Bethesda SC forward headed to Miami (Fla.)

RELATED LINKS: ESPNHS Recruiting Central | Class of 2013 Division I Commitments

Cortney O’Connell, a Class of 2013 forward from Chantilly, Va., has verbally committed to Miami (Fla.), ESPNHS has learned.

O’Connell plays for Bethesda SC, which made the US Youth Soccer Region I Championships final in July. She also plays high school soccer at Freedom (South Riding, Va.), where she has earned all-district honors in her freshman and sophomore seasons.

O’Connell is the second confirmed Class of 2013 commit to Miami (Fla.), joining forward Grace Lachowecki.

Other schools considered: Maryland, North Carolina State, Virginia

Why Miami (Fla.)?: "I knew that I wanted to play in the ACC. Miami was one of the first schools I went to visit and I instantly loved it. I found myself comparing every school I visited, to Miami. The coaches were a big part of it for me, and the weather and location didn't hurt either! I was really impressed with the style of coaching and techniques they teach. I feel I can learn a lot from them. The high level of academics and small class sizes were also a big factor. I am really looking forward to being a part of the Miami team and family. It's all about the 'U'!"

What surprised you the most about the recruiting process?: "I was surprised how early the process starts. Being a sophomore and thinking about college was a little overwhelming. After actually visiting the schools, it was easy to realize where I would feel most at home."