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The Carletonian

The Carletonian

Senior Spotlight: Alex Griese

<ir="ltr" id="docs-internal-guid-085ad54f-0cf4-9246-8d50-acc462d0b027">In two weeks the men’s varsity soccer will finish their season, marking the end of senior captain Alex Griese’s four-year Carleton soccer career. For Griese, soccer at Carleton has, in many ways, shaped his college experience. He said, “It helped me grow up and mature a lot faster, both in terms of athletics and [in school]. I felt the spillover effects in the classroom…work hard and put one-hundred percent effort into everything you do.”

Although Griese has been playing the game since a very young age (he picked up his first soccer ball at age three), he did not discover his great appreciation for the sport right away. Until age eight, his primary sport was baseball. Then, his time in India reintroduced him to soccer.

Yet, he said did not find his current level of love and commitment for soccer until his junior year at Carleton. “I didn’t realize it until halfway through my junior year [that] I wasn’t putting my full-faith effort into it. Finally, I had enough guys on my butt. I got sick of them just giving me dirty looks and yelling at me. I decided I was going to try something and one day it just clicked for me. That’s what I always tell the younger guys, that you always have more to give and you have to try to maximize that, said Griese.

Like many athletes, Griese believes that sports practices “gives structure to [his] day.” He added that it is often nice to have a place to blow off steam when the academic stress of a Carleton education gets overwhelming.

Since soccer has been a part of his life for 18 years, Griese envisions soccer being a part of his life post-Carleton. He could see himself joining a recreational soccer league after taking a year off post- graduation to “let [his] body recover.” Besides taking his soccer playing abilities outside the Carleton bubble, Griese plans to use the lessons that Carleton soccer taught him over his four years in the “real world.” He explained, “[I have] a new determination to put all my effort into all my activities. [Soccer] has given me the whole put-everything-in mentality.”

For many athletes who have been involved in their respective sports since such a young age, it would not be surprising to see some type of burn-out.

According to Griese, the coaching staff has worked to build an inclusive program.  “Bob [Carlson] always talks about how every guy from the first to the last matters especially in practice. The number of times the reserve team has beat the first team in practice is astounding. It certainly speaks to the depth of our squad,” he said.

Griese will definitely miss soccer at Carleton. Among the parts of playing on the team he will miss the most is the “team camaraderie.” However, he knows that he leaves the team in good hands, and he concluded that, “Bob has developed an incredible program. He understands how to maximize talent.”

With eight wins so far this season, and one regular-season game left, a game against St. Mary’s University, Carleton men’s soccer fans should be excited for the upcoming championships. Their first postseason game will come on November 1.

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