BOULDER -- Oregon State's Jacy Drobney felt nearly at home Saturday when she and the Beavers battled Colorado in women's soccer at Prentup Field.
"The altitude was a little hard, but it felt good to be back here and play," she said. "I've grown up playing on this field."
A former standout at Silver Creek High School, Drobney is now a captain at Oregon State. Saturday's game -- a 2-0 win for OSU -- was her first game in her home state since she left for college in the fall of 2010.
"It was nice," she said. "I was excited all week and I know every one of the girls on the (CU) team. It was nice coming back and knowing familiar territory and playing and letting everyone come out and see me play.
"I had a lot of friends and obviously family and random people (at the game). It was good to see those people."
Her fans saw a different player than the one she was at Silver Creek. When she played for the Raptors, Drobney was a top-notch scorer who racked up 53 goals and 49 assists during her career. As a sophomore in 2008, she helped Silver Creek win the Class 4A state title.
At Oregon State, she has played a midfield position that doesn't require her to compile points. She has just four goals and three assists as a Beaver, but has been a solid contributor her entire career.
As a freshman in 2010, she was one of just two freshmen to earn significant playing time, she said, and wound up starting 14 games.
"That kind of gave me credibility," she said.
Named a captain this year, Drobney has now played 55 career games, starting 48 of them.
"Now as captain, it gives me more confidence," she said. "I like it a lot. There's the political side to it now, but I like being able to command the team and make sure everyone is on the right page."
Much like Silver Creek did, Oregon State depends heavily on Drobney, who leads the team in minutes played (1,325) this season.
So far, it's been quite a career for Drobney. She has earned academic honors and has been a key member of a great team. Oregon State has made three consecutive NCAA Tournament appearances and, at 10-4-1, has its sights set on another trip to the postseason.
"It's been an experience," she said. "It's been the best thing for me, I think."
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