Getting to Know Kate Wiesner

Washington Spirit  |   June 26, 2024

The seventh overall draft selection in the 2024 NWSL Draft, Kate Wienser enters her first NWSL season with the Spirit. The former Penn State Nittany Lion has appeared and started in multiple matches this year, despite being sidelined with an injury early in the season. A versatile player, Wiesner has featured on the wing in both a defending and attacking capacity for the Spirit.

In college, Wiesner’s time on the pitch increased each season, culminating in 4,668 career minutes and a single-season career high 1,689 minutes in 2023. She has been a staple on the U.S. Youth National Teams, making the U-15, U-17, U-19 and U-23 rosters. Wiesner has played with midfielder Croix Bethune at the youth national team level, and she was recently invited to train with the senior national team at the pre-Olympic camp in early July.


Where did you get your competitive instinct from?

Definitely from my dad. We’d played games growing up in the backyard since I could remember. He was never the dad that would just let me win; we would always go all out. I think that’s where I got it from. We played sports, video games, literally anything. We would come up with random challenges to do to beat each other. My personal favorite was when we’d get a super light ball from Target or Walmart, the ones you’d find in those big bins. One of us would be in goal and the other would smack the ball as hard as they could at the other person, it would always go all over the place.


Who are your men’s and women’s soccer GOATs?

Men’s soccer GOAT is (Lionel) Messi. After the last World Cup, he solidified that. Women’s isn’t as clear cut. I want to say Abby Wambach, maybe because I grew up watching her. I just think she is a lethal goal-scorer. Mia Hamm is a fair choice. Marta is a good choice, too.


Do you have any superstitions before a match?

Yes, I always put on my socks, shin guards and cleats in a specific order. The left always goes on before the right. I don’t know when it started, definitely a while ago; it has to be since about middle school, about a decade. My other one would be at halftime I always do a little hop across the halfway line. Whatever side I’m starting on, I just hop over to the other side. That one started when I was pretty young, maybe 12. I would do it with my old teammate, and I scored a hat-trick in the second half. Since that game I have done it every game.


What’s the best piece of advice you’ve received or mantra you go by?

I have had a lot of good mentors in my life that have given me some great advice. The biggest thing for me in college, and something we focused on a lot as a team, was just being process driven rather than results driven. That is something I try to carry with me: “Trust the process”. Obviously, it isn’t easy and there are a lot of ups and downs, but focusing on the day-to-day rather than the outcome.


What is your favorite pizza topping?

I like straight up pepperoni. I feel like you can’t go wrong with that. Recently it has been regular pepperoni with a little drizzle of hot honey. It’s phenomenal.


What is always in your fridge?

Honestly LaCroix sparkling water is always in my fridge. I always have ranch dressing in my fridge – it’s the superior condiment. It’s good for salad, pizza, fries, chicken tenders, you name it. Ranch just makes a lot of things better.


What is your go-to home cooked meal that you make?

One of my recent favorites, definitely a good summer one, is buffalo chicken zucchini boats. You cut a zucchini and take the inside out and put a pre-cooked buffalo chicken mixture in there with some shredded cheese. The chicken mixture heats up while the zucchini is cooking, add a little cheese and ranch dressing, and it is so good.


What was your first concert?

This is kind of a funny story. I flew into Philly to go back to school, and my teammates picked me up from the airport. They were like, “Surprise! We’re going to the DaBaby concert in Philly,” and I was like, “Okay!” That was my first concert. I can’t remember his opening act, I didn’t know that many of his songs, it was all rap. I was just there for the vibes. I have been to a Zach Bryan concert since then, that was pretty phenomenal.


What is your favorite music genre and artists that fall under it?

I’m going to stay in the Zach Bryan category – he’s like country bordering on folk. Zach Bryan, The Lumineers, and Caamp, all more in the folk genre. I love Mt. Joy, too.


What is your favorite Spirit moment?

Probably scoring my first goal against Utah. The ball was just kind of bouncing around and Hal (Hershfelt) laid it off. I was like, “Oh, I’m going to volley this into the top corner.” Then, it got blocked, so I was kind of mad. It came right back to me, and I didn’t have an option to lay off, so I turned around and smacked it into the corner.

Did you have a celebration planned for your first goal?

Prior to this, I have given some thought to my celebration, but in the moment, everything went out the window. I was just excited and right next to everyone. Casey (Krueger) gave me a big proud mom hug, and that was pretty sweet.


What’s a skill you want to learn?

A skill that I would love to learn, but don’t know if I ever will, would be to play the guitar. I think it would be so cool. It could be a party trick, or I could be vibing sitting out on the balcony with my guitar. Maybe the ukulele, but I can’t sing, though, so maybe it won’t be the best pairing.

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