relationships they’ve created with their
teammates — both collegiately and nationally.
And when Sabrina was off at a U.S. camp in
the spring of 2016, Monica enjoyed the unique
situation of having both of her soccer families
on the same field.
The Mexican Under- 20 women’s team came
to the United States to play some exhibitions
against college teams, including the Fighting
Irish. Monica joined her national teammates for
a few trainings and played with them against
DePaul University. However, when it came
time for Mexico to face Notre Dame, she stood
across from the Mexican team — wearing the
interlocking “N” and “D” of Notre Dame.
“It was a surreal experience,” Monica said. “No
matter which team I was with, I was extremely
loyal to both. I had 22 teammates who I was
playing for and against. It was pretty cool.”
As spring practice turned to summer
workouts, which led way to the fall season,
the Flores sisters kept concentrating on doing
what they could to help their team — whether
it be Notre Dame, the United States or Mexico.
Employing the type of focus necessary for top
athletes, Sabrina and Monica didn’t notice
much of the outside noise that may have arisen
about their unique story.
So, when Mexico scored on a free kick to take
a 66th-minute lead over the U.S. in the U- 20
World Cup quarterfinals, Monica focused on
holding that advantage. Sabrina concentrated
on helping produce an equalizer until she was
subbed out in favor of an attacking player. And
when the U.S. came back to score a stoppage-time winner, one sister celebrated victory while
the other faced the disappointment of defeat.
That’s when Sabrina, who had shared
with Monica the joy of almost every win and
frustration of nearly every defeat, met her
sister to offer support with the two on opposite
sides of the result. It showed they produce a
rare exception in sports, where the name on
the back of the jersey may mean just as much
as the one on the front.
And no matter what happens moving forward
— during their final remaining season together
at Notre Dame or in the years beyond —
Sabrina and Monica will have one another to
“The greatest thing is they have each other
to compete against every day,” Romagnolo
said. “They go out and do something to work
on their technical ability, and they’re always
pushing each other to get better. They’re so
similar in their aspirations and their drive.”
The Parents’ role
The Flores sisters each praised their parents, David
and Adriana, for helping them get to where they
are today in their soccer and academic careers.
while many parents may have an urge to push their
children in a certain direction, both Sabrina and
Monica said their parents didn’t pressure them into
making any decisions about their future.
SABrINA: “Our parents have been the most helpful
people throughout our lives. It is difficult raising twins.
They’ve been so supportive of everything we do. They
know our personalities and thanks to them we have those
personalities today — hard-working and being determined
to achieve our goals. They’ve been so loving and supporting
to give us what we need. They’ve let us take control of what
we want to do, as far as our aspirations in soccer. They’ve
let us recognize our goals and try to achieve them.”
MONICA: “They’ve been laid back and let us make the
decisions for ourselves. but once we made a decision, they
were fully behind us and did everything they could to help
us achieve what we wanted to achieve. One thing that
comes to mind, is that when I decided to go with Mexico,
I made that decision with no influence from them. They
didn’t push me either way. They let me make the decision
on my own. Once I told them I wanted to do it, they were