While collegiate sports news in Los Angeles frequently focuses on local juggernauts, UCLA and USC, LMU’s athletic program boasts a number of teams that dominate on the field, and Women’s Soccer is just one example. This year, Women’s Soccer completed a historical season in which the Lions not only set program records for its wins, but also made it to the Sweet Sixteen for the first time in its history. Led by a remarkable defense, LMU gave up an average of only 1.01 goals and posted 12 shutouts, one shy of the all-time program record.
When reflecting on the season, LMU Head Coach Michelle Myers, said “It [was] a good run and I can’t be prouder of this team,” said Myers. “We had great opportunities, we possessed the ball, got in behind them and created things. The difference today was that they were very clinical in their finishing. When they got a chance, they finished it.”
Life as a student athlete can be dominated by practice time on the field and study time in the library, but members of the women’s soccer team have also found time to give back to the community. Team members lead soccer clinics through the local AYSO soccer chapter year round, volunteer for the Midnight Mission on Skid Row, and support Soccer for Hope, a non-profit organization dedicated to raising funds and awareness for children with life-threatening diseases.
And despite having just pulled off a record-breaking season, the LMU Women’s Soccer team will keep busy during their off-season. With daily practices, weight room sessions, and grueling conditioning workouts, it is year-round preparation for a team that is always looking to improve. As LMU senior, Madison Heilmann, puts it, “it can be exhausting, but we put in the work early on so we can see results later.”
What’s in store for next year? Despite the fact that eight seniors will graduate this year, the team boasts a very deep bench, so a strong team and exciting season is most certainly in the cards for 2016. One thing on the team’s wish list for next fall – more fans in the stands. “We put in so much work to see results in games and we love to see the fans come out to support, especially from our local community,” says Heilmann.
Are you a soccer fan? The first four individuals who send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject line “Go Lions!” will win a four-pack of tickets to an LMU Women’s Soccer game next season.