Marbella Rodriguez is like a superhero. Well, she feels like she has some kind of soccer superpower.

For the last two seasons, this soccer stud has helped the Cyclone women’s soccer team earn its first and second Illinois Skyway Collegiate Conference championship with an undefeated record, tack on two straight NJCAA Region IV championships as well as compete at the national tournament. That doesn’t include her individual accolades.

In both seasons with the Cyclones, Marbella was named Skyway Player of the Year, in 2016 she was named an NJCAA All-American honorable mention. She also ranked as high as No. 2 nationally for shots (104). And she only started playing organized soccer as a freshman in high school.

Many athletes who play sports at an advanced level started out at a young age. Marbella watched her brothers play while she was put in cheerleading instead.

“I asked my parents why they didn’t put me in soccer. A lot of girls started when they were little. I haven’t played as long, but it comes naturally to me,” she said. “I was never on a real team until high school, but it worked out. I’m still young and have room for improvement.”

Even with all the honors, Marbella said she could have done more and improved more this past season. Competing with a group of talented teammates, it was easy to expect a lot from herself, but she clearly has the talent.

“Some girls have played longer, and I can still compete with them. I play forward, and sometimes I’m better than the guys. It surprises me,” she said. “I rise on the same scale level with natural talent. It’s like a superpower.”