Madden sees unity

Northern Kentucky University’s men’s soccer goalie Nate Madden has seen a lot of changes to the soccer program in his four years with the Norse.

“When I came here as a freshman, everybody just showed up and didn’t really care about the team,” Madden said.

“Now, as a senior, I think there is a lot of team unity.”

The soccer team has gone from being a rebuilding project to recently becoming one of the teams to earn a spot in the Division II men’s soccer top 25 poll, complete with second-year head coach John Basalyga.

“I definitely feel a lot closer to the guys than I did when I was a freshman,” Madden said.

In 12 games so far this season, Madden has compiled eight shutouts. His record currently stands at 8-2-2.

The most memorable shutout in Madden’s record is the 1-0 victory that Madden recorded against Findlay University back in August.

It was the second straight season that the Norse defeated Findlay, a team that made it to the Division II Final Four one season ago.

“Some of the things I want to accomplish this season is to do well in the GLVC tournament, and hopefully set the shutout and lowest goals against average record,” Madden said.

The most saves Madden has recorded during a game was on Sept. 21 when he made nine saves in the victory over then ninth ranked Mercyhurst College (Pa.).

“It was nice to be in the Division II soccer poll, because I never have been on a team that was ranked, but it’s really just an early season indicator,” said Madden.

“But it was a nice change to go from a team that finished last year 4-9-3 to a team that’s ranked in the top 25.”

The Norse men’s soccer team began a full slate of games against GLVC competitors this past weekend, starting with the University of Southern Indiana.

The Norse won’t face another non-conference opponent until Oct. 17 when they play Truman State.

“Right now we’re just taking it one game at a time,” Madden said.