Women’s soccer teammates Abby Dahlkemper and Caprice Dydasco have been friends since they were 13 years old.
Their friendship grew from their similarities, but one big difference separated them while they were growing up – and that separation happened to be approximately 2,400 miles.
The self-proclaimed “partners in crime” hail from different states: Dahlkemper is from Menlo Park, Calif., while Dydasco grew up in Honolulu, Hawaii.
Despite their different hometowns, the duo met while participating in a regional U.S. Youth Soccer Olympic Development Program camp and quickly became friends.
“She was one of the nice ones that came over and talked to me because I didn’t really have any friends yet,” Dydasco said. “And we just were friends from there.”
[LISTEN: Dahlkemper and Dydasco talk to Daily Bruin reporter Aubrey Yeo about the story of their friendship for a special radio segment]
After their initial meeting, the now-junior defenders on the UCLA women’s soccer team had several reunions during their time with the U.S. under-14, under-15 and under-17 national teams, seeing each other for periods of seven days every other month.
Dahlkemper said that her and Dydasco’s shared experiences during national camps made them discuss playing soccer together beyond their youth team careers, and going to college together became a thing to consider, with UCLA being one of the teams they’d talk about.
Their growing relationship even found its way into the recruiting process.
“I committed, and B.J. (Snow), our old coach, knew that we were really good friends, so he’d always tell me once a week, ‘Abby’s still deciding – get her on the train, have her commit,’” Dydasco said.
Now roommates at UCLA, separation between Dahlkemper and Dydasco is no longer an issue.
While the two junior defenders share a room, they also share the responsibilities of protecting UCLA’s goal as one half of the women’s soccer team’s staunch backline.
But the defensive duo also manages to relish those rare occasions when they get to score a goal.
“It’s always so exciting when one of us scores because we play defense, and (scoring) was really exciting and I went to find Abby right away and she was so excited for me,” said Dydasco, who scored her first and second collegiate goals last Friday.
UCLA assistant coach Louise Lieberman, who has overseen all three years of Dahlkemper’s and Dydasco’s collegiate careers, believes that the two of them share a special bond that will last long after they leave UCLA.
“I think Abby and Caprice are long-lost sisters,” Lieberman said. “I feel like they were always meant to know each other and they always will.”