May 23, 2024

California Baptist University’s soccer is off to a solid start after winning its first matches in Division I.

The women’s team has a season record of 3-1 and the men’s team is tied 2-2 in their first DI season, thus far.

The men are coming off a 2-1 loss after a fierce battle against the University of San Diego, but Coe Michaelson, head men’s soccer coach, said he is not discouraged.

Michaelson said that while a loss is disappointing he is impressed with the men’s adaptability to the new level of competition.

“Anytime there is a loss on our schedule, we will say we wish we had done better,” Michaelson said. “We have a lot of guys learning the college game as young players.”

“We have played games in three corners of the country in 11 days and three of those games were against very challenging opposition. Plenty of teams would certainly be a lot worse off than 2-2.”

The mental adjustment to the new division requires long hours of research.

“The time (the coaching staff) puts into analyzing video and trying to find any major advantage is much higher than previous years,” Michaelson said. “Our focus as a team is really to focus on the next game. It doesn’t matter that we beat Gonzaga (University) or lost to University of San Diego. What matters is that we have a tough game coming up.”

The players themselves said they are excited and devoted to playing their best every week.

“Our team goal is to perform at our very best week in and week out,” said Joseph Scotti, junior business administration major and center-back. “Personally speaking, my goal this season is to do whatever I can to help the team perform at their highest level.”

The women’s team is undefeated so far on its home turf, but lost ts only away game.

Jordan Padgett, junior execise science major and center mid-fielder, said the team goal is to always outplay its opponent and that playing the first season as DI is a challenge  the team is ready to take on.

“It’s a battle we are prepared and ready to fight,” Padgett said. “We focus on all the little details so that we can be ready for when our time comes to perform.”

Padgett also said the team motto, “Designed to go far,” is something the team carries into every game.

“Every dent we face and every trial we encounter is shaping us and designing us to go far,” Padgett said. “It’s not about what we are going through but how we react and learn from every moment.”

The womens team’s next match is a home game against Hope International on Sept. 21 at 3 p.m.

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