Hannah Doyle is a senior communications major from Silverton, Oregon, who plays center midfielder for the Lady Barons soccer team.
Soccer has always been a big part of Doyle’s life. In fact, her love for the sport began when she was just four years old.
“I started really young, but I didn’t start playing club until I was eight,” said Doyle. “That’s just always the way it’s been.”
Doyle played soccer every change she got. “My brothers and I would get up at the crack of dawn, rain or shine, to go play soccer in the backyard until my mom would call us in to start homeschooling,” Doyle said. “We would be right back out there after we finished our work until it got dark, and my dad would bring out these big construction lights, so we could see the ball and keep playing.”
Now, as a senior Lady Barons soccer player, Doyle has built up plenty of additional memories from the past years upon which to reminisce.
Doyle’s position as the center midfielder requires a high sense of awareness at all times since she must play both offense and defense. She is essentially the glue that holds the team together on the field.
Without precise plays and extreme focus, transitioning from offense to defense and vice versa would be impossible. Doyle, however, attacks this tall task with ease.
“I play a position that’s a link between both offense and defense, so room for error is very minimal. … I’ll engage in the attack when we need numbers up, passing through balls and swinging the ball constantly until we can find an opening in the opponent’s defense to slide it through to the attacking midfielders or strikers,” said Doyle.
Doyle emphasized her coach’s direction for the team this year. The team’s goals encompass not only soccer performance but also growth as individuals.
“Our coach constantly tells us not to be satisfied but to always strive to be better,” Doyle said. “So, the team goal is always to win the conference championship. A more important goal for us is that we are always striving to become better women with every lesson we learn on the field, whether it be a lesson in humility from a loss or a lesson in discipline from playing composed down to the very last minute in overtime.”
That drive to grow in soccer and as a person comes not only from her coaches but also from her family, especially her parents.
“My family is probably my biggest inspiration,” she said. “My parents always gave us the opportunity to try something new, and they always helped us to reach our goals, even at their own expenses. My family has taught me so much through their words and their actions. They taught me about perseverance, hard work, humility and selflessness. I owe a lot of who I am to them. I’ll always be grateful for them.”
Students can cheer on Hannah Doyle and the Lady Barons soccer team Saturday, Oct. 5 at 3 p.m. as they take on the University of Penn State–Behrend.