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Los Alamos High School 2009 graduate Will Schoonover will continue his soccer career into the college ranks.
Schoonover, a top utility player in his career who spent much of his senior season at the fullback position, is starting his preseason workouts with Hardin-Simmons University.
Schoonover finished his senior year with 7 goals and 4 assists. His 18 points made him the fifth-leading scorer on the team despite playing the majority of his 2008 minutes on the Hilltoppers’ back line.
Hardin-Simmons is a private, NCAA Division III school in Abilene, Texas, with an enrollment of around 2,400 students.
The Hardin-Simmons Cowboys’ men’s soccer program is headed by school alumni and former Cowboys’ captain Dan Heger, who will head into his seventh season as head coach.
Heger actually played at Hardin-Simmons under the direction of Will’s grandfather, Robert Schoonover.
Connections to the school, along with plenty of family in the Abeline area, were a big part of the reason Schoonover chose to attend Hardin-Simmons instead of schools in California, Arizona and New Mexico that expressed interest in his soccer services.
Schoonover, with his fullback experience, might find a role to play at Hardin-Simmons quickly this fall.
While the Cowboys finished with a decent 10-6-4 record in 2008, its defense was often leaky. During the season, it surrendered 28 goals — the Cowboys scored a total of 31 goals — including a 5-goal contest against St. Mary’s (Texas) and a 4-1 loss to Trinity College (Texas).
The Cowboys play in the American Southwest Conference, which includes several Texas schools such as Texas Lutheran, East Texas Baptist and Concordia.
In 2008, Hardin-Simmons finished tied for second in the ASC standings with Texas-Dallas at 9-2-2. The conference championship was won by Texas-Tyler, which finished a half-game ahead of both schools.
Hardin-Simmons has won men’s soccer conference titles six times since 1998, with its most recent coming in 2006.
Schoonover was a four-year letter-winner for the Hilltoppers’ varsity. He was named to the All-District and All-State teams three of those four years, highlighted by a first-team All-State selection in 2008 at his fullback position.