Men’s and Women’s Soccer look to finish season strong

Men’s soccer against California (PA) on Oct. 13.

Men’s Soccer

West Liberty University men’s and women’s soccer teams are continuing their efforts as the end of the season looms near. For the men’s team, they have appeared to have hit a rough patch in the month of October. Following a 4-4 start to the season, which included a 3-3 record in Mountain East Conference play, the Hilltoppers went on a difficult four game losing skid in which they conceded a total of 14 goals. Understandably, this losing streak has been a tough pill to swallow for everyone involved, but there are actually some positives the team can focus on despite the difficulties they are facing.

The first positive, the Hilltopper men’s soccer team can look at the youth the overall team possesses. West Liberty only has seven upperclassmen: Junior Adam Lynch, Junior Tyler Swafford, Junior Spencer McDonald, Junior Drew Theiss, Senior Arun Sankar, and Graduate Students Bernardo Vilchis and Mikel Ubeda. The remaining entirety of the Hilltopper roster includes a staggering thirty-one underclassmen, with twenty-seven of those underclassmen being freshmen. Although currently holding a 4-8 record, West Liberty can salvage their season and focus on the development of their young players.

Another positive West Liberty can identify is the efforts of Vilchis, Vitor Otsuka, and Liam Toman. The trio of Hilltoppers are responsible for a combined total of 25 points for the team, which is about 73% of the entirety of team points. Freshman Toman has posted an extremely respectable seven points in his first season, while Vilchis and Freshman Otsuka have both tallied eight points. The leadership of these three men, in which two out of the three will be returning next season, offers a terrific bright spot for the team as a whole.

With West Liberty having six remaining games against MEC foes to close out the season, the team hopes to string several wins together and close out the year strongly before the MEC Championships. No matter the outcome, the West Liberty men’s soccer team is positioned strongly for the long haul, with youth in the masses preparing them for years to come.


Women’s Soccer

Next, the Lady Hilltoppers are experiencing a terrific 2021 campaign. West Liberty, who is 4-1-1 during their last six games, currently holds a 6-3-2 season record, which includes a 5-2-2 record against MEC teams. As it currently stands, the Hilltoppers currently sit at second place in the MEC North Conference, trailing only Frostburg State University, who holds a 8-2-1 overall record including a 7-1-1 record in the MEC. Overall, West Liberty’s performance sits them at fourth in the entire MEC, trailing only Concord University (9-0-2, 7-0-2), Frostburg State University, and West Virginia State University (7-3-1, 6-2-1).

A huge part of the Lady Hilltopper success is the play of Kaelyn Oskin, Alyssa Rhinamen, Rileigh Gualtiere, and Isabella Aperfine. The four stars have combined for thirty points, which is incredible given how difficult the MEC has been as a whole. Aperfine has logged six total points, and while both Rhinaman and Gualtiere have contributed seven points each, Oskin has ten points on the season, and have really paved the way for the Lady Toppers success this year.

With six games remaining, two of which are against Concord and Frostburg State, West Liberty looks to continue their strong pursuit of first place this season, as the MEC Championships begin on November 8.