Sophomore player leads Simpson goals

by Erich Bogner, reporter

After 15 years of playing, soccer is in sophomore Mackenzie Stump’s blood. Everyday she goes to class with her hair up and pre-wrap in it, already looking like she is about to go to practice.

This season Stump has scored four of Simpson’s seven goals. As somebody used to playing center back, this is strange. Stump would score occasionally when she was younger, but this is a season high for her. Three of her goals came from penalty kick, and the last one came at the very end of a game against Buena Vista that ended in a tie. 

Stump started the season as an attacking midfielder, but was moved to center back after Lauren Stillman was injured. Stump has also played forward during her time at Simpson. She has said Coach Sander will play her wherever he needs her.

When Stump is in, she is consistently making a difference. Whether she is leading as a captain, or if she is just motivating and encouraging her teammates. She is a very good decision-maker in the heat of the moment on the soccer field allowing her to be an effective leader.

“She makes other players stronger and more confident when she’s around them. So as long as she does that and tells them what to do, I think we’re going to be a stronger team altogether,” said head coach Ryan Sander

Stump loves soccer because it is unpredictable; she enjoys the excitement of seeing what happens and how the team plays. She enjoys seeing how they play because she is on the team, but also because she is close to her teammates.

This kind of atmosphere is exactly what brought Stump to Simpson. When she came here on a visit, the soccer team accepted her and was very welcoming. Other colleges were not as welcoming and did not have the family atmosphere the Simpson soccer team has.

Many families have traditions, and the Simpson women’s soccer team is no different. Stump has a very scheduled pre game routine.

“I always have to have my hair braided and I listen to music for a half an hour before a game. I have to do the same warmup with the same person and, right before the whistle, I do my own routine of stretching. You’ll see everyone out there just looking at the ball, and I’ll be kicking in the air and jumping up and down because I’m very superstitious when it comes to soccer.”

Off the field, Stump likes to spend time with her friends and talk about soccer. She enjoys watching professional soccer when teams that she knows are playing and her favorite team is the USA national team.

She has also been known to be goofy and tell out of the box jokes. Her close friend, teammate and house-mate Meredith Harrison said, “She does this creepy thing where she peers out from behind a wall and makes the weirdest face possible at me when I’m least expecting it. She’s a goofy girl.”

Determined and hard working on the field, Stump is well respected by her teammates. A goofy jokester off the field, Stump is loved by her friends.