There are not many good reasons to miss a chance to play for a national championship, but a chance to play for the United States Women's National team is one of them.
"It is bittersweet for me because I committed to the national team before learning about going to nationals," said Michelle Xiao of Gretna Soccer Club.
While the Gretna Soccer Club U-18 girls compete for a national championship, Xiao will compete at the U-18 USWNT training camp in Mexico.
"She has always been a special player," Gretna Coaching Director Digger Hawkins said. "She has a special left foot. Sometimes in the game of soccer a special left foot is like gold dust."
Earlier this year Xiao helped the U-17 USWNT team win the NTC invitational.
"The international games they are just on a different level. The walkouts we go walkout to the field to the fifa song and the national anthems. The speed of play is so much faster and you get to learn from the best and play with the best," Xiao said.
Moving up to the U-18 team has Xiao one step closer to her goal.
"That is definitely my dream to be on the full national team an play in the Olympics and the World Cup," Xiao said. "I am just going to work little steps at a time, progress through the levels and hopefully one day I will be there."