USA - August 14, 2021 19:00CL Twins make US team; to play in SpainUSYF selections reportCourtesy: The Friday Flyer

August 12, 2021

by Dawn Rankins

Thirteen-year-old Canyon Lake twins Payton and Presley Henry are headed to Spain in December to represent the USA in Futsal. The girls began playing the soccer-like Futsal just three short years ago and now, after tryouts in Kansas three weeks ago, they are on the US team.

Payton and Presley are the only girls on the 08s (their age group) national team from California, according to their mother Maggi Henry. The twins were two of 50 for their age group invited to try out for this chance to compete in Spain. After the grueling tryouts, they both were selected to the US team.

The girls are in the 8th grade and attend Thompson Middle School in Murrieta. Payton and Presley continue to play club soccer and both want to join and participate in high school sports while continuing in Futsal and club soccer.

Futsal is a game that is played on hard indoor courts, much like that of basketball. It is FIFA’s official indoor soccer game with two teams of five players, one of which is the goal keeper. The ball is smaller and the game is played with touchline boundaries instead of walls.

Both Payton and Presley agree, “scoring is more competitive on a smaller court.” The girls said that incorporating Futsal into their lives has given them much better techniques on the soccer field, a game that both have participated in for seven years and still love. The girls are both very passionate about both sports and want to continue playing.

Payton and Presley joined the Temecula Futsal League three years ago so they could acquire faster footwork skills to enhance their soccer technique. Both girls wanted the practice of scoring more goals, and faster footwork, not realizing that they would not only excel in the game of Futsal, but would come to really love it.

Payton plays the position of Fixo, which is the defender who plays in the middle of the field. Presley plays Pivot, which is the same position she plays in club soccer. The pivot position is also known as the forward or the topman.

Payton and Presley practice at least three hours a day every day on top of watching Futsal videos which help them do their drills at a faster pace then normal. The girls are dedicated to the sport and said they enjoy being a part of this journey together.

Payton said she enjoys working and competing with her twin and Presley said she loves knowing that her sister is always with her, especially when they travel somewhere where they don’t know anyone.

The girls said the only challenge they face while in school is getting their homework done so they can get ready for practice. Both girls have a 4.0 GPA and said they strive to be the best they can be in whatever they are doing, so they stay focused on the task at hand, no matter what that is.

“For me as a mom, it’s one of the most amazing things to watch these two girls have such a love for the sport and just keep wanting to do more,” Maggi said. “The training and the love they have for the game and their drive, It is so impressive to me. If their coach pulls them out of a game for a water break, they don’t like it at all.”

Posted by Luca Ranocchiari -->
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