Lions suffer yet another tough season

The Missouri Southern Lions soccer team ended its 2014 season with a 1-0 loss to the University of Central Oklahoma Bronchos Nov. 2 in Edmond, finishing the fall campaign with an overall record of 5-11-2. The Lions failed to make the MIAA post-season playoff tournament for the second straight season. Head coach Alese Woolard has yet to turn in a winning season since taking over the program in 2010.

“The season was disappointing with the win loss record, but seeing the growth of the team will help them for next year,” said assistant coach Chris Leshinski.  “Next year we need to come out hungry in conference and fight. We have to get stronger technically if we want to compete for a top four seed.”

The Lions will lose five key players from this season’s roster to graduation and will need to retool their roster in order to compete next season.

“The season didn’t end up as we had hoped … but as far as the emotional side, this team is my family and I love these girls so much,” said senior midfielder Kelsey Haist. “They made my senior year unforgettable with so many memories that I will cherish and hold on to. I am very proud of the girls too, because, yes, we drew a tough hand with injuries and games just not falling our way sometimes, but we never quit, and we never gave up, and today, our last game of the season, every single person played with heart.  As a senior and captain, that is all I can ask for.”

Despite the team’s lack of success, the players maintained a positive attitude throughout the season, fighting for one another till the end, keeping their pride in the process.

“I thought we all worked really hard this season for each other,” said freshman forward Hannah Bomar. “It wasn’t about all of the losses, it was playing with heart and for each other. Most of the games fell the wrong way and they shouldn’t have. I’m sad to see my seniors leave, but know they’ll all do great things. I’m excited for next season, and we are all proud to be Lions.”

“I’m really sad to see that we didn’t make it further, but I’m proud to be a part of this team because we always fight until the end of the game all the way through the season,” said junior midfielder Hannah Ishmael.

Through five seasons as head coach, Woolard’s overall winning percentage is a sub-par .394.