Brooke Collins, 13, is an eighth-grader at Pleasant Ridge Middle School. She plays futsal and recently won the most valuable player award in an international tournament in Costa Rica. In this Q5, she talks about the sport and her international experiences as a member of the U.S. Youth Futsal team.

 

1. Futsal is an unfamiliar sport to many people. How would you describe the game?

Futsal is similar to soccer, but played on a basketball court. It’s 5v5 including the keeper. The game is extremely fast-paced and requires you to use more foot skills in a smaller setting than on a large soccer field.

 

2. What is it about the sport that appeals to you?

I love how quick futsal is. As a keeper, I am more involved than I am when playing soccer outdoors. My favorite part is playing fifth attacker, which is when I step up to play as a fifth field player for the advantage of possession or goal scoring.

 

3. What was it like playing in an international tournament in Costa Rica?

The experience was tremendous. Getting to play against another country was great because futsal is its own language. So, while competing, there is no confusion of what’s being said or done. No matter what, everyone is having fun playing the sport.

 

4. Playing in Costa Rica was your most recent international playing experience. In what other countries have you played?

My first trip was to Toronto, Canada, in December 2015, followed by a tournament in Medellin, Colombia, in July 2016. I was keeper for all three trips, voted as captain by my team and coaches in both Colombia and Costa Rica, and received MVP at the end of these trips.

 

5. What are some memorable events that you experienced in your international travels?

In Colombia, while sightseeing, our group had a surprise pick-up game with a school. There were probably 100 players on the pitch, between both groups, playing with one ball. In Costa Rica, we went zip lining, whitewater rafting and visited the beach. The best part is the friendships I have made.