Former player joins GVSU coaching staff

GVL/Kevin Sielaff
#9 Kaely Schlosser

GVL/Kevin Sielaff #9 Kaely Schlosser

Mason Tronsor

The idiom “the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree” has begun to manifest itself on the Grand Valley State soccer field. GVSU head coach Jeff Hosler has put an effort forward to keep former Lakers around the program, and his coaching tree has begun to take root.

On Sept. 18 and 20, the Lakers had Alumni Weekend and hosted both Findlay and Lake Erie. Nearly 400 spectators and former players came out to support the current GVSU squad. Some of the alumnae gave a pre-game speech.

For one of the alumna in the locker room, giving a pre-game pep talk is now routine.

Kaely Schlosser is currently serving her first season as a volunteer assistant coach for the GVSU women’s soccer team. She works primarily with the back line of defense, but because of her history of playing multiple positions, she can assist wherever needed. Schlosser played for the Lakers last season and was a part of GVSU’s second consecutive national championship.

Schlosser’s road to GVSU was unconventional. She began her career at Central Michigan, where she flourished as an attacking player for the Chippewas. Schlosser received All-Conference honors her freshman year and helped lead her team to a conference tournament title. She proceeded to start 37 of 43 matches over the next two seasons.

“It was a roller coaster experience,” Schlosser said. “There were a lot of highs and lows, but I loved it there.”

In her senior year in 2013, she injured her knee which forced her to miss the entire season. She was granted a medical redshirt, and earned an extra year of eligibility. Schlosser decided to use that year of eligibility to transfer to GVSU.

“The transfer was already cemented through (former GVSU coach Dave DiIanni),” Hosler said. “It was probably his final act securing her through the transfer window at the end of the semester.”

Schlosser played in all 26 games for the Lakers, but not in her regular role. Instead of her usual attacker position, Hosler decided to play her as a center defender. She instantly became a vocal leader on the back line for the Lakers.

That season, Schlosser also earned All-GLIAC Second Team and NCSAA All-Midwest Region Second Team honors. Her big moment as a Laker was her game-winning goal in the NCAA Midwest Regional Championship against No. 3 Wisconsin-Parkside in Somers, Wisconsin on the road to the national title.

After her playing career, she joined Hosler’s coaching staff as a volunteer assistant. The transition from player to coach isn’t an easy process, but Schlosser has adjusted admirably.

“I was here for first semester, but moved home during second semester,” Schlosser said. “This helped my transition because if I was with them every day and then had to coach them it would have been a lot more challenging.”

Schlosser brings experience and knowledge to a team with just four seniors. Her playing background and success have allowed her to pass on knowledge of the game to the current Lakers.

“There’s a line that was drawn and she gained the respect last year,” said junior Marti Corby. “She has been really professional but we can still hang out and we still have our jokes.”

Corby and Schlosser were teammates last year, however the dynamic has changed as now one is playing, while the other coaches. Forming a new relationship between former teammates-turned-wards is difficult on anyone in Schlosser’s situation, but, taking it day-by-day, she’s making it work.