The men’s and women’s team from SOU had outstanding heartfelt performances in this year’s conference tournament. Both teams made it into the semi-finals but unfortunately could not make it into the finals. The women’s team came into the tournament in second place playing the 7th place Oregon Tech. The raiders beat OIT in the quarterfinals 2-1. The men’s team beat the College of Idaho Yotes with the same 2-1 score. The raiders were the only women and men’s team pair that made it to the semi finals of the tournament. The men’s team tied Warner Pacific in the semi finals, tied through two overtimes and went into pks. The men lost in the shoot out. The women’s team lost 1-0 vs College of Idaho. Both teams fought with passion, while keeping composure and respect. They left it all out on the field, both teams put their all into these games. The raiders have had an amazing season this year. With impressive performances, perseverance, and sportsmanship, these teams have represented SOU well.
Many players from both squads made first and second all conference teams. From the women’s team Jordan Bell a center back defender made the first team, she has held down the fort for the raiders helping lead them to one of the best defensive teams in the nation. Sarah Mauk, an outstanding forward with a lot of goals in the back of the net this season, made the first team as well. The last first team qualifying for the women’s team is goalkeeper Jessie Selby, who has had an outstanding performance throughout this season and her career, letting very few goals get past her. Madison Childers, Sophia Connel, Malaika Quigley, and Baylee Touey all made honorable mention for all conference.
From the men’s team, forward Alan Gaytan and defender Tybalt Thornberry both made the first team with very strong seasons from the two. Izaiha Bruce and Adrian Villegas both made the second team, both being very strong midfielders. Honorable mention for the men’s team went to forward Sam Walker.
Although their seasons did not have the outcome that we all have been hoping for, there is endless reason to be proud. The performances that both teams have shown this year are extraordinary. I am beyond impressed with the work ethic and dedication that these players have shown. The love of their sport shines through everyday they step on the pitch. These players have shown resilience as they worked through 116 degree conditions, to rainy feels, bad referees and many more uncontrollable conditions. They rolled with the punches and came out on top. As the raiders season is coming to an end they have a lot to look back on and be proud of. As well as so much in the future to work towards. The players who will move forward with the SOU soccer program will train in the weight room and on the pitch in the off season to come back stronger than ever.