Assistant Sports Editor
The men’s soccer team has been the most successful team on campus this season. Their success can mostly be attributed to the explosive output from the upperclassmen. However, the underclassmen on the team have been making a name for themselves, and showing everyone the future of the program is in good hands.
The underclassmen are responsible for 61 out of the team’s 141 total points (43%). They attribute their success to many different factors.
“My teammates, coaches, and the facilities that i have access to have helped me become the player I am today,” said Freshman Dexter Tenn. “All the resources that are available like the athletic room, weight room, and coaching staff have been integral in teaching me and helping me get in the best shape of my life.”
Being physically prepared for a game is obviously important, but being mentally prepared is equally as important. That is something head coach Steffan Seibert understands, and has found a unique way of acknowledging.
“Coach recommends books for us to read to help us with mental parts of the game and that also apply to our life,” said sophomore Keon Haji. “If I am ever feeling down on myself I might think back to something that I read in one of the books and that helps me to get back on track.”
Most athletes agree that the transition from high school to the college level is tough, but when you have a bond with the leaders on the team and a shared love for the game, it makes it a little bit easier.
“The leaders on this team are great,” said sophomore Ian Zacharewicz. “A lot of times you will stray from the path a little bit. Maybe you’re not playing well or something in your personal life is distracting you, but if you have a problem, talk to the guys. We all stray from the path sometimes, but talking to your teammates is what will help you get back on.”
Now that the sophomores on the team have a full season under their belt, they now have a better idea of what it takes to succeed at the college level.
“You have got to be good at accepting criticism,” said Zacharewicz. “You’re going to mess up, a lot. You have to know that screwing up is going to make you better. You have to be a sponge and absorb all the advice you’re getting from coaches and players.”
“Trust the process,” said sophomore Christian Schneider. “Coming in as a freshman you are kind of caught off guard with everything that is going on. So as long as you trust coach, and you trust all the players on the team, you will accomplish a lot and have a great time doing it.”
Schneider is one of the underclassmen who have been making an impact this year. With nine assists, he is only two away from tying the program record for assists in a season which was set by Ed Greene in 1989. Schneider is excited about the prospect of making history, but he won’t let it get to his head.
“I actually didn’t know about the record until a few days ago,” said Schneider. “It is a pretty exciting feeling knowing I am that close. As long as I don’t let it get to my head, I think I can accomplish it.”
It is important to live in the moment and not to look a year or two down the road. However, if the freshman on this team continue to develop, and the sophomores show they can fit into leadership roles, expect this team not only to be successful this year, but for years to come.
Gage can be contacted on Twitter at @Gage32097