By Keenan A. Mount
Both women’s and men’s soccer teams captured NJCAA D1 Region 24 championships, permitting both teams to play on a national level. Both teams defeated ICC, Illinois Central College, with one point leads.
Ryan Hodge, L&C’s Head Men’s Soccer Coach, reflects on the road to his team’s victory in this season, stating, “We were pretty banged up in the beginning of the season and at one point we had nine guys unavailable.” Hodge says despite this rough start they were capable of maintaining a positive outlook, citing the use of a “next man up mentality.”
Hodge cites leadership and the overall strength of L&C’s sophomore class as key factors in making it to this point in the season.
Coach Hodge stresses the weight of these championship titles by describing them as “great accomplishments.” Hodge also states that these accomplishments are “very hard to do as we have good teams in our area that are always ranked nationally like us.” Due to the difficulty of securing this championship status, Hodge explains that these teams gained “confidence going forward.”
Going into national competition, Coach Hodge preaches to his team “that at this time that it is not about skill level or tactics anymore” but that “it just comes down to hard work and discipline.”