By: Reece Hester
Hardin-Simmons University’s soccer teams work hard every semester. Last year, for example, the HSU women’s soccer team won the American South Western Conference and thus,the conference title.
Talin Rizo, the assistant coach of women’s soccer said,“It was exciting to see the girls run together, hug and celebrate their hard work and yet maintain their winning positive attitude and also keep up a family and God-centered community.
According to Matt Pitcock, the assistant coach of men’s soccer stated, “The men’s team grows in facing adversity and nationally-ranked opponents. There are many new young players on the men’s team, ready to grow into great players.”
For the men’s team, grit is important in order to be able to play off on the field and get through some of the dirty work. Older students and returning students from the previous season are coming back to help the new players grow and move past the final hump for growth. The women’s team builds from what they experienced from last year while possessing an aim to have Christ-centered champions and to show people how they care for others. Last season, the men also made it to the finals.
The soccer teams inspire the HSU community in many ways. Pitcock shared that just like soccer, a vehicle for life, “We all live in a game, we will face defeat, have highs and lows and go through good and bad days, but we are here for higher purposes.” Rizo provided inspiration that in life, just like a soccer team, “We work with many other people, with each member having different aspects of life and qualities within each other in life, even after school.”
Paulo De Oliveira, a senior majoring in fitness, recreation and sports management from Brazil, is a scout for the men’s and women’s soccer teams. He expressed that “both teams have worked really hard, often challenging themselves to grow. The team also has faced many injuries to players, however, the teams are still able to work together in order to achieve their goals successfully. Both teams aim to work harder than the previous season and maintain a Christ-centered team.”