2021 Women’s Soccer Preview


Arica Burns

The Millikin Women’s Soccer team’s season has begun, and they are fired up for a full season. Finally, they are able to be back on the field, and they are ready to lead themselves to victory together. Values on their side, they are ready to bring their all to the field in hopes of garnering wins on and off the field.

“You can have all the talent in the world, and you can have an understanding of the game. If you don’t have the right personality out of the right people wanting to work hard for each other for themselves, it’s not going to work.” said Head Coach Ian Doherty. “So our culture is big for us. It’s something that we want to have respect for one another. We want to work hard for each other, and we want to take care of one another. We control the controllable.”

This team is ready to take on their competitors because of how close they’ve become since COVID-19 has forced their playing time into exhibition games. They want to win, but they won’t let their goals lead past their values as a team to be as strong together as they can. They are hungry for competition, and they’re ready to come together as a team to try to be as competitive as they can.

“Overall, I think this year we have a good mesh of different personalities and a lot more drive to win games.” said Emily Lopez, a Senior and Co-Captain.  “I feel that a lot of us are happy to be back on the field after having to sit out a season for COVID, so we aren’t taking this season for granted. I feel like this year is different because there is a different energy and fire to everyone on the field.”

These ladies are going out on the field in excitement at the season before them, and it’s not something they’re going to take for granted. After the stress of the last two years, they are ready for the chance to be back out on the field again to prove just how good they are. As a team, there are several seniors, one junior, and some sophomores and freshmen, so it’s a very fresh team, and they’re the first team that’s solely been coached under Coach Doherty.

“This year I think the difference is that this is the first group of girls that have only been coached by Ian so it’s a pretty special group of girls.” said Maddy Wood, a Senior and Co-Captain. “I think we have a real hunger this year to fight for every win and play to our highest level. There is a lot of excitement from the freshmen all the way to the seniors. This excitement and desire to be our best is a game changer this season.”

The team is craving competition, wins, and a chance to play games that aren’t just exhibition. Many of the players are hoping for some conference wins, and that’s why the excitement is palpable. They go out there to win, but they also go out to compete at the highest level to show how good they are.

“We only have one junior on the team, and the rest of our team is made up of seniors, sophomores and freshmen.” said Amanda Noser, a Senior and Co-Captain. “The freshmen and sophomores haven’t really played like an actual season. So us seniors know the competition of conferences, and we know how much fun it can be to win those games. I think we put that fight in, to show the others on the team who haven’t played yet.”

The seniors are most excited for Senior Night, played on October 23rd against North Central, but they are playing hard at every game. You can catch the Big Blue next at home on Wednesday, September 22nd against Monmouth College.