Ferris closed its third consecutive winning season in Allendale against Grand Valley State University Nov. 2
The Bulldogs had their first shot at topppling the four-time defending champions Grand Valley in the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference championship.The Bulldogs unfortunately fell to rival Grand Valley in the semi-finals.
Even though they were dealt a disappointing loss by the GVSU Lakers, this season was an absolute success. This year was the third season in a row the Bulldogs have been in the GLIAC playoffs, each one with head coach Matt Kellogg at the reins of the team.
Matt Kellogg took over as head coach in 2009 for the Ferris State womens soccer team, and there was an immediate effect on the team. Not only did he lead them to back-to-back-to-back playoff appearances, he also changed the mentality of the players. He came in with an aggressive coaching style, instilling a winning attitude into the minds of his players.
Immediately following their 4-0 loss to GVSU in their semi-final matchup, Kellogg’s message to the team had somewhat of a “championship or bust” theme.
“I told them that this isn’t good enough,” Kellogg said. “I said that we cannot settle for anything less than a championship.”
This aggressive mindset has completely turned this team around from what they once were three years ago.
Even though they didn’t reach a championship this year, sophomore midfielder Riley Wood still thinks this season was a definite success.
“I feel like our team chemistry on and off the field improved throughout the year,” Wood said. “That really helped us push through together these last few games.”
Wood proved to be a weapon this year as she went on to lead the team with eight goals on 25 shots, second only to freshman forward Casey Shauman who had four goals and led the team with 54 shots.
“Team chemistry was definitely the biggest thing that the team improved on,” said Shauman as she thought back on the season. “I think that we were able to communicate well and had a great work ethic.”
Shauman stepped in as a freshman and started 18 out of 19 games for the Bulldogs this year, and she logged 1,130 minutes played for the season, with junior defender Amanda Foster leading the team with 1,677 minutes.
“We are going to work hard during the spring season to try and make it to the GLIAC finals next year.”
The Bulldogs look to have a solid season next year as they will return all but three players: seniors Logan DeClercq, Hillary Procunier and Kelsey Aubil. The team will have five returning seniors for next year as they look to make another run at the championship.
When asked what kind of team we are going to see next year, he simply said “a winning team.”