Feb. 6, 2014
GALESBURG—Carl Sandburg College men’s soccer forward Lawson Crider (Mayfield, Ky./Shattuck-St. Mary’s) on Thursday signed a National Letter of Intent to play next season at UAB, becoming the first Chargers player to move on to an NCAA Division I program.
Crider shattered the Sandburg record book in his first season with the Chargers on his way to being named to the first team of the National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA) Men’s Junior College Division I All-America and All-North Region teams.
Crider set Sandburg records for goals (23), assists (11) and points (57) in a season, and his totals in those categories were tied for sixth, tied for 27th and fifth overall, respectively, in the nation last fall. He led the Chargers with 28 shots on goal and five game-winning goals. Crider also scored in 14 of Sandburg’s 20 matches and had eight multi-goal games. Three of his multi-goal games were hat tricks, including a school-record four goals in the Chargers’ win Aug. 26 at Emmaus Bible College.
Crider’s play helped Sandburg finish with a 15-5-0 record, the best season in program history. The Chargers also claimed their first Region IV Champions Division title with a 6-1-0 record, won their first-ever postseason contest and advanced to the semifinals of the Region IV tournament.
“This past year has had a few ups and downs, but for the most part we came together as a team when we really had to,” Crider said. “I feel like I grew as a player, and our entire team grew individually as players as well.”
UAB finished last season 12-5-1 overall and was ranked as high as No. 8 in the nation. Crider adds to a Blazers offense that led the NCAA in scoring last fall at 2.39 goals per game. UAB has made seven NCAA tournament appearances, most recently in 2012.
“I decided to go to UAB for a high level of competition. Fifty percent of (UAB coach) Mike Getman’s players make it professionally, and he tells me I have the right stuff,” Crider said. “They’re getting a striker and a confident player that’s ready to come in and be confident with his team, have fun with his teammates and win a national championship.”
Carl Sandburg College men’s soccer player Lawson Crider, center, signs his National Letter of Intent to play next season at UAB. At left is Sandburg athletic director Mike Bailey, and at right is Sandburg interim coach Kokou Kaho.