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RISING STAR: Chris Hegngi
by Joe Addison, July 30th, 2008 2:47PM



D.C. United was one of the first MLS clubs to invest in youth development. Its academy program is loaded with future pro prospects. One of the top academy players is rising senior Chris Hegngi..

Nickname: Topher or CT
Birthdate: August 29, 1991
Youth Club: U-18 D.C. United. I played for the Potomac Cougars before joining United.
High School: DeMatha Catholic High School
Position: I'm a striker.
College plans: I plan on attending Ohio State
International Experience: I've been playing with the U-18 national team. I really enjoyed a tournament we went to in France last fall.
First soccer memory:  I remember seeing guys juggling the ball on the TV and then trying to do it myself. It wasn't as easy as it looked.
Strengths: I'm skillful and have good technique. I'm also 6-foot-1, so my size helps me out a bit.
Weaknesses: I need to work on my movement up top and reading the game. But really, I'd like to work on improving all aspects of my game.
Highlight: Playing for the U-18 national team.
Lowlight: This past spring, I was going through a bit of a slump. It taught me a lot, though, and I worked hard to get back my form.
Memorable advice: Success can always lead to more success, and it's important not to stop and admire what you've accomplished. You can always keep working hard and get to the next level.
Who do you play like? Ronaldo -- the original Ronaldo.
Other sports: It's always been soccer for me.
Academic interests: I'd like to major in business management. Hopefully, I can have a career as a professional soccer player, but once that ends, I'd like to go into real estate.
Volunteering: I help out at my local church.
Role models: My dad. I always talk to him after every game. He tells me what I need to work on and provides a lot of encouragement. On the field, I look up to Ronaldo. He's my all-time favorite player and I think he's the best to ever play the game.
Favorite teams: Arsenal and Brazil.
Favorite players: Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Alexandre Pato, even though he's only a couple years older than me.
Favorite TV Shows: "Family Guy" and "Scrubs."
Favorite Movie: The Departed
Favorite Book: To Kill a Mockingbird
Favorite Music: Lil Wayne
Craziest memorable moment on the soccer field: I once scored a goal that deflected off three different defenders. Somehow, I still managed to get credit for it.

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