Clarissa Larisey talks about goals, grades, and great BBQ in Memphis.
Last season, the University of Memphis women’s soccer team won its first American Athletic Conference title. This year, star forward Clarissa Larisey and the Tigers are looking to make history again. “Honestly, with the start of the season, I think that we can definitely go far. We have been bringing it every game and every practice. I wouldn’t be surprised if we go pretty far in the NCAA Tournament,” Larisey explained. With a 12-1 start to the season, the team currently sits at #8 on the latest United Soccer Coaches top-25 poll.
Their success is not surprising, nor is the fact that Larisey is excelling up top for the Tigers. After 12 goals and four assists last season, she was named to the MAC Hermann Trophy watch list ahead of this campaign. Reacting to the honor, she said, “I feel so honored. I didn’t really know what it was until my coaches explained it to me. I thought it was amazing and I’m grateful, but I don’t feel any pressure. I’m just excited.” She’s backed up those lofty expectations with a stellar season so far, scoring ten goals already this season. If she continues on this trajectory, Larisey could one day represent her native Canada in international play. Describing that possibility, she said, “That would be amazing. That is my goal. Being from a small place, soccer isn’t that big. That would be absolutely amazing.”
With multiple appearances on the Dean’s List and the All-AAC Academic Team, Clarissa also holds up the student portion of being a student/athlete. How does she do it? “It’s honestly just time management. When I’m not on the field or in class, I’m trying to keep up with my studies,” she said. “We’re traveling all the time, and I’m either on a bus or a plane, so I just try to keep up with my work. School is really important in the end.”
Outside of school and soccer, there are a lot of other things Memphis, Tennessee has to offer. Clarissa said that she enjoys Shelby Farms Park, the Memphis bridge, and walking around downtown. Also, she has found happiness in one of the city’s most notable exports. “Oh, yes. I love the barbecue here. One of my favorites is Central BBQ, I have to admit. It’s so good,” she said. “We don’t have it (like here) in Ottawa. To be honest, the barbecue here is so much better.”
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Next up on the menu for the Tigers will be a Thursday night futbol matchup vs. Cincinnati. The match is set to kick off tonight at 6 PM EDT and you can watch it live HERE.