Chelsea BucklandAthlete of the Year 2012 - Soccer
To say that Chelsea Buckland had a very good year over the last twelve months would be an understatement. Since July 2011, Chelsea has been to the FIFA World Cup in Germany, competed in the Cyprus Cup, led her Oregon State University team to a berth in the NCAA tournament, played in the CONCACAF tournament in Vancouver and will finish the year playing for Canada at the 2012 London Olympics. Chelsea grew up in North Delta and graduated from Sands Secondary in 2008. Even though she excelled in a variety of sports, her passion has always been soccer. Upon high school graduation, Chelsea received an athletic scholarship to attend Oregon State University to play NCAA Division 1 soccer. Following her performance at the January 2011 Senior Women’s National training camp, Chelsea was selected as an alternate to the Senior Women’s 2011 FIFA World Cup squad. Chelsea was also named to Canada’s team for the 2011 Cyprus Cup, a tournament Canada won when they defeated the Netherlands 2 – 1 in the final. She debuted on May 15, 2011 in a 1 – 1 draw against Switzerland. In June and July 2011, Chelsea was in Europe training with the Senior National team in preparation for the FIFA Women’s World Cup.
After her stint with National team last summer, Chelsea went back to Oregon State for the fall semester. Even with an injury at the start of the collegiate season, Chelsea was selected Offensive MVP at Oregon State Nike Invitational tournament, was twice named the PAC-12 Player of the Week, as well as chosen to the NSCAA All-Pacific Regional Team and PAC-12 All-Conference First Team. Again this year, Chelsea was the leading scorer for Oregon State as the team earned their third consecutive berth to the NCAA tournament. Once her 2011 collegiate season was completed, Chelsea joined the National team’s training camp in Sweden. John Herdman, the head coach, believes the camp was a turning point for Chelsea and praises her ability to generate plays with the other forwards. Chelsea recorded her first international goal on November 22 in a match against Sweden. In December 2011, Chelsea was named to the team for the 2012 CONCA- CAF Olympic Qualifying tournament. Chelsea played in all three group games during the CONCACAF tournament in January 2012. Since becoming a member of the Senior Women’s National team, Chelsea has made twelve international appearances.
Chelsea has been added to the Vancouver Whitecaps FC 2012 roster, playing and scoring in their season opener on May 13,2012. She is currently taking part in the residency camp in Vancouver as the Canadian team prepares for the 2012 Olympics in London. Chelsea’s mental and physical toughness and competitive nature make her an asset to every team she plays on. We wish Chelsea well as she competes in the 2012 London Olympics and in her future athletic and academic endeavours.