After a season of ups and downs, the Muhlenberg women’s soccer team has gotten off to a roaring start this year. With Saturday’s victory against Delaware Valley, the group has not only won their first four games, but they have done so without allowing a single goal.
With conference play set to begin later this week, the team’s hot start is hopefully just the beginning. Captain Libby Juliano ‘20 insinuated that the team’s early season success can largely be attributed to the fact that no one member is carrying the team, and everyone seems to be doing what they can to come out on top, “I think it comes down to having the right team mindset,” Juliano said.
For the team’s veterans in particular, this year is about righting the ship after ending the 2018 season on a particularly disappointing note, with three consecutive losses to Centennial Conference rivals, “We all knew we wanted to do better than our record last year and starting off on the right track would be imperative.” Juliano also added that her fellow seniors have provided extra motivation for the squad, and have set the tone in that they lead by example. “They are putting their all into every game which gives the rest of the team that boost that they need to compete,” she said. The seniors’ leadership and dedication has been complemented by that of the coaching staff, who have emphasized the importance of short term goals, despite the fact that the women have a long season ahead of them, “What they are continuously telling us is to take it one game at a time and play your hardest in every game, as if it’s your last. Our mantra this season is ‘compete’ and we have taken that with us both as a team and individually in every game and training we have,” Juliano explained. This seems to be benefiting them, as the group is diligently preparing for who they play next and maintaining a near sighted approach.
In addition to significant contributions from the team’s first-year players, many returning members, such as Cece Peden ‘22 and Nadya Goldstein ‘22, have shown why they have seen upticks in playing time this season. The fact that this team has so many young assets is a promising sign of things to come over the current season and beyond. “I think our story as a team and program is just getting started.” Juliano added. “We are focusing on one game at a time and nothing else. We want to continue to strive for the goals we set during the preseason and come out strong in every competition we have. I think this season is going to be something special!”
The Lady Mules will travel to nearby Moravian on Wednesday, where they will play their first Centennial Conference showdown of the season.