Hannah Davison of Geneva picks Northwestern

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Growing up watching her older sister lead the Geneva girls soccer team to three straight regional championships, Hannah Davison dreamed of one day representing her school in similar fashion.

Davison’s sister, Stephanie, was a three-time all-conference defender for Geneva who went on to play three seasons at Regis University, a Division II school in Colorado, where she is now studying to be a physical therapist.

Davison is also interested in pursuing something in the medical field and has likewise used her soccer skills to secure a college scholarship, but her path has been different than she imagined. She eschewed playing high school soccer and instead plays club soccer year-round.

“It was a hard decision to make because as a little girl I wanted to play [for Geneva] and have everyone watch me, but choosing club was definitely the best choice for me,” Davison said.

The move paid off for the junior-to-be, a star defender for the U16 Eclipse Select squad that plays in the Elite Clubs National League, which is made up of the top 60 teams in the nation. Davison recently committed to Northwestern, where she will play alongside fellow Eclipse teammates Kayla Sharples of Naperville North and Aspyn Repp of Libertyville.

Davison, who has a 3.86 GPA, chose Northwestern over UCLA, Stanford and Michigan.

“It was really exciting to get it out of the way early because now I have a lot less pressure,” Davison said. “I was so humbled to know that the coaches were looking at such young [players] on the team. I fell in love with the environment and the coaches are great.

“When it came down to it, the academic side of it was something my parents have always stressed and that has always been important to me. I want to get the best degree that I can get.”

Davison also wanted to get the best soccer education she could and found it with Eclipse. The squad has compiled a 42-4-2 record over the past two seasons, including a national runner-up finish in 2012.

Eclipse was ranked No. 1 in the nation this past season before being upset in the Midwest Regional title match in Colorado.

Of the 18 girls on the team, eight have already committed to Division I schools.

“The environment on the team is a one of the greatest things I’ve been involved in,” Davison said. “We’re the most competitive girls on the field, which is great. But off the field we have fun. We have so much chemistry. We’re always pushing each other to make sure we improve and have good character.”

While Davison had to forego high school soccer and gave up basketball after playing on the sophomore team her freshman year, she has been able to experience the joy of playing a varsity sport at Geneva thanks to her track prowess. Davison was a state qualifier in the triple jump as a freshman, but missed the state meet this spring after suffering a stress fracture in her foot while jumping in April.

The injury also forced her to miss the final two months of the club soccer season, but helplessly watching from the sideline as Eclipse fell short of its goal has fueled her fire for the upcoming season, which starts with preseason training this month.

“We’re not happy with [the early exit] and it will push us for next year,” Davison said. “[Winning a national title] is a huge goal for us.”

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