Brazilian soccer coach kicks it at Lincoln

After leaving her hometown of Porto Alegre, Brazil just under three years ago, Lu Wentz, the new assistant varsity coach for girls’ soccer, is looking forward to her new adventure with Lincoln girls soccer. Wentz was a coach at Glencoe High School for the 2018-2019 season.

Despite being only 27 years old, Wentz played professional soccer in Brazil for five and a half years and then moved on to coach at a Division II school in Georgia. While she was coaching at the college, she was simultaneously playing in the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA). 

Wentz has a complex soccer background and, because she has played in the United States and Brazil, she noted that, in contrast to American soccer, common practices and play are different for younger players in Brazil. 

“[They] mainly play futsal until [they] are about twelve years old,” says Wentz. Futsal is small-sided, quick and a skill-focused game. Wentz says that, after many years of playing solely futsal, they play tournaments as well as other futsal games. In most of the United States, younger teams usually do not focus as much on futsal as Brazil.

Wentz has many goals for Lincoln. She hopes to leave Lincoln with “a much bigger impact rather than just soccer; we are mentors and that applies to multiple aspects.”  

Another goal she has for the players is to use soccer as a “time to turn their day into a much better one.” Wentz also believes that hard work will be the key to success. 

Wentz has found Lincoln’s soccer community to be very supportive. 

“The coaching staff is fabulous,” Wentz says. “I believe that makes a huge difference in the kid’s experience, not only soccer-related but life-related.”