Following an 11-0-2 season and second-place conference finish in 2017, expectations were sky-high for Head Coach Phil Wolf’s seventh season. While the men’s soccer team did reach double-digit wins for the second consecutive year, a 10-6-2 outing was only enough for a fourth-place finish in the competitive PacWest, which was less than what the Sea Lions were initially hoping for.
“We expected more from ourselves this season. Before the season, we were the favorites. We couldn’t quite deliver this year,” said senior defender Fabian Lueders. “We lost good seniors last year and we couldn’t keep up on that level. I still think it was a great year. We had double-digit wins. Overall, I enjoyed this year as well.”
The team lost a total of seven seniors following the 2017 season, compared to the six they had this year. In addition, the roster was comprised of nine incoming freshmen.
While the season may not have reached the extremely high expectations, senior goalkeeper Wiktor Lasota, who accumulated 63 saves in 17 games, still felt that significant credit was owed to the coaching staff for helping the team reach 10 wins.
“I want to say thanks to the coaches,” said Lasota. “It’s not easy to be with a team that has great potential but doesn’t show it in the results sometimes. To stick with us, to encourage us, and keep motivating us to do better means a lot.”
When asked which players have stood out this season, sophomore midfielder Tim Siegfried was one of the first teammates mentioned.
“We have to mention Tim Siegfried who scored 16 goals this year,” said Lueders. “He was definitely a good striker for us this year.”
Over the course of the season, Siegfried led the team in goals (16), assists (four), points (36) and shots (61).
Lasota also praised the class of freshman teammates, and hinted that he would continue to follow their careers despite this season being his last with the team.
“I’m proud of every single freshman…a few of them were in our starting 11,” said Lasota. “I’m super excited for their next year. The work they put in this season was impressive.”
The Sea Lions dropped their season finale last Saturday in Azusa Pacific to the undefeated PacWest champions in a 3-2 overtime loss. Seniors who officially played their final game in a Sea Lions uniform included Lasota, Lueders, defender Matias Rodriguez, defender Jacob Skattner, forward and midfielder Finn Tiedemann, and forward Indiana Fuller.