Alumni Spotlight Series: Eden Jones kicking it up at UCO

 

Eden Jones, Reagan’s class of 2019, made her mark as a Rattler as a three-year varsity letterman, 2019 team captain, and member of the 2019 Express News All-Area team, among many other region and district accolades. Eden now is a center midfielder on the women’s soccer team at the University of Central Oklahoma (UCO), where she’ll be a sophomore majoring in Professional Media.  We caught up with her to hear more about her HS and college experiences.

Q: What has been your most exciting moment on the field at UCO?
A: My favorite college memory, so far, would have to be winning the MIAA conference tournament my freshman year. We won it the year before, so there was a lot of pressure to do it again. Being able to go out, play in the championship game from start to finish and leave it all on the field with my team really reminded me how blessed I am to play the sport I love. 

Q: What is the biggest difference between playing high school and collegiate sports?
A: The speed of play, mentally and physically, is way faster in college. The competition level is higher, and your fitness and preparation is stressed more. If you’re not ready, it will be obvious. You have to be self-accountable, responsible and make sure you’re taking care of yourself. It’s also important to have a team mentality and work hard no matter what.

Q: Which Reagan tradition meant the most to you?
A: The annual Ian’s Cup game versus Johnson. That game is one where everyone feels the pressure and wants to do the best they can. I feel like that game emulates the college level. It was also fun to see two schools come together with the energy of the crowd and play some good soccer.

Q: What has your experience been like during the COVID-19 shutdown?
A: I’ve definitely had to learn how to be more self motivated. The expectations are higher because our season has been altered, which means every game and practice counts. I’ve set realistic goals for myself and have had to lay out a strict workout schedule which will help ensure my team’s success.

Q: What is your message to current Rattlers about competing at the next level?
A: Don’t be complacent and don’t be scared. If you want something, work for it and get it. Whatever you do, don’t settle for mediocrity. Always push to be better, because there is no such thing as “too good.”

Thank you Eden and best wishes for continued success back at UCO!

You can follow Eden at @UCOSoccer!#RollChos