Men’s Soccer Team Forming at SMC
Eager soccer students practiced their shooting and goal keeping on the Corsair Field last Wednesday morning, while Men’s Soccer Head Coach Tim Pierce observed the team from the sidelines, looking forward to what will be the first men’s soccer team at Santa Monica College in nearly a decade. “I am happy to be one of the people to bring men’s soccer back to Santa Monica College,” said SMC President Chui L. Tsang. “We have a great tradition with the women, so I hope that men’s soccer will be just as popular as the women’s soccer.”
According to Pierce, it took a long time to get the team back on the field because the Western States Conference wasn’t admitting any new teams. The almost 10-year-hiatus from men’s soccer was due to the team’s expulsion from the league after both a Title IX violation and a fight that the team had started.
But now that men’s soccer has returned, they are training for upcoming competitions this fall in the Western States Conference.
“I don’t have a confirmed, solidified team yet, but there are about 37 guys I’m looking at closely,” said Pierce. “And there is about a handful that I know are going to be amazing players.”
Coach Pierce has been an assistant coach for the women’s soccer team at SMC for nearly eight years, as well as doubling as the Director of Coaching for the Galaxy Alliance Soccer club.
“We are extremely excited and happy to have men’s soccer back,” said Coach Pierce. “There is a huge soccer following here in Santa Monica. I know that the president of the college is a very big fan of soccer.”
According to Pierce, SMC’s President Tsang was a real driving force in returning men’s soccer to SMC. “He really pushed it up on the agenda,” said Pierce.
For Tsang, the decision to bring back men’s soccer at SMC was easy. “After talking to students, I came to realize that this was a sport that was very popular,” said Tsang.
SMC students will now have the opportunity to play soccer, which may attract more students to the college.
“I was very disappointed that SMC didn’t have a soccer team,” said Oscar Castillo, a 20-year-old SMC student. “I had to go and find a team outside of school. I love soccer, and I wanted to play for my school; maybe now I’ll finally have a chance to.”
The first men’s soccer game is scheduled to play on August 31 against Santiago Canyon at SMC on the Corsair Field.