Women’s soccer senior class leaves a legacy of unity

The+Appalachian+Online

The Appalachian Online

Jess Lyons

The womens soccer team’s class of nine seniors has successfully finished their season with a 5-3-1 conference record and a 9-6-3 overall record.

Senior Day was held Sunday during the last game of the season against Georgia State University before the Sun Belt Tournament. Fans gathered at the front of the bleachers with large printouts of the seniors faces to commemorate all they’ve done during their careers.

Despite all of the emphasis put on the seniors through celebratory days and gestures from the team, members of the senior class stressed that this season has never really been about them.

“Summing it up I think our senior class has always been more about the team than it has been about the seniors,” senior midfielder Jenni Loveless said. “The season has been about the team and never about the seniors, because if it was about us the team wouldn’t be where it is right now.”

Loveless also mentioned it matters more what role everyone on the team plays and not what year they are or how long they’ve been a member of the Mountaineers.

Senior forward Jenn Bass stressed the importance of individual roles on the team. She emphasized that by playing as a unit, and not by class, has allowed the team to work out their kinks from years prior and create a strong program.

The senior class for the Mountaineers as a whole stressed that playing for their team has brought them so much farther than playing for a senior legacy.

“We’ve definitely implemented the idea of playing for each other and coming together and knowing that we’re playing for something so much bigger than ourselves,” senior defender Merlin Beckwith said. “It’s been a great season because we’ve overcome adversity. We’ve gone up and down, but we’ve pushed through it and we’re always ready for the next game.”

Throughout the season the senior class has put in impressive amounts of minutes, goals and shutouts during their last season.

Senior goalkeeper Meg Roberson has played 1,402 minutes out of the 1,680 minute total in the season and boasted an overall save percentage of 75.3 in goal. She also pitched four shutouts.

The entire senior class has played in all 18 games this season, and with three goals apiece, senior forward Sam Childress and Beckwith tied for the lead in goal count for seniors. Beckwith also led the senior class in assists with a total of four.

Even with so much success on the field, the senior class stresses it’s some of the off-the-field comradery with the team that they’ll miss the most.

“The singing, the bus rides, those are memories you look back on. It’s going to different places and having new experiences with a team you love,” Beckwith said.

Seniors Carrie Taylor and Abbey Nolte also mentioned how much they’ll miss the bus rides that didn’t always make it to their destination and the practices with the team.

“We make everyone feel really comfortable, which hasn’t always been a thing in the past. That’s something that our class has really wanted to set in because we want everyone to feel comfortable with the team and that if you’re a freshman you can feel comfortable talking to a senior,” Nolte said. “I think that’s something the other classes have really gotten from us and it will continue to apply even when we leave.”

With a legacy of unity, comfort and success to leave behind for the rest of their teammates, the seniors prepare to take on their last tournament games starting Nov. 4 in Atlanta Georgia before ending their program-changing undergraduate soccer careers at Appalachian State University.

Story by: Jess Lyons, Senior Sports Reporter