Finland state

Finland’s Sanna Rein brings fabulous finishes to St. Rose football

Sanna Rein is entering her third season as a defenseman for the College of Saint Rose women’s soccer team fresh out of the summer league for the New York Shockers while supporting her home country of Finland in the European Women’s Championship.

“I think I watched every game,” Rein said. “It was amazing to see Wembley sold out and all eyes on the women’s game. It makes me very, very happy to see.

His Finnish team went 0-3 in the tournament, failing to qualify for the knockout round. The competition was fierce and the footballing world saw host team England win the tournament in spectacular fashion, beating mighty Germany 2-1 in extra time.

On the ground of Saint Rose, Rein has the gift of fabulous finishes.

“When I was younger I used to play central midfield most of the time, so maybe I have a bit of that attacking instinct,” she said. “I like being an option on corners or set pieces, that’s definitely one of my strengths.”

The 5-foot-8, second-team All-American finished last season with four goals and two assists last year. In her debut season in 2019, she scored three goals with two assists. Three of his career goals have been game winners.

Rein’s offseason has been busy.

New York Shockers, playing at Afrim’s Sports Park in Colonie and featuring the best football players in the region, play in the Women’s Premier Soccer League (WPSL). After the WPSL season ended in early July, Rein flew home to Finland for two weeks and returned to the capital region just a few days ago, only to find herself trying to find herself again. acclimatize to the climate of upstate New York. The Golden Knights officially begin training for the 2022 season on Tuesday.

“It’s much warmer and more humid here than at home, but it’s nice. I think I’ve adapted to it a lot better now than in my freshman year,” Rein said.

The College of Saint Rose’s women’s football program is ranked second in United Soccer’s national pre-season coaching survey. Rein is one of eight starters and 27 returning players on the 2021 squad that won the NE-10 Tournament Championship, NCAA East Region Championship and advanced to the National Championship Game. NCAA Division II. The Golden Knights lost in the Finals to top-ranked 2022 preseason Grand Valley State of Allendale, Michigan in double overtime.

“I think it’s a good challenge to be recognized,” Rein said. “But I think for us to keep moving forward, we have to take every game as our own, do the work and make it happen. We need to focus on the small steps first so we can achieve the big goal.

His advice to hard-working newcomers to save time: Be confident that your hard work will pay off. And look for mentors.

“Throughout my career, I have been lucky to have a close role model who plays with me and who can teach me in daily practice. I was very lucky to play in a women’s team from my younger age and I saw all these super motivated athletic strong women every day,” Rein said. “And of course coach Laurie (Darling Gutheil) was a big role model for me all of that for three years and he’s someone I look up to.”

Former Saint Rose football star Morgan Burchhardt of Burnt Hills, who is now an assistant coach under Darling Gutheil, was one of those who guided Rein early in his career. She continues to be an inspiration.

“Morgan is a great role model for new freshmen. She’s got a lot of experience and knows a bit of a player’s perspective as well,” she said. “We’re so lucky to have her.”