LIBERAL, Kan. — Seward County Community College will welcome men’s and women’s soccer to the Saints Athletics lineup in August, supported in part by a $2,000 Sport Opportunity Grant from the NJCAA Foundation.
SCCC Athletic Director Dan Artamenko announced the award May 19.
“We’re excited to begin this new era in Saints athletics, and the grant from NJCAA strengthens the opportunities we can provide to our student athletes,” Artamenko said. “Our first games are set for Aug. 23 vs. Kansas City Kansas Community College. Men’s soccer coach Jaime Beltran and women’s soccer coach Derek Talcott have collected full rosters. We’re expecting great things.”
SCCC President Brad Bennett said he too is anticipating the first-ever Saints soccer season.
“The addition of these teams is a direct response to what our community wants, and we’re thrilled to introduce Saints soccer,” Bennett said. “We know that student athletes enrich the campus experience and community engagement, but even more important is the opportunity to support and change the lives of our students through education. Student athletes are known to be successful over time because of the dedication and discipline they acquire through collegiate training and competition. It’s a win for everyone.”
“Two-year collegiate sports provide student-athletes with the opportunity to further both their athletic and academic careers,” said Brian Luckett, NJCAA Foundation Executive Director. “The NJCAA Sport Opportunity Grant affords the NJCAA Foundation a pathway to continue supporting student-athletes and the member colleges who provide them with these incredible opportunities while also promoting continued growth and development throughout the organization.”
Artamenko noted that his department will continue preparations through the summer, including office assignments, the addition of a new athletic trainer, and reworked training and facilities schedules. The NJCAA funding will assist, adding to an impressive array of local and state support: the SCCC program has partnered with city of Liberal Parks and Recreation and USD 480 to share local fields for practice and competition.
“This is an exciting step forward for Saints Athletics, and it has energized us all,” Artamenko said. “By August, we’ll be ready to embrace a new era of competitive excellence at SCCC.”
About NJCAA Foundation
The mission of the NJCAA Foundation is to enhance the NJCAA national organization, student-athletes, member colleges and local communities through financial support, scholarships, program initiatives and community service.