Men’s soccer season starts with 12 new players

Men’s soccer season is back at Purdue Northwest and the Pride is ready for their first game at Lemont on Aug. 31 at 7:30 p.m.

Last season, the Pride competed at the NAIA level as one of 32 teams out of 200 to qualify for the National Championships for the second year in a row. Ryan Hayes, head coach, thought the team did well in the championships despite losing to Davenport in the opening round.

This year’s roster has lost players Jawayne Spence, Nana Annoh and Sergio Reyes. Hayes said all three of the lost players played a massive role in building the program to where it is today. However, 12 new players have been added to the team.

“The biggest thing that the boys are working on is playing together. With 12 new guys and 14 returning players, the guys just need a lot of time to play with each other and build relationships,” Hayes said.

Hayes said players will miss less class time because most games are on Fridays and Sundays, but the opposing teams will be more challenging now that the team is playing in the Division II level.

“The Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference is one of the most competitive conferences in the league so we’re excited for the challenge,” Hayes said.