January 14, 2013
By Charles Cuttone
RIGHT AT HOME
O’Reilly looking forward to new season in new league with Breakers
Boston might not be New Jersey, but for U.S. National Team and Boston Breakers midfielder Heather O’Reilly, it’s now home.
|Heather O’Reilly hails from New Jersey, but Boston is home for her now, and playing for the Boston Breakers “sort of fit with my life right now.”
Linda Cuttone/Sports Vue Images
The native of East Brunswick NJ, who played three seasons with Sky Blue in Women’s Professional Soccer, was one of seven players assigned to the Breakers last Friday.
"I love New Jersey,” she said. “Playing back there with Sky Blue FC was such a thrill. It was so close to my hometown. I got to see so many of my former coaches and teammates. I owe New Jersey a ton of credit developing me into the player I am."
But O’Reilly has been living in Boston since she married her long-time boyfriend, who is completing his education at Harvard.
“Being up here sort of fit with my life right now,” she said. And this won’t be her first experience with the Breakers, after signing with the team for last year’s WPSL Elite season.
"My experience with the Breakers, although brief, was very enjoyable,” she said. “I enjoyed the fans, the coaching staff. It'll be hard to play Sky Blue this season. I had a lot of great times there. (Having played for the Breakers) will make my transition a bit easier. I only played a few games, but I definitely got a sense of what this organization is about. Dilboy Stadium is a fantastic venue, an intimate venue. I think the players will enjoy their experience there."
The allocation of players by the NWSL on Friday reunites her with a couple of U.S. National team teammates, Heather Mitts and Sydney Leroux.
She says both should be a good fit for the Breakers.
"Syd, although coming off the bench (for the U.S.), she pumped in 12 goals. That was all off the bench! I'm really proud of Syd as a player. She's handled herself very well on and off the field. And, she's entertaining."
"Heather Mitts is somebody who is just the perfect teammate. She's always going to be fit. She's always going to be ready to go. She provides so much to the team environment."
But the other players assigned to the Breakers, Canadian forward Rhian Wilkinson, Adriana Leon, a 20-year-old forward who is currently in China with Canada’s senior women's team, Mexican internationals Anisa Guajardo, a forward, and keeper Cecilia Santiago are no strangers to O’Reilly either.
"It's an interesting dynamic. I can't even guess how many games I've played against (Rhian) Wilkinson (one of Boston's players from Canada) on the National Team. I'm excited to have her on my side this time."