ST. LOUIS, MO - St. Louis Scott Gallagher is proud to announce that both the MO High School Girls and Boys Gatorade Player of the Year accolades have been awarded to SLSG players, Grace Bindbeutel and Christian Kraus.
Grace Bindbeutel, of the ECNL 03 Team, is finishing her sophomore year at St. Dominic High School. Due to the pandemic, Grace was unable to have a spring season with her high school team, but helped lead St. Dominic to a State Championship in the previous season with 30 goals and 16 assists.
When asked about her time with SLSG and how it's translated to her high school career, Bindbeutel said "I think the biggest thing I have carried over from club soccer to high school soccer, is the expectation of excellence on and off the field. Every time we train, play in games, or even in moments off the pitch, we are expected to perform and act to the best of our ability. Ralph [Richards] and Scottie [McDoniel] continuously set the bar so high, so that we strive to stand out. This has been such an important lesson in my life because it has helped me to become successful, not only in club and high school soccer, but also when it comes to my academics and character."
This award recognizes not just a player's abilities on the field, but also their academic excellence and exemplary character. "Grace is a coaches dream," said Ralph Richards, ECNL Director at SLSG. "She exemplifies all you could ask for in a player when it comes to living her life inside this club and our ECNL program. There is no doubting her qualities as far as technical ability, dynamic play in the final third and her persistent work rate. However, it is Grace's love for her teammates and the selfless acts performed over the course of the season to help in the pursuit of greatness for her team that make her such a special player."
To learn more about Grace, view the full Gatorade POY press release here.
Christian Kraus, of the SLSG 2001 Elite squad, just graduated from Rockwood Summit High School in Fenton. In his final season, he too helped lead his team to a State Championship, boasting 45 goals and 21 assists along the way.
SLSG Coach Denny Marschuetz was quick to recognize the work ethic and goal scoring ability of Kraus, "CK came to me at U18 as a soccer athlete, with no self-confidence, and not much ambition. So, he had to make a decision, did he want to become a soccer player? Specifically, a goal scorer? So he put in the work, gained a healthy attitude, ambition, passion, and truly earned everything he has achieved."
Christian reconized the hard work he had to put in, and gives to credit to several of his coaches for his mental growth. "At SLSG I had the opportunity to train with a handful of different coaches that each played a role in the person and player I am today," said Kraus. "It taught me the tough reality of playing soccer at the highest level in the St. Louis area. I leave SLSG a lot stronger mentally than when I arrived many years ago."
Christian signed his National Letter of Intent to play soccer on scholarship at the University of South Carolina. He will begin his collegiate career this coming fall. To learn more about Christian, see the full Gatorade POY press release here.