Over half of the Albion College student body participates on one of 23 varsity sports teams on campus. The college places an emphasis on competing at a high level in the NCAA Division III while also excelling each day in the classroom.
The vast number of student athletes on campus have a multitude of backgrounds, including many unique players that often go unnoticed.
In order to truly appreciate all the student-athletes who make up Albion athletics, The Pleiad’s “Beyond the Spotlight” series features a different athlete and the impact they have had on campus.
Featured in this week’s “Beyond the Spotlight” is Chris Wallace, a senior from East Lansing, Mich. Wallace is a biology and kinesiology double major and is a part of Albion’s Institute for Healthcare Professionals. He is currently a goalkeeper for the Albion College soccer team.
Wallace could tell that Albion and the soccer team were the perfect fit for him immediately when he stepped on campus.
“I remember explaining to my Dad that I didn’t have an explanation for my decision at the time, but I knew that Albion was the school I was going to commit to,” said Wallace. “The people continue to amaze me here everyday with their continued support, kindness, and welcoming attitudes.”
During Wallace’s first year at Albion, the soccer team went through a head coaching change. This created a unique opportunity for Wallace as a young player who was one of three new recruits that school year.
“We had a very large senior class, and through their leadership and experience, we were able to make the playoffs for the first time in the history of the Albion men’s soccer program, which was an amazing feeling,” said Wallace.
Although there was great success in his first year on the team, obstacles and set-backs have prevented the team from repeating that accomplishment. Now as a senior Wallace can reflect on the current status of the team dynamic.
“I am the only member of the senior class and over two-thirds of our roster is freshman and sophomore so it’s a very strange feeling being the only senior. We are a very young, but a very talented team,” said Wallace.
Like many student-athletes, Wallace has learned a lot on the field. However, there have been other things that Wallace said he is even more grateful for.
“There is a special bond that you create with the brothers on your team after spending countless hours competing, lifting, grinding, succeeding, failing, fighting, and laughing with them,”said Wallace. “If not for my teammates and friends, I think it is safe to say I would not have made it through my 4 years here and I am eternally grateful to them.”
Wallace hopes to see his team qualify for MIAA playoffs again in the coming weeks. The young talent and culture on the team are looking for success.
“Hopefully we can put it all together and return to the playoffs for the first time since my freshman year,” said Wallace.