Women’s Soccer Spotlight: Gi Krstec

Family can inspire you to follow your passion, and Gi Krstec knows that from experience.


Photo courtesy of FAU Athletics.

Richard Pereira, Sports Editor

Family can inspire you to follow your passion, and Gi Krstec knows that from experience.

Krstec, currently an FAU soccer player, began playing soccer at the age of four in 2002 when her family encouraged her to start participating in sports. It became Krstec’s passion thanks to her two older brothers.

“They always had their friends around, they did soccer all throughout their lives so it kind of rubbed off on me,” Krstec said. “They would always have ‘spaghetti nights’ with their whole team at our house. We also had a mini soccer field in our front yard. They would always take me out there [and] play with me so I think that’s what started my love for soccer.”

Krstec sees her brothers as an inspiration because they’ve been her biggest fans from the start.

“Every single game, they would always be wanting to watch, they’re always there. Even in college, they were always watching,” Krstec said. “Their drive for everything was just great. It rubbed off with me, so it was nice.”

What convinced Krstec to dedicate herself to soccer was the amount of time her parents invested in her playing the sport.

“When I was young, my parents were dedicating so much time to my sport and everything they kind of gave me the option of ‘Is this what you really want to do?’ I enjoyed it so much that I was ready for being at a collegiate level,” Krstec said. “I just loved it through high school and everything and I never wanted to stop. My parents were so supportive and they really helped me do it at the time.”

Krstec originally had the option to go to FAU after graduating from Lakewood Ranch High School in 2017 but chose the University of Maryland because she wanted to go outside of her comfort zone. After spending her freshman year at Maryland, she transferred to FAU in 2018. It was, for the most part, thanks to FAU’s head coach Patrick Baker that she joined the team.

“It was just not the right fit for me, I missed home and I missed the Florida weather especially, because I didn’t like the snow at all. It was just a different atmosphere than I was used to,” Krstec said. “When I was in the transfer portal, coach [Patrick] Baker was my number one choice to go to. We’ve known each other since I was like eight or 10 years old, since I was in middle school. He’s great, he welcomed me back with open arms, so it was just really fitting right when I came back in.”

Even though Krstec initially felt awkward when she joined FAU, she was welcomed by her teammates and hasn’t had any problems throughout her time with the team so far. 

“Just coming into a new group of girls, and I wasn’t a freshman, and it was right when we were starting, and I didn’t know anybody, so it was awkward for me coming in at first,” Krstec said. “But once the first two weeks [passed], everyone was so welcoming and I never had a problem.”

Krstec took on a leadership role throughout the Spring 2021 season as she became central to FAU’s offense. Her efficiency on the pitch gained recognition from Conference USA as they awarded her a spot on All-C-USA First Team, proving how well she played that season despite the obstacles of COVID-19.

Even though the team’s season ended in the quarterfinals of the C-USA tournament, Krstec thinks it’s going to be an easier transition for the team heading into the fall season. 

“For a year getting the transition for COVID, I think that was just a struggle with everybody and it was different with all the rules and everything,” Krstec said. “We have everything down and we think everyone is ready to come out with a bang. We really want to get into the tournament and really win it this year so it’s a big year for us.”

Krstec wishes to play in a professional setting once her time with FAU concludes. If that opportunity doesn’t appear, she’ll continue doing her master’s program for sports management. “For my future career, I really want to be an athletic director and I really find myself fitting in that role,” she said.

Richard Pereira is the Sports Editor for the University Press. For information regarding this or other stories, email [email protected] or tweet him @Rich26Pereira.