TUCSON, AZ - Former Wildcat Renae Cuellar was selected to play for the Mexican National Team in the 2015 Women's World Cup, which began on Saturday, June 6. Cuellar is coming off an injury that held her out of action for some time after she suffered cartilage damage to her knee and a meniscus tear. She has been coming in as their super sub to bring a spark to the team off the bench with her speed and goal scoring ability.
"It's a dream come true," Cuellar said. "This is the biggest tournament for women's soccer and it's an amazing feeling. Coming back from my injury and every obstacle I've had to overcome to get here makes it that much sweeter. I'm representing my country, my family, the people I love, and my alumnae. There is no better feeling than this."
The 24-year old is making her first World Cup appearance for El Tri and has collected 28 total international caps. She made her first international appearance as a 20-year old back in 2009 when they took on China PR. Cuellar has scored seven goals for the National Team and will look to add to that total during the World Cup.
"I've prepared differently than others, mentally and physically," Cuellar said. "I've worked hard to prepare for this moment and I am ready after therapy this whole year and then normal training. "From sharpening up my strengths and weaknesses to tactics, it's been nothing but hard work. My role is whatever the team asks of me, whether I'm a starter or substitut. I have been a part of this team for years and feel my role in this World Cup will be huge, and of course to put the ball in the back of the net."
She also participated in the FIFA U-20 Women's World Cup in Germany in 2010 for Mexico and scored a goal in a 3-3 draw against Japan. She also netted the game winner in the 62nd minute in a 1-0 victory against England in group play.
As a Wildcat, Cuellar played in 53 total games. As a freshman in 2008, she tied for the team lead with five goals and was second on the team with two assists. She was named to the All-Pac-10 Freshman team and was selected as honorable mention for the All-Pac-10 team.
She asserted herself once again as Arizona's top offensive weapon as a sophomore in 2009. She led the team in goals with six, shots with 43 and shots on goal with 21. She was an honorable mention selection to the All-Pac-10 team again. She also scored three game-winning goals during a five game stretch between Sep. 6 and Sep. 25.
As a junior in 2009, she scored six goals and had three assists in just six games before suffering a season ending knee injury and she only played in nine games as a senior in 2010.