After starring for the U.S. Under-20 and Under-23 women's national teams and the University of Wisconsin over the past three years, Rose Lavelle will get the chance to impress at the highest level.
The 20-year-old midfielder, who finished up her junior season at UW earlier this month, earned her first call-up to the full U.S. national team on Tuesday. Lavelle was one of 28 players called in by coach Jill Ellis for the final four matches of the team's Victory Tour celebrating the Women's World Cup title it won in July.
The U.S. will play Trinidad and Tobago on Dec. 6 in Honolulu, Hawaii, and Dec. 10 in San Antonio, then close out the year with games against China on Dec. 13 in Glendale, Ariz., and Dec. 16 in New Orleans – the farewell game for legendary U.S. striker Abby Wambach, who has announced her retirement.
"I'm very excited to have the opportunity to represent the United States again and at such a high level," Lavelle said in a UW news release. "I think I'm most excited to have the opportunity to play and learn from such great players. They're coming off a World Cup title, so the environment, the training and seeing how professional they are is going to be something really great that I can learn from.
"Obviously, since I was little I always dreamt of this. It's a little surreal that it's actually happening. It hasn't really hit me yet. But once I'm around the team and in the training environment, I'm sure the emotions will start to set in."
Lavelle won the Golden Ball as the top player of the CONCACAF Under-20 championship in January 2014 and played every minute at the Under-20 Women's World Cup later that year. Since then, she's been a regular for the Under-23 team.
At UW, Lavelle has been a first-team, All-Big Ten Conference selection all three of her seasons and was the Freshman of the Year in 2013. This fall, she had seven goals and three assists for the Badgers and was the Big Ten Midfielder of the Year.
"We're really proud of Rose," UW coach Paula Wilkins said of Lavelle, who has 16 goals and 20 assists in 62 college appearances. "She's worked very hard for this, and it's good to see that all the effort she's put in is beginning to pay off for her. It's been great watching Rose learn and develop with the U.S. youth teams, so we're excited to see what's next for her now that she's gotten called up by the full national team."
All four U.S. upcoming matches will be televised: the Dec. 6 game kicks off at 7 p.m. on Fox Sports 1, the Dec. 10 game starts at 8 p.m. on ESPN2, the Dec. 13 game starts at 6 p.m. on ESPN2 and the Dec. 16 games kicks off at 7 p.m. on Fox Sports 1.
If Lavelle were to appear in a match, it is believed she would be the first UW player to earn a cap with the U.S. women's national team.