Augie Talks with Grace Sigler

Sarah Major

  1. When did you start playing soccer?

“I started playing soccer when I was eight years old, like every other little kid. I started on a parks and rec team and then around the age of 12 I started playing more seriously, like I got onto a club team.”

  1. What made you want to play soccer in college?

“There was a time in my club team where I decided I was done playing soccer. When I started picking colleges I wanted a big school, and if I went to a big school I knew I wasn’t going to make it playing soccer, so I kind of edged away from that. And then it got to the end of season and I realized how much I was going to miss it, so then I ended up changing that I didn’t want a big school anymore and I wanted a small school where could play.”

  1. What made you choose Augustana?

“Originally I wanted those big schools and I wanted to go a little further from home. As it got closer and closer to really needing to decide on a college, I started visiting a lot of smaller, more local schools. Then I visited here and it was the perfect fall day, like we walked through the slough, the bells were going off, and I was like, ‘There’s nothing wrong with this school except that it’s close to my house.’ So I just had to get over that, and then I started talking to the soccer coach and that started to work too, so then it was just a combination. Like they had the major I wanted, they had soccer, it was close.”

  1. You were named Academic All-District for carrying a 3.91 GPA. How do you balance schoolwork with your sport?

“It’s hard. I know how much I can handle and when. I don’t leave homework to do when I know I’m going to be traveling that day, I set [a schedule] and do the homework that morning. Sometimes I have to wake up earlier but I get it done. I feel like for a lot of people it gets hard because they leave time when they don’t have it. Like we’ll get off the bus and it’s 12:30 at night and no one’s done their homework on the bus even though they brought it. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve brought my backpack on the bus and not been able to do homework. It sucks sometimes, but you have to go straight from practice, shower, eat, then stay in the library all night till you finish your stuff.”

  1. What do you plan to do after college?

“After college I’m going to grad school. I’m in the program that’s 3-4 with optometry. And then after grad school hopefully get a job, start a family. I don’t know, I haven’t thought that far ahead. Grad school’s next, I know that.”

  1. The soccer team finished 13-3-1 this season, losing to Illinois Wesleyan in the CCIW tournament. How would you describe your team’s season?

“The beginning of the season, our motto was to just work as hard as we can and let the work override natural talent. So if we weren’t going to be more talented than the other teams, we were going to work harder. We set that model for the whole season. On our off days, we were doing team runs. I think that’s a big thing this year, everyone wanted to go out of their way to make it the best year that they could. We weren’t playing for anyone but our teammates and then that drove us to start winning games. We all are so competitive, so when we did have the few losses that we did, it hit hard and we didn’t want to feel like that again, so we just kept the mentality and kept working harder.”

  1. How would you describe your personal season?

“Most of the team worked really hard this summer, so I think just keeping that up and realizing how  good we did this season, but also we could’ve done better. We were really close to making the national tournament, and if we would just work a little bit harder, especially this off season, we have higher hopes next year coming into it.”

  1. What’s your favorite memory here at Augie?

“Probably the day of Extrav because that’s amazing and so much fun. We had soccer formal that night, so it was hanging out with everyone during the day and then taking a nap and then at night we were with the team again. That whole 24 hours was just amazing to be with everyone.”