Belton’s Dunnahoo readies for first season at MSU
By Tony Adams
Belton High School soccer alumna and former District 12-5A Most Valuable Player Carina Dunnahoo is still contributing in big ways on the field away from Belton.
Dunnahoo, who helped Tyler Junior College to a National Junior College Athletic Association title in 2011 and semifinals appearance in 2012, is hitting the pitch again. This time it is for her junior season at Midwestern State University in Wichita Falls, joining Jeff Trimble’s Lady Mustang Soccer program.
In two seasons at Tyler, she appeared in 48 games, with 46 starts, all at left back.
Her freshman season of 2011, she had four assists in contributing to Tyler’s NJCAA Division I National Championship and perfect 24-0 record.
As a sophomore, she had four goals and 13 assists for 21 points, helping lead the Lady Apaches to a 19-3-2 record and a NJCAA Division I National Semifinals appearance. She was tied for the team lead in started games with 22.
Tyler coach Corey Rose cited that Dunnahoo was a significant part of the team’s success, as she was one of the three captains for the Lady Apaches.
“Carina was a major part of our run to Final Four in 2012,” said Rose. “With such a big freshman class, we relied on our sophomores for leadership and composure on and off the field. Carina did her work in the classroom as well.”
Dunnahoo’s accomplishments are a testament to her will and status as the consummate team player.
“We won nationals my first year,” said Dunnahoo. “In my second year, we made it to the Final Four with only four returning starters.”
With Dunnahoo choosing to play at MSU over other schools, she wants to continue to contribute wherever she goes.
“I want to continue to play for as long as I can and at MSU,” said Dunnahoo. “Coach Trimble wins a lot. I am excited about the chance to help him out.”
“Corey (Rose) and I played together and are friends from college,” said Trimble. “He gave her a great recommendation. We are excited to have her bring her experience and talent here to Midwestern State.”
With MSU playing in the Lone Star Conference, they are affiliated with West Texas A&M. The Lady Buffs have another former teammate and Belton Lady Tigers standout in sophomore midfielder Emily Krenek.
“We probably won’t be playing directly against each other,” said Dunnahoo. “I am very excited to play against her team since they are big rivals of MSU. Emily is a great player and friend. I wish her the best of luck, but of course I am confident that we will win. We will just have to wait and see.”
“We are impressed with her ability to defend,” said Trimble. “But also with going forward into the attack. She has good speed and defending ability, plus is talented and comfortable with the ball at her feet. I know she’ll make an impact right away for us.”
Dunnahoo was a four-sport athlete in middle school, playing volleyball and club soccer while running track and cross-country. Her love of sports channeled into becoming a two-sport athlete as she entered Belton High School, playing volleyball and soccer. Her decision to play just one sport was a difficult one.
“I chose soccer as my main sport because of the huge time commitment required to play on club and high school teams,” said Dunnahoo. “There just was not enough time to do both sports and do well in class.”
The former Lady Tiger star knows that her time at Belton has helped gain her the strength and knowledge on the field.
“The Belton High School teachers, staff and coaches helped me prepare for life because they cared a great deal about my success,” said Dunnahoo. “Playing any kind of sport helped me stay focused and motivated me to stay on track in class. So between my family, the BISD staff, my friends and their families, I have had great support and I appreciate that so much.”
Regardless of the outcome of Dunnahoo’s playing career, this stellar Belton alumna has represented the community proudly and is a testament to the strength of the Belton Lady Tigers Soccer program.