Abby Wambach will be honored in Lake Placid July 25. (Andy Mead/YCJ Photo)
Abby Wambach, who has scored more international goals than any other person on the plaent, will be inducted into the New York State Public High School Athletic Association (NYSPHSAA) this summer.
The Rochester, N.Y. native was among six people who were elected into the Hall. The other five were Persio “Andy” Capellan (Coach, Section I), Charles Engel (Coach, Section III), Tracey Fuchs (Athlete, Section XI), Ben Nelson (Administrator, Section IV) and Heidi Mann Vittengl (Athlete, Section II).
Wambach, whose full name is Mary Abigail Wambach, will be inducted at the organization’s annual summer meeting in Lake Placid July 25.
She just might may be the most well-known girls soccer player to come out of New York State.
A graduate of Our Lady of Mercy Rochester (Section V) in 1998, Wambach earned a bachelor’s degree from the University of Florida in 2001. She was a successful two-sport athlete at Mercy playing five years on the varsity girls soccer team and four years on the varsity girls basketball team.
In basketball, Wambach led her school to the Class A sectional championship and was named tournament MVP. However, it was soccer where Wambach forged her reputation and a successful scholastic, collegiate and professional career.
Among her high school accomplishments, Wambach was named the All Greater Rochester Soccer Player of the Year, Gatorade Circle of Champions New York Player of the Year, NSCAA Regional Player of the Year, NSCAA State of New York Player of the Year, and NSCAA/UMBRO National Player of the Year in soccer during her senior year. That year she also led her team to the NYSPHSAA state finals and completed her high school career with 142 goals, including 34 her senior year.
Wambach accepted a full scholarship to Florida where she set records for goals (96), assists (50), points (242), game-winning goals (24), and hat-tricks (10) while earning All-American and All-SEC honors in 1998, 1999, 2000, and 2001.
She was drafted second overall by the Washington Freedom of the Women’s United Soccer Association in 2002. Wambach became a member of the U.S. women’s national team, performing from 2003-2015. She scored 184 goals at the international level surpassing Mia Hamm’s record, and was 2012 FIFA World Player of the Year.
In 2015, she played a key role in the U.S. winning the Women’s World Cup. Off the field Wambach has made significant strides as an advocate for women’s rights and equal opportunity.