1991 MAC Hermann Trophy Winner
College: University of North Carolina
Hometown: Wilton, CT
Kristine Lilly received many recognitions in addition to winning the 1991 Hermann Trophy and being a finalist in 1992. Lilly was a four-time First-Team NSCAA All-American, and a four-time First-Team All-ACC and All-South selection. Her number 15 jersey was retired in 1994 by the University of North Carolina. Lilly helped lead UNC to four NCAA titles from 1989-1992 and was twice named the Offensive MVP of the NCAA Championship (’89, ’90). She completed her collegiate career with 78 goals and 41 assists.
In 2001 Lilly became one of the founding members of the Women’s United Soccer Association (WUSA) as the captain of the Boston Breakers. After the termination of WUSA in 2003 Lilly left the states to play for Swedish club KIF Örebro DFF in 2005. In 2008, she returned to the Boston Breakers, now playing in Women’s Professional Soccer (WPS).
She played in five FIFA Women’s World Cups (the only woman to do so) and three Olympic Games, helping the USA win four of those tournaments, finishing second once and third three times. She is the only player to appear for the United States in four different decades and is both the youngest and oldest player to ever score a goal for the USA. She is also the oldest player ever to earn a cap by more than three years over long-time teammate Joy Fawcett.
After her first cap in 1987 against China she would go on to represent her country 352 times, by far a world record for women or men and a mark possibly never to be equaled. Lilly was named U.S. Soccer Female Athlete of the Year three times during her career with the first award coming in 1993 and, remarkably, two more 12 and 13 years later, coming back-to-back in 2005 and 2006. On January 5, 2011 Kristine Lilly retired from professional soccer as one of the greatest to ever play. In 2014 she was elected to the National Soccer Hall of Fame.