Two players. One family. One sport. As of this year, Brooke and Britney Weedman are once again playing on a team together: Gonzaga women’s soccer.
Brooke, a senior, attended a public school in Sammamish, Washington, for her first two years of high school. She then transferred to Eastside Catholic, where her sister, now a freshman, attended all four years of high school.
That was the last time they played together. Though they’ve been practicing soccer their entire lives, they rarely played on the same team since they are three years apart in age. They both participated in several other sports growing up, but nothing stuck with them like soccer did.
“Honestly, it’s always been soccer and that’s the thing that makes it so special . . . our lives have been dedicated to it,” Britney said.
Since they have no other siblings, it’s easy for the Weedman parents to support them. They attend every game possible and when the girls had matches at the same time, they would split up so each kid received encouragement.
If Brooke and Britney could’ve attended each other’s games, they would have. They said they consider themselves best friends, and no matter what they may be going through, they are constantly there for each other. The sisters take on life and all of its struggles side by side.
“They’ve had adversity and challenges, but they have fought through that together and are very committed to each other and all that they’ve done,” said Lexi Brown, assistant coach for GU women’s soccer.
Brooke and Britney have their fair share of fights, mostly because of their similarities, but they can instantly fix the issue and put it behind them. They don’t hold grudges.
“We’ll be fighting one second and then she’ll pop in my room [and say], ‘Hey, want to get dinner?’ and I’m like, ‘Yeah, let’s go,’” Brooke said.
Both Brooke and Britney have had the No. 5 on the backs of their jerseys since they started playing soccer, but with Britney’s arrival at GU, they could no longer share the number. Brooke remained No. 5, while Britney received No. 14. Britney had no trouble attaching some kind of meaning to her new number.
“In order to go to the tournament, we have to win 14 games … it’s always a big number on this team, so it kind of makes it special in a way,” Britney said.
Brooke didn’t choose to attend GU just because she was being recruited for soccer. She was comforted by the thought of being close to home, and liked the idea of a smaller school. She was excited to be a part of such a unique community.
After seeing her sister at GU, Britney committed to the university as a sophomore in high school. Soon after, she started watching her sister play and keeping up with the development of the program.
“Just watching it change . . . it gets better and better after each year,” Britney said.
From Brooke’s freshman year to now, with a completely different coaching staff, the team still continues to develop. At this point, with two years under the current coach staff, the girls are accustomed to the changes and a new dynamic has been established.
“Chris, Lexi and Josh came in my sophomore year and they’ve just completely changed the program,” Brooke said. “They’ve changed the way that we do things, our culture and everything like that, so it’s honestly been a great change for us.”
Though the Weedmans could be mistaken for twins with the same looks, same sense of humor and the same care-free attitude, they are two completely different people on the field.
Brooke is a center forward and attacking midfielder. She is a striker, but is also good at keeping her back to the goal and distributing the ball.
On the other hand, Britney is a center defender. She is not the strongest or tallest player, but she plays smart and distributes the ball with ease out of the danger zone.
“Brooke does a great job just helping us keep the ball and smartly can kind of carve up defenses, where Brit is almost just the opposite,” said Chris Watkins, head coach for GU women’s soccer. “Great defender, really smooth, distribution from 40 yards, really easy, strikes and connects her passes around the back as well as anybody.”
The sisters may be opposites on the field, but their similarities off the field create a familial energy among the team.
“Brooke and Brit are super fun to have around,” Brown said. “They are an interesting duo. They are always together and get along really well and are always bantering off of each other . . . their teammates love them.”
Neither of them has thought much about playing soccer in the future but would consider it if an opportunity arises. As a public relations major, Brooke is still unsure of exactly what she wants to do in the future. Britney has declared business as her major.
No matter what the Weedmans end up doing, they will always have their memories on GU’s soccer team and of course, each other.