by Jimmy Betsill
Mines Men’s soccer is back on the field again and ready to put together another great season back in front of the fans. As head coach Greg Mulholland told me “The staff and players are ready and focused for this season. We have many returning players who have helped with our past success and a class of younger players who are the right fit for Mines Soccer.” After a 2-1 win over St. Martin’s, a 3-1 win over St. Mary’s, and a 2-1 loss against Regis, the men’s soccer team has some mixed results to start this season.
Despite this start to the season, the goals are a lot more varied for the men’s team this year as the four-straight defending RMAC champs. Taking things one game at a time seems to be the idea for the team. As forward Chris Seery put it “We all want to do our best because that’s all that we can do.” It was even hard for the head coach to summarize his goals for this season saying “Expectations are hard to state because being RMAC champion and RMAC tournament champion the last four years and making two NCAA sweet sixteen appearances was an unforeseeable achievement.”
The team certainly retains the depth to be the RMAC champions once again. Coach Mulholland went through the lineup for me and highlighted some of the players to watch out for. Graduate students George Marchant and Patrick Allen return as captains and are expected to be “as solid as they have been their entire careers” (note due to the COVID pandemic no athlete lost any eligibility last year so they were eligible to return despite this being their fifth season where rules state that you are only allowed four seasons of athletic collegiate competition). The attack is led by experienced seniors Azad Iliozier and Tristian Semelsberger with redshirt seniors Mike Sprauer and Connor Van Loveren locking down the midfield. In the back half of the formation, there is a mix of experience highlighted by graduate defender Lucas King and senior goalkeeper Brian Doherty along with the youth of players like sophomore Vaughn Simpson.
One thing that will be welcomed back by the coaches and players is the return of fans and a normal atmosphere. “The energy and support in Stermole Soccer Stadium helps us to be our best,” said head coach Greg Mulholland. As Chris Seery put it “I think the team will benefit from having their friends and family cheer them on, I know I will.”
As the team is soon about to begin RMAC conference play it will be something to follow whether they will be able to get a fifth straight conference championship or more in their first full season since 2019.