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Marisa Adelman closing in on William Paterson Women’s Soccer all-time career goals record

Playing basketball for two years and one year of lacrosse did not cut it for Marisa Adelman. Since she was four years old, soccer was her favorite sport. It stuck with her, because she had been playing it the longest.

From Branchburg, Adelman attended Somerville High School where she set the single-season record for goals with 32 in her senior year and helped the Pioneers win the Skyland Conference Championship.

In addition Adelman was named second-team All-State, first team All-Conference, first-team All-Area, first-team All-Group 3 selection and Team MVP. During her senior year at Somerville, Adelman played club soccer as well for the Princeton Soccer Association, also leading that team in scoring. 

Furthermore, Adelman ended up enjoying success in track and field. She was a four-year letter winner, earning first-team All-Skyland honors in the 100, 200 and 400 meters. Off the field, Adelman excelled in the classroom as she was named to the National Honor Society and High Honor Roll.

“A great atmosphere in the Princeton Soccer Association, the coaches were very supportive and preparation for college,” said Adelman. “Somerville High School had a lot of great athletes that showed how good of a reputation they have. My Mom has been very supportive since she competed in sports and understands the student-athlete life. She always came to my games especially with track in high school, giving me advice on how to reach my goals. I have a sister and brother with my sister playing field hockey in high school.”

“Track and field helped me stay in soccer shape and since most of my goals come from me being fast,” Adelman explained. “It helped build muscle, character and achieve my goals. Balancing out academics and athletics proved I’m good with time management, knowing my priorities and being able to schedule everything.”

When it came to making a decision on attending college, Adelman said she wanting to stay close to home as tuition and distance were the main factors. Zeroing in on William Paterson University, Adelman said choosing the school was made easier due to Women’s Soccer Head Coach Keith Woods.

“Keith was very supportive and gave me the resources I needed to get a job on campus and the little things added up to this is the school where I wanted to be at,” she said. “Having a personal relationship as compared to other schools where there are 35 to 40 girls on a team.”

In her freshman year, Adelman lived up to all the expectations leading the Pioneers in scoring with 19 goals, 42 points and three-game winning goals while being named the ECAC (Eastern Conference Athletic Conference) Rookie of the Year and NJAC (New Jersey Athletic Conference) Co-Rookie of the Year. The Pioneers finished with a 14-61 record and reached the ECAC Metro and NJAC Tournaments, winning one game.

“My freshman year I did not take too much responsibility for myself even though I was doing well in soccer and considered myself a leader,” Adelman said. “I did not really expect those results because no one knew who I was when I came in and the team was very supportive in welcoming me. There was good competition and I wanted to compete for a starting spot.”

There was no sophomore jinx for Adelman, despite though she was limited to 14 games due to injuries. Despite the missed time, she still led the team in scoring, registering 14 goals, seven assists and 35 points. She was selected to the All-NJAC First Team and NJAC Offensive Player of the Week three times.

“I missed a few games due to a concussion and knee injury,” explained Adelman. “I still was able to produce those results and proved I was able to work hard and make the most out of the 14 games played.”

Even with William Paterson ending up below .500 her junior season, Adelman proved to be the bright spot as she started all 17 games, recording 17 goals and 37 points that set numerous program records. Named NJAC Co-Offensive Player of the Year and to the All-NJAC First Team.

So far in her senior year, Adelman is off to another solid start, tallying nine goals and 21 points. She has received back-to-back NJAC Offensive Player of the Week honors. Adelman is eight goals away from breaking the university’s career goals record. Amanda Kurdyla holds the record with 66.

Currently, the Pioneers are 5-3-2 and 1-1-1 in the NJAC.

“The main goal was to break the career goal record, I am only eight away and it’s something I want to do,” said Adelman. “When I came into this season, I was 17 goals away and figured I was able to score 17 last year and I would be able to do it again. It definitely helps to have a better record this year compared to previous years and helps build up the confidence. We are more into practices, knowing we are good and capable to accomplishing.”

“This is my last year, the team is doing really well and those goals just don’t come from me but everyone putting in the effort,” explained Adelman. “I know my role on the team is to help out on the offensive side and get it done in 90 minutes or more. Pretty much all the seniors have played since their freshman year and some have started. Having a good core group throughout all the four years and new people coming in and filling those spots. We have a strong foundation and reputation for the underclassmen when we leave this year.”

“Coach Woods has always put the team first and cares about our success on and off the field and there for us regarding academics. He pushes us to be the best and potential we have and working hard.”

“There is a high level of competition in the NJAC with TCNJ, Montclair State and Rowan,” said Adelman. “All have good reputations and top athletes going there. Some conferences have a one really good team and rest are average but here in the NJAC everyone is pretty much equal and anything is possible. We definitely want to make the postseason and play as many games as possible.”

“We want to play well at home because it’s our field and have a much tougher schedule because we are away a lot more,” Adelman added. “Our parents and friends come out to watch us and we want to make every game count and put on a good show. The administration always comes out to our games and puts up information on social media so more people will come out to watch us play. They want us do the best we can and represent school well.”

Majoring in Accounting, Adelman is focusing on life after graduation next spring, applying for graduate school and studying for the CPA exam. During her four years at William Paterson, Adelman has been recognized for her outstanding work in academics. She was inducted into the Chi Alpha Sigma national student-athlete honor society, is a member of 2017 CoSIDA (College Information of Direcors) Academic All-District 2 Teams, a member of the Honors College from 2016-19 and was named to the Academic All-NJAC Honorable Mentions in 2017-18 and 2018-19.

“Hard work does really pay off and pretty much you can do anything you want,” Adelman said. “If you want to be successful on and off the field, you have to put in the hours to make it happen.”

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Sunil Sunder Raj

Since July of 2014 Sunil Sunder Raj has been with In The Zone. Sunil has experience covering minor league baseball, high school and college sports. A beat writer for the Rockland Boulders for six years, Ramapo College men’s basketball for four years, NJIT men’s basketball and Seton Hall women’s basketball. Now focusing on feature articles about athletes, coaches and sports media professionals. A graduate of Ramapo College of New Jersey with a bachelor of arts degree in journalism.
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