Mocyunas making most of chance with Marshall

Collin Mocyunas started playing soccer at age 3.
A Morgantown native, he’s is a 2017 graduate of University High.
He is now a redshirt freshman at Marshall University.
Mocyunas scored the first goal of his college career in a 4-2 win against Old Dominion.
“Scoring my first goal of my college career was an amazing feeling,” he said. “Scoring a winning goal in a huge conference match made it that much better and it really came at the perfect time.”
Mocyunas finished this season with one goal, two points, three shots and one shot on goal. He played in 17 games, including 10 starts and 1,082 total minutes.
Mocyunas said he is pleased with how his first season turned out and is excited for next year.
“This season was a great experience for me,” he said. “Starting and playing most of the season as redshirt freshman was great and I learned a lot.
“Our team went through a lot of ups and downs this season, but with almost the exact same team returning next season I think we have a lot to look forward to.”
Mocyunas said playing soccer at Marshall is way different than at UHS.
“I was lucky enough to be on a great high school soccer team, but the level in our conference and in Division I soccer in general is a whole different world,” he said.
As a Hawk, Mocyunas was named West Virginia Midfielder of the Year. He earned First Team All-State honors. He scored three goals in the West Virginia North-South All-Star game. He was a member of the National Honor Society.
But there was another experience Mocyunas got to have. He played for the Arsenal FC U19 team and was named player of the year.
“Playing for Arsenal was great for me,” he said. “Playing at the highest level of club soccer with one of the best teams in country prepared me extremely well for college soccer.”
When he was younger, Mocyunas looked up to Ronaldinho, a professional soccer player from Brazil, and Lionel Messi, of Argentine.
“As a kid I loved watching players like Ronaldinho and Messi,” he said. “I don’t really have one favorite player anymore, but Manchester United is and will always be my favorite team.”
Growing up a Thundering Herd fan played a big part in Mocyunas’ decision to attend Marshall.
“Living in Ravenswood, when I was younger, I was always a fan of Marshall sports,” he said. “When I was given the opportunity to play here and represent the state as a West Virginia athlete in a top Division I conference I couldn’t pass that up.”
“Marshall is a great school overall. The community is extremely close here and I am part of an amazing team. All of that combined with the opportunity to get a top-notch education is all I could ask for.”
Mocyunas said Huntington and Morgantown are somewhat different.
“Even though the cities are similar in size, Huntington definitely has a much smaller community type of feel,” he said. “Since I have started school here, Huntington has become home to me and now I’m lucky enough to call both places home.”
Mocyunas is majoring in criminal justice and minoring in psychology.
“My goal is to eventually become a special agent in the FBI,” he said.
Mocyunas said balancing academics and soccer can be a bit daunting.
“It is a huge challenge to focus on both school and soccer,” he said. “It has been a learning experience over the past year figuring out how to succeed in both, but we are lucky enough to have an amazing staff that gives us support to keep up with our academics.”
In his limited spare time, Mocyunas enjoys hanging out with his roommates, watching movies or playing FIFA.

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