Just five minutes into the Sept. 8 match, Governor Mifflin graduate Madison Clemens scored her second goal of the season. The goal helped the Boston University women’s soccer team defeat Akron, 3-2. It was another big goal for the B.U. senior who now has 16 career goals for the Terriers.
She’s coming off a junior season in which she scored eight goals in 19 games and was named to the America East All-Conference First Team, and to the NSCAA All-Northeast Regional Third Team.
“My soccercareer at B.U.has been everything I could have ever hoped for so far,” said Clemens. “I’ve been able to be a part of a consistently winning and very successfulteam. Thus far we haven’t lost a conference game since I got here. I’ve met teammates who are now some of my closest friends and I have been able to travel all over the United States to play some of the top teams in the country.”
Her eight goals last season led the team, nobody else scored more than four. She will be counted on to score even more goals this year. That will be her role on the team. For her, that isn’t an easy concept to grasp. She has never worried too much about scoring goals. She just wants her team to win - who scores the goal is not important.
“I’ve never thought of myself as a selfish player, meaning I truly never know how many points I’m accumulating or how many assist or goals I have scored, it has just never been my mindset,” said Clemens. “I always have put the team first. This season I feel like I’ve come to terms with this mindset a bit differently, after reflecting on my time playing so far and talking with my coach about my role on my team this year. As a forward, scoring is essentially ‘my job’, so personally, my goal this year is to score more goals than I did last year and continue to deliver for my team when we need goals at big moments in games.”
While at Governor Mifflin High School, Clemens was a three-sport athlete, staring in field hockey, basketball and soccer. In her four years on the Lady Mustang soccer team, she scored 48 goals, including 20 in her senior season. She was a two-time All-Berks honoree and made the 2010 Pennsylvania All-State First Team as a midfielder. She was also the 2010 Berks County Player of the Year.
“I remember having fun and being crazy with my best friends,” said Clemens. “Ultimately in my senior year we did win a county championship which was what, since before high school, my class had always wanted to accomplish. We played hard and competed, but the most fun part was definitely joking around, being relaxed, carefree and just playing soccer for fun.”
She also played club soccer while in high school, and that’s where she really got serious about the sport. That’s where she played against the higher level players to help get her prepared for Division 1 college soccer. Still, it was a tough transition to the D-1 level.
“Going into a division one program as a freshman is a huge step up from club,” she said. “The speed of play is exceptionally faster, the players are exceptionally stronger, and the physical demands and time commitment is something players haven’t experienced before college. It’s essential to put in a lot of hard work and resilience to assimilate into the style of play and work ethic of your team.”
It took time. She appeared in 15 games during her freshman year at B.U. and had only one shot on goal. By her sophomore season, she got more of a chance to play, starting all 23 games, and her game began to get better. She was third on the team in scoring with six goals, and was named the team’s Most Improved Player.
One of her goals was the team’s second goal of the America East semifinals and her team defeated Binghamton, 2-1.
Then six days later, she scored another goal to help B.U. defeat Albany, 2-0, and win the team’s fifth straight league championship.
Terriers finished the regular season with a perfect 8-0-0 record, but was banned from the America East Tournament because the school was set to move to the Patriot League this season.
Last month, Clemens got some good news before the season ever began. She was selected as the Patriot League’s Offensive Player of the Year.
“I feel honored to be recognized with a title like this, especially in a conference I haven’t even played in yet,” said Clemens. “But truly what happens during and after the season is what matters the most. So I really look to this title as a motivator to have a personally successful year aiding my team in anyway I can to make it as successful as possible.”
This will be her last season on the team, so she wants to make the most of it.
“I’m very fortunate to have continued to play soccer at such a high level and at a great school,” she said. “My career at B.U. isn’t over yet, but so far the experience has been fantastic. My team is awesome and the city of Boston is unbelievable. We’re looking forward to competing in the Patriot League this year and having another successful season.”
Clemens is a business major at Boston University, concentrating in accounting and law. She hopes to attend law school next fall.