Christian Foster is one of the best high school soccer players in the state of Kentucky. She’s so good at kicking that her friends used to joke that she’d make many of the same field goals that they saw netted by high school football kickers.
But they weren’t laughing when she competed in her first high school football game this fall and completed her first official extra point as a kicker.
Foster grew up a passionate fan of all sports and wanted to compete in every activity she played. With high school football thriving in the South, Foster said she always wanted to star under the Friday night lights.
Even though she was Bullitt East High School girls soccer team’s two-time reigning lead goal scorer, playing on the gridiron was basically a pipe dream for her. That is, until the school’s head football coach approached her with a proposition.
Coach Mark Sander needed a skilled kicker after his starter, also a member of the boys soccer team, announced he had prior commitments that would keep him from playing some games this season. Once Sander watched footage of Foster kicking practice extra points at the school’s powderpuff game, he was sure that he’d found the right candidate.
When she accepted his offer to join the team a few weeks ago, Foster became the first female football player in school history. Sander said she’s been a great representation of the athletes on East’s soccer team and has done a great job being a responsible dual-athlete.
“I would look at anyone that might want to (play football), if they’d be productive and the time commitment was there for them. (Christian) shows up every day we talked about that we needed her to show up. She’s there for the games and that speaks a lot about her character,” he said. “She’s just a real nice young lady with a bright future ahead of her. We know that she’ll be very successful.”
Even though she has to prepare and dress in different areas from the rest of the team, Foster says she fits right in well with the guys.
“My other teammates have celebrated my accomplishments but my football teammates have as well,” she said. “They accepted me with open arms, which was surprising to me at first, because I knew there was a chance that they wouldn’t have accepted me. But they celebrate me just as much as the soccer team celebrates me.”
While she’s been helping the football team kick extra points, Foster has also maintained her dominance in soccer. As team captain, she led the state in goals with 63 scored on the year. The girls’ soccer team also finished runner-up in the 6th Regional Championship game.
Foster is committed to play soccer for Eastern Kentucky University next year, but Bullitt East soccer coach Steve Gentry says, “the football coach might want to talk with her.”
Even if soccer remains her focus athletically, living out her football dream will be a memory she holds dear.
“The atmosphere is definitely my favorite part,” Foster sad. “I’m coming from a community that is based around basketball and football. There’s nothing better than being out on the field under the Friday night lights in Mt. Washington. Just being out there and seeing so much of the community come and support people that I go to school with, that’s definitely my favorite part.”