Los Angeles Times: Soccer Team Helps Westmont College Rise from the Ashes

by University Relations

On Monday afternoon, a crowd surrounded the Azusa Pacific soccer field as the APU and Westmont College men’s soccer teams met to compete for the GSAC tournament, with the winner securing a spot in the NAIA national tournament.

The game, originally scheduled for Saturday, had been postponed due to the Tea Fire, which devastated parts of the Westmont campus and destroyed several faculty and staff homes. It was a situation unlike any other: two schools, one looking to support the other in the midst of tragedy; two soccer teams, coached by brothers, one who just lost his home to fire; and a game that could mean the end of a season, or the chance to move ahead.

For Westmont, this game marked a new beginning. They fought hard on the field and came away with a 2-0 win, and a spot in the national tournament.

Los Angeles Times sports columnist Bill Plaschke covered the game. “This is how the healing always begins, doesn’t it? A community torn by tragedy searches for a reason to find each other. A group of athletes reaches beyond itself to become that reason,” he wrote.

Read the entire column: Nothing more to lose

Additional game coverage:

Santa Barbara Independent: Fired-Up Westmont Wins Conference Championship

Westmont Athletics: Emotion-Charged Warriors Win GSAC Crown