FCC's Bahner taking a different field on his old college campus
CINCINNATI (WKRC) - "To do it in your hometown, on the campus of where you went to school, I think is so special," said University of Cincinnati head soccer coach, Hylton Dayes.
Lakota West and UC alum Matt Bahner is home, after four years of playing professionally in Harrisburg and Jacksonville. One of the eleven new players on the team, Banher is soccer kick away from the field he played in college.
"Nippert is one of the greatest stadiums in the country in my opinion for football, for anything. And now for soccer, to see it house a professional soccer game, every other weekend... it really wasn't something I expected," Bahner said.
Not only that, but his college coach, longtime Bearcats head coach, Hylton Dayes, who had a hand in his return, has an office just a few hundred feet away.
"I don't think his goals are just to come play at FC Cincinnati. I think he has bigger goals than that. I'll be here to support him, I'll be his greatest fan. I'll let him know if I think he needs to do certain things but now he has another coach," said Dayes.
The two talk a few times a week, the Bearcats soccer team will be in attendance for Wednesday's game and coach Dayes will watch Matt play as a pro in person for the first time.
"I'll be nervous. I'm going to watch the game. Matt's been a pro now for five years. He knows what he's doing."
When he left Cincinnati to turn pro, he had one semester remaining to earn his chemical engineering degree. Matt finished it while playing for the Harrisburg City Islanders.
"I'm almost as proud of him doing that as I am of him playing professionally, because that showed he was going to finished what he started," said Dayes.
"Hes a smart guy. Everything he's said to me has come to fruition," Bahner said of his former coach.
It's good to have such a smart guy just a soccer kick away.