McKeesport, Pa. - Proceeding the 2015-16 Penn State University Athletic Conference championship game late last fall, the Penn State Greater Allegheny men's soccer team welcomed newly appointed head coach Walt Sullinger to the head of the team into action through the upcoming school year.
"I am extremely grateful to be able to coach soccer in the area where I grew up," explained the McKeesport native. "Getting involved with the community and opening the door for local student-athletes is what I am most excited about."
The Greater Allegheny men's team returns two PSUAC All-Conference selections in senior midfielder Gerardo Diaz-Perez (Mayaguez, Puerto Rico/Immaculate Reception Academy) and junior midfielder Marin Marina (Pittsburgh, Pa./Baldwin) as junior midfielder Nick Andrews (Penn Hills, Pa./South Allegheny) returns as the continued seven assists last year, good enough for fourth overall in the PSUAC.
"We are growing a lot from last year to this season, not only with different leadership, but also with a lot of new faces. The nice thing about school being back in session is that the kids that may have been interested in soccer before that didn't come out for the team are coming down to practice, approaching the team on how to get involved. It's really a nice environment to be in; such a warm community feel," concluded Walt.
With season coming up right around the corner, the men are alleged to get to work for the Lions. "Every player will get their time on the field this season, as we better prepare as a whole to pave our way to the end of the season."
Sullinger continued, "The two scrimmages ahead of us are going to tell us a lot about ourselves and where we stand. We plan on having high energy as we find ourselves on the field. The new players will bring effort, drive and determination to test the veterans."
With coach Sullinger comes assistant coach Sean Richter. "Sean is a highly respected and educated coach in the area. He will make an excellent contribution to the constantly adapting men's team and I look forward to embarking upon this journey with him."
Thursday ushers University of Pitt at Greensburg to Francis McClure for s 4 p.m. scrimmage to ring in the new athletic year. "UPG is a tough team in a tough conference and look forward to seeing where we stand with them. They first scrimmage of the season is for identifying who wants to play soccer," extended Sullinger.
"The outcome of the two scrimmages do not matter; it's all about improving what we see from them and molding ourselves into machines come PSUAC action."