The 2013 recipient of the Always Dreaming Scholarship inspired by Frank Kara is Nicole Baier, senior forward on the Golden Gopher Women's Soccer team. She came to the university from the University of Nebraska-Omaha.
Nicole transferred to the University of Minnesota from University of Nebraska Omaha the summer before the 2010 season. Her senior year of high school, she tore her ACL and had to miss her high school soccer season. She rehabbed her knee with her own doctors and physical therapists to prepare for her first collegiate soccer season at University of Nebraska-Omaha where she re-tore her same ACL during her freshmen year and was forced to take a medical redshirt.
After rehabbing for a second time, she returned to the soccer field where she earned All- American honors as a redshirt freshman. Nicole went out on a limb and transferred to University of Minnesota as a walk-on to push herself to the next level. She played minutes here and there for the Gophers during her sophomore year. She started 19 of 21 matches during her junior year. Missing the two starts after tearing her other ACL in the final game of the regular big ten season.
Last Spring Nicole rehabbed a torn ACL for a third time to make it back for her senior year and was a difference maker in the 2012 season. Her diligence and hard work on the field along with her multiple knee rehabilitations are truly inspiring. She has taught the team so much about not giving up and putting your heart into everything you do.