IT’S been a meteoric rise for talented sporting duo Amy Parkinson and Beth Lloyd.
In the space of a few years, the St Joseph’s High School Aberdeen students have garnered national honours in the futsal arena.
Now, the teenagers will represent the Australian under-18 side at the 2016 US National Championships next month.
The event is being contested at the San Jose Convention Center, in California, from July 14 to 17.
Scone’s Parkinson and Aberdeen’s Lloyd, both 16, fly out of the country in just over a fortnight on a trip of a lifetime.
And, the pair can’t wait to mix it with some of the best players in the world.
“We’ll have a week of training to prepare for the tournament, as well as some practice matches,” Parkinson said.
“Then, when the championships start, we’re expecting to play three games a day.
“It should be a great experience.”
The Year 11 pupils made their respective marks for Northern NSW at the Australian Titles in Queensland last October.
Their team not only won the under-16 crown but went through the competition undefeated.
National selection beckoned from there.
“We were surprised to be named,” Parkinson said.
“We didn’t know a lot of girls in the Northern NSW side, however we gelled pretty good, and it was a great result.”
Each of the youngsters is equally thrilled about their upcoming journey.
“To play for Australia, no matter what sport, is pretty exciting,” Parkinson said.
“We’ve got a great opportunity to go overseas and meet people.
“Apart from the championships, I’m also looking forward to the sightseeing and making new friends,” Lloyd added.
“We’ll be visiting Alcatraz, Disneyland and many more other places.
“I’ve never been overseas before.
“But, it will be good to have on your resume.
“We’re hoping to take our football as far as we can.”
Both Parkinson and Lloyd began their futsal careers at St Joseph’s.
“We started playing through school,” Lloyd said.
“Mr [Steve] Sokulsky introduced us to the sport.
“So, I guess, we have him to thank.”
Less than 12 months ago, Muswellbrook’s Sophie Morgan and Scone’s Mikaela Tilse, from the same school, were selected in the Australian youth squad to tour Spain and Wales.
St Joseph’s is certainly on the ball when it comes to futsal.