Camp Verde High soccer senior Nate Schultz is taking his talents to North Carolina.
Schultz signed with Piedmont International University, accepting a scholarship from the Winston-Salem based Christian school.
“It was too good of an opportunity to turn away,” Schultz said. Coach (Craig) Golding has had players that played professionally and that is my eventual goal, so to be able to learn from him will be priceless.”
Golding played in England and Germany and earned coaching licenses from the English Football Association and the United States Soccer Federation.
Piedmont International competes in the National Christian College Athletic Association.
“I think it’s fantastic,” said Camp Verde High School head coach David Miller. “He’s worked hard and he continues to work hard. I’ve known Nathan for probably six years now and when they first moved to town and he has a passion for the game and he does other sports to get ready for soccer, to be a stronger soccer player and so that’s been his focus. He was raised in Honduras and so I think it’s so of in bred.”
Schultz had wanted to go to Liberty but was pleasantly surprised to get the offer form PIU.
“I was hoping to get into Liberty University but they had already filled their slots for this year,” Schultz said. “This school came out of nowhere, I just sent them my video and the coach said he was interested, I was excited.”
Schultz was All-Region, Region Player of the Year, All-State and 2A Player of the Year.
As a senior he played defender and forward but will play defense at Piedmont International, at least to start.
“He’s been a top player in the state for the last three years and he was recognized last year as the runner up to being the number one and this year he was the number one,” Miller said. “He plays offense and defense, I personally think he’s more of a defensive player.”
Schultz, the CVHS student body president, wants to major in business administration with a minor in youth ministry.
Piedmont International was established in 1945.
“It’s very, very small, it’s a lot like a high school but the people are very kind and it’s a little bit different, more old, I guess you could say and very traditional, I really like that, a good Christian school,” Schultz said.
Miller said he thinks he’ll do well at the college level.
“What he’ll bring to the game is heart and passion and he’ll be able to acquire the skills,” Miller said.
Playing college soccer is one goal down for Schultz.
“It’s definitely a goal I’ve had for all four years of high school and hoping it can help me get my life long goal of playing professional ball and it’s just exciting to see what God has in store for me,” Schultz said.
With Miller taking over as Camp Verde Middle School head coach this spring, Schultz asked if he could be an assistant, something Miller thinks will help his game.
“I always believe that if you want to be a better player, get out and coach the game, you get to see different aspects of the game, you get to see how you can improve,” Miller said. “Guys who teach are better players, coaching, teaching, whatever it is. I would probably say you could go to the history teacher and by teaching the class becomes a better historian because you have to understand the different aspects.”
Schultz said coaching has been really fun and that he loves the middle school Cowboys.
“Nathan is revered by the younger kids, I mean the kids on the middle school team, they know of his reputation on the high school team, they’re excited to have him out there working with them, they measure themselves by playing against him and they appreciate his dedication to the sport,” Miller said.
In 2016, Schultz won MaxPreps/NSCAA Player Of The Week.
“He’s a good kid, he works for me at the store,” Miller said. “He’s a good kid, he’s got great moral values, great standards, he’s set personal goals in life, he’s a good kid.”