The leaves have fallen and the rain is upon the community in Forest Grove as the days grow shorter and daylight becomes scarce. Winter is fast approaching which means fall sports at Pacific are beginning to wrap up, as some Boxers strap on the black and red for the very last time.
“I love everybody here, I love this school. I don’t regret anything soccer-wise or school-wise, just everything. I love Pacific and the people here,” said Emma Gusman, a senior midfielder for the Boxer Women’s Soccer team.
Gusman’s experience at Pacific has led her to think about taking an extra year of eligibility, but her plans to attend Pharmacy school next fall means she may have played her last game in a Boxer uniform.
The Boxers had an up and down season on the pitch, checking in with a 6-12-1 record at the end of the season, but Gusman was pleased with the way the team persevered throughout their 19 game schedule.
“I think that we performed really well considering that this was our first real season back, and we had a way better record than any of the other three years that I’ve been here,” said Gusman.
The Boxers matched up against Whitman College on Sunday, November 7th at 11:00 am for a rainy senior day. Both teams showed ruggedness and heart while playing in what felt like a monsoon, but neither team managed to score in regulation. The Boxer’s last hope for victory was shattered by the foot of Whitman’s junior forward Kayla Gustafson, who rattled in the deciding penalty kick in the 103’rd minute of action.
“I think because it was senior day people really pulled it together to celebrate the seniors who were leaving and make sure they had a good send off,” said senior midfielder Elizabeth Blair.
Blair, a senior for the Boxers who played meaningful minutes and started all 19 games this year, has opted to exercise her fifth year of eligibility in the fall of 2022.
“Our coach is working on recruiting a lot more people, but I think everyone is super motivated right now,” said Blair. “I think next year we’ll have a better season and just get progressively better.”
Although the 6-12-1 record does not look pretty on paper, the resoluteness of this Boxer squad is sure to carry them through the off season as they look to shock the Northwest Conference in the fall of 2022. — Patrick Muskat