Soccer team stays strong amidst season postponement


JCU Sports Information

Senior Michael Adelman propels back for a kick at Don Shula Stadium.

Jack O'Rourke, The Carroll News

John Carroll University senior Mike Adelman breathes soccer. He is not a first-generation futboller, nor is he the first of his siblings to play the world’s sport. 

“Soccer is in our blood,” said Adelman. “It is such a big part of our family. My dad played soccer, as did my older brothers and my older sister. For me, I began when I was 4 or 5.”

Adelman, a Canton native, stresses the importance of the soccer team staying together despite the COVID-19 pandemic. For some teams, it would kill all morale to have a season with high expectations postponed, but the best teams survive. 

“A big thing we’ve been talking about is just constantly working hard,” said Adelman. “This was supposed to be one of our best years in a while, as we have great talent and some very good incoming players. It hurt some people’s motivation when we heard the news the season would be postponed, but through GroupMe and Zoom meetings, we have been able to stay together and be there for each other and have fun while keeping the connection and being distant.”

Adelman stressed the hard work that was necessary for the soccer Streaks throughout the pandemic and the ensuing months. The Blue Streaks have not used these last few months as a vacation.

“Our team has a workout packet that the coaching staff and a few players created for us,” said Adelman. “We’ve been working out on our own, but we’ve been trying to preach the goal of ‘When we do play again, we should be the same as we left.’ For the local guys, we have been playing 3v3, 4v4, and 5v5 with lower numbers of people against each other, at parks, to get touches and stay fit.

When the team returns to play, expect nothing different than what has been seen by the prominent program the past few seasons, says Adelman. 

“We are used to being one of the best teams in the OAC,” he said. “This isn’t a knock on the OAC, we are just used to the pressure of being one of the better teams. We know we will receive our opponent’s best shot every single game and that they will give us everything they have. The coaching staff has us ready and prepared the same way for every game because we know every team in the OAC is capable of a great game. We handle the pressure and know what it means to be in this situation.” 

As for Adelman, should the Blue Streaks be granted a full season next fall to build off this shortened spring season, he will be back in the Blue and Gold. 

“I’m planning to play as a fifth-year student next year,” said Adelman. “I hope to graduate next December and work in the sports industry. I have worked in sports information at John Carroll and hope to keep working in it somewhere.”

For as good as the Blue Streak soccer program is, they will be hungrier than ever when they next take the pitch. 

The pandemic has bonded the team and taught them to approach every game as if it were their last. In what should be a significant season for the Blue Streaks when they return, it will be expected to come the postseason that they make it even more meaningful.