game in your BSC career thus far? “In 2006 we defeated UAB at home. It was the first time in our program’s history that we had beat them.”
What are your thoughts about 2008 BSC Soccer: I really enjoy these guys. We are really becoming a team. I am looking forward to continuing to get better and capitalize on this team’s character.”