Max Stanley (sophomore) scored the key goal in the men’s soccer game against Hope International University, helping win them their last non-league game of the season.
Assistant soccer coach Brian Wright said the win was a morale boost for the team as they head into conference play.
“When you win, it always helps with the confidence of the players,” Wright said.
According to Stanley, the win was the best game the team has played so far, and he was happy with his performance. Stanley said he trained with Ventura County Fusion over the summer, a pre-professional team 30 minutes away from Occidental.
“We won the national championship and I got to play with a bunch of guys who are at a great level and really helped me improve as a player,” Stanley said.
According to Wright, Stanley’s positive attitude and work ethic combine to make him a great teammate. Wright said Stanley is the type of person to always be there for his teammates.
“You know, he always brings just a happy mindset to training,” Wright said. “He works hard on and off the field, and he’s just a fun teammate to be around for the guys. Just picking the guys up, or if they need a laugh or a hug, he’s just a guy that always is just there for his teammates in any way that he can be.”
After a summer of intensive training and a great start to the season, Stanley said he has high expectations for the rest of the year.
“I want our team to be the best possible team that we can be – the best version of ourselves by the end of the season,” Stanley said.
Lizzy Kerman (junior) helped lead the women’s volleyball team during their trip to the Pacific Coast Classic, where they won two of the four games they played. At the tournament, Kerman led the team in kills. According to Kerman, the victories helped to create positive momentum for the upcoming regular season.
“I think we set the bar pretty high,” Kerman said. “We definitely had some upset wins at the tournament – beating some big teams.”
According to Kerman, the lack of air conditioning at Rush Gymnasium, where the volleyball team plays their home games, was an obstacle for the team at the start of the season.
“Our first home match last Tuesday wasn’t too good of a showing just because [of] the conditions, it was the heatwave last week and our gym doesn’t have AC,” Kerman said. “[The team] just has to find that pride and that comfort on our home court to really bring a crowd this season.”
Not only is Kerman a force on the court, but her supportive nature makes her a great teammate even outside of the sport, according to Estelle Harsh (first year).
Harsh said the women’s volleyball team has a unique “big sister, little sister” program where upperclassmen are paired with first years as a way to help them adjust to college life and assimilate to the team culture.
“The big sister is that person you go to when you have questions and you go to for support, who’s there to really just help you kind of acclimate to not even just being a college student, but a college student-athlete,” Harsh said.
Harsh, who is Kerman’s “little sister,” said that Kerman has brought great energy to the team, which has helped them outside of practice and games.
“She has been an amazing resource coming to campus even throughout the summer before I even arrived,” Harsh said. “She always has that energy that she’s there for you and for the team.”
According to Kerman, each of her teammates and coaches contributed to her standout performance at the Pacific Coast Classic.
“It’s such a team-based sport,” Kerman said. “It’s such a united game that I think every single one of our players, and our coaches too, was involved in how we performed at the tournament.”