Over the past month, women’s soccer has taken the world by storm. With the U.S. Women’s National Team winning the World Cup, the popularity of the sport has been at an all-time high.

A group of local players recently got their day in the spotlight as Lufkin’s FC Nitro U12 girls soccer team took the field with the Chicago Red Stars before a recent National Women’s Soccer League game at Houston’s BBVA Stadium.

The Red Stars were taking on the Houston Dash in a league game, which took place on July 13. The day was a part of the Houston Dash Dream Team Experience.

The Red Stars feature four players from the World Cup-winning team, including Morgan Bryan, although they were yet to return from their recent victory.

“The experience is one our team will never forget,” Nitro coach Daniel Martinez said. “It was impressive how both the Dash and Stars players offered encouraging words to our girls.”

After the Nitro stood on the field before the game, they were able to look on as the Red Stars eventually went on to a 1-0 win over the Dash.

Both the team and players were excited about the experience.

“They are great role models demonstrating how hard work pays off,” Martinez said.

Members of the Nitro are Clara Wallace, Giselle Gonzalez, Alyssa Martinez, Jade Alvarez, Selina Caraccioli, Melanie Ray, Alondra Chavez, Elisa Silva, Danai Silva, Bella Ochoa, Jaslynn Martinez and Jadyn Garcia.

The Nitro is currently seeking U13 players, born in 2007, for the upcoming season. Those interested in joining may contact Norma Martinez at 225-8659 or norma.mrtz83@yahoo.com.

Josh Havard’s email address is