Longtime teammates look forward to sharing collegiate soccer experience together

Jansen Hess, Sports Editor

Every Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday night, junior Brooke Zimmerman practices at the Overland Park Soccer Complex for an hour and a half. All those evenings of training and all those weekends of games and tournaments have paid off.
On Aug. 19, she verbally committed to play soccer at Missouri State University (MSU).
Zimmerman has been competitively playing soccer since the sixth grade as a right defender.
“I play soccer because it just clears my mind,” she said. “I just have fun playing it.”
Zimmerman said there were many factors that played into her decision to attend MSU.
“Well, I’ve been talking to them for a while,” she said. “I got a pretty good offer from them, I love the campus and one of my best friends is going there. I wanted the team to be good. I wanted to feel comfortable in the atmosphere and have a place that gives the athletes a lot of academic attention.”
MSU offered Zimmerman a full scholarship, as long as she scores at least a 24 on her ACT.
“I’m in ACT Prep to help me get ready for that,” she said. “I’ll just have to study really hard and keep working really hard.”
Zimmerman came into contact with MSU through multiple college showcase tournaments she competed in. Before playing in those tournaments, she emailed college coaches and asked them to come watch her play. As soon as the scout was interested, the coaching staff contacted her club coach.
She was also interested in the University of Kansas, the University of Nebraska and Creighton University.
Zimmerman said a weight has been lifted off her shoulders since she committed to MSU.
“I feel like I have a lot of pressure relieved,” she said. “It’s not like I feel like I have to not work as hard, but I feel more relaxed. I know I have to work really hard in school, but at soccer practice I just feel more comfortable and relaxed, like I don’t always have to be perfect.”
Zimmerman will be playing soccer at MSU with a former teammate, junior Makenzie Pfeiffer of Kearney High School.
Zimmerman joined Pfeiffer’s team four years ago. They played on Kansas City Futbol Club (KCFC) Futura Academy together until this year, when they made different Sporting Blue Valley teams.
When Zimmerman and Pfeiffer first met, it was upon the request of the Futura coach. Pfeiffer said he had asked her to get Zimmerman acquainted with the team, since she was considered the loud-mouth.
“I ended up thinking, ‘Wow this girl’s really cool. I definitely need to hang out with her,’” Pfeiffer said. “We ended up spending the entire practice together. I love her to death. [The team is] best friends now. We all just wish she lived closer to us.”
Pfeiffer plays right midfield and has played soccer since she was five years old.
Pfeiffer said her decision was more based on how well she would be able to adapt to college life.
“I love Springfield, [Mo.],” she said. “The soccer team was awesome, and the girls were nice and accepting. I also know a lot of people who are going there from other towns. I think it was mainly a comfort thing and knowing that I’ll have friends to have fun with. The coach also seemed really nice and I just thought it would be a nice fit for me.”
Although the scholarship amount isn’t determined, the school will be funding her tuition and books, so all she has to pay for is room and board.
Zimmerman said she is looking forward to spending her college years with one of her closest friends.
“Mackenzie is a lot like me,” Zimmerman said. “We’re pretty much the same person. She’s so fun and we always have fun together. I’m sure there will be some times in college where we get sick of each other and we want to kill each other, but I know it’ll be really fun because she’s one of my best friends.”