Next-Level Highlanders: Maddie Landers


Courtesy Photo

Maddie Landers tees up a shot against Dexter Southfield

Next up in the series is the Pingree girl’s soccer standout and Boston College commit, Maddie Landers.

Landers is also a part of the talented New England Football Club (NEFC) girls’ academy squad that has 14 other division-one-bound ballers. The Pingree senior racked up numerous honors this past season, including NEPSAC Class B Player of the Year, Eastern Independent League Player of the Year, Salem News Player of the Year, and the Boston Globe and Herald’s All-Scholastic team. Landers led the north shore of Massachusetts in goals this past season with 23 goals and 11 assists to follow. She also tallied a goal and an assist in the NEPSAC playoffs en route to the team’s second class B championship.

Landers began playing soccer at the age of 3 in her native state of New York. Her earliest memory was playing with family in the yard. When she moved to Massachusetts, she played for her town’s youth soccer team in North Andover. Her favorite part about soccer is competing against strong opponents and how it allows her to escape the off-field world. Landers said, “I love soccer because once I step onto the field, nothing else matters.” She described the hardest part of soccer as the general mental side of sports. She included that you need to be mentally tough to play soccer and control the pressure you put on yourself. Landers emphasized that the ability to learn from mistakes and keep a positive attitude is important in the game of soccer.

Over the winter, Landers attended two all-American events. In December, she played in the High School All-American Game with 43 other invitees from around the country. Landers and about 20 other girls represented the East region. Her team had a couple of practices before their spirited bout against the Western region all-American team. Landers noted that she would remember the experience forever and that representing the East was meaningful to her. She also attended the United Soccer Coaches All-American ceremony in Philadelphia the night after the National Women’s Soccer League (NWSL) draft. Two of Landers’ future teammates attended the ceremony and game as well. Landers mentioned that the events were a nice shared experience for the future Eagles and that they learned about each other and built core memories. Landers looks forward to playing with them next year and is excited about what the future holds.

On the recruiting side, Landers kept her options open. She targeted many Division I (DI) schools around the country, where she mainly focused on the soccer program as a whole and then the soccer program. Landers wanted to attend a spirited school with a decorated athletics program so she could enjoy watching other competitive sports around campus. As she narrowed down her process, Landers targeted the Northeast. She was considered a wide range of schools that compete in conferences such as the Big East, Atlantic Coastal Conference (ACC), Ivy League, and Patriot League. Boston College was the last school she toured during her recruiting process. She chose BC because of the strong soccer program and academics. Outside of soccer, the coaches and players were very welcoming as well. The ACC, the country’s top soccer conference, was very appealing to Landers. Landers feels that with the talent she will face, she will be pushed to be the best player she can be. Landers’ also participated in a couple of ID clinics at BC where she could work closely with their coaches. Although a big part of the process is individually advertising yourself, NEFC coaches Nick Burke and Doc Simpson played a huge role in Landers’ recruiting process. Also, Landers’ NEFC Girls Academy squad competed in numerous national showcases where they were given the opportunity to showcase their talents to spectating coaches.

After BC, Landers hopes to fulfill her childhood dream of becoming a professional soccer player in the NWSL or playing for the U.S. Womens National Team. While professional soccer is the end goal, Landers mentioned seeing herself as a coach in the future. As her time at Pingree comes to an end, the Eagles of Chestnut Hill await her June 24th arrival.