Local girl takes inspiration from Thorns FC's Tobin Heath, becomes YouTube star with walkabout | The Backcut
Portland Thorns star Tobin Heath put up a video in 2008 of her doing a walkabout while juggling a soccer ball and it seems to have stuck with at least one local youth. Katelyn Penner, age 12, filmed her own version of Heath's walkabout and posted it on YouTube with the help of her parents. Penner's video has gone viral, amassing tens of thousands of views on the U.S. Soccer YouTube page and several thousand on her own.
In an interview with KGW, Penner said she hopes one day to become a member of the U.S. Women's National Team, and has a personal record of 5,001 straight touches without a drop. The video is impressive, with the preteen hopping through jungle gyms, down slides and kicking the ball through basketball hoops -- all without ever losing a touch.
With her arsenal of flips and stalls, Penner juggles across the campus of Nike in Beaverton, through parks and across bridges, and stops in front of the Thorns' own Providence Park. She even manages to throw a stall onto her shoulders and take a refreshing sip of lemonade from a glass on the sidewalk.
No word yet on whether or not Tobin Heath has seen the video, but Penner told KGW that some of her other soccer heroines have given her positive feedback, including Heather Mitts and Yael Averbuch of the Washington Spirit.
Here's Heath's original video: