Men's Soccer Standout Joins Pro Ranks

GOBEARCATSDOTCOM Matt Bahner
GOBEARCATSDOTCOM
Matt Bahner
GOBEARCATSDOTCOM
Men's Soccer |

April 3, 2013

CINCINNATI – University of Cincinnati men’s soccer senior Matt Bahner ended his Bearcats career with prolific numbers. The hometown native from West Chester, Ohio and graduate of Lakota West High School played in 68 career games, starting in 65 of them. As a midfielder for UC, he scored 13 goals and tallied nine assists for 35 career points. He took 134 shots throughout his career and recorded seven game-winning goals.

While these numbers will certainly be remembered throughout the Cincinnati men’s soccer community for years to come, they will not be the last you hear from Matt Bahner.

On March 25, 2013 Bahner signed a professional contract to play with the Harrisburg City Islanders of the United Soccer League (USL) Pro Division, a partnering league with Major League Soccer. His 18-year dream of playing professional soccer had finally come to fruition.

“Playing professional soccer was a dream of mine since I was a little kid” said Bahner. “I have grown to enjoy it so much that I wanted to make it a career for myself.  Of course when I was little and growing up playing the game I did not know that I would actually get the chance to reach this dream.  I had always hoped and dreamed that it would happen, but always knew it was a very difficult challenge to endure and never knew what was going to happen during the process.”

Bahner’s dream was realized on March 25 when he put pen to paper with the Islanders. He was invited to the club’s preseason on March 10, starting his tenure as a trialist and hoping to prove himself worthy of joining the team. After two weeks of two-a-day practices and three preseason games, the Islanders extended him the contract offer.

The Harrisburg City Islanders play in the USLPro Division, which has a direct link with the MLS, working together and feeding players into the major league. This season, the Islanders will begin a direct partnership with Major League Soccer’s Philadelphia Union.


 

 

When asked what he is looking forward to most about playing professionally, Bahner cited continuing to play the game he loves. “I am very honored to call myself, and be among the category of professional athletes” said Bahner. “But I don't want this to be the end, just the beginning.  I am looking forward to being a part of a great organization that has great management, coaches, and players.  I am hoping to continue to improve and get better as a player and help the team in any way that I can in our pursuit to win a championship.”

The flank midfielder gives a lot of credit to UC head coach Hylton Dayes and the Bearcats’ program for preparing him for his professional career. “Playing for Coach Dayes helped me prepare for the next step, because he always challenged me to be a better person, player, teammate, and leader” said Bahner. “Playing for UC helped me prepare for the next level, because of the BIG EAST competition and the quality of players you were playing with and against day in and day out. The high pace at which you had to play the game, both mentally and physically, was definitely something that helped me get to the next level.”

As for the UC coaching staff, Dayes expressed his excitement for Bahner after the signing. “We are delighted that Matt has signed to play for the Harrisburg City Islanders in the USL Pro Division. He has worked extremely hard to prepare for this opportunity and I know he will do well. We will miss him in our program. He has been a true Bearcat and a joy to coach.”

While the UC captain did well to lead his team to three BIG EAST Championships during his time in Cincinnati, he knows the competition will be much stingier in the big leagues. He understands that the pace of play and the quality of soccer will be vastly different from what he experienced in college. “There is always a learning curve when it comes to new things and I am still working through that” Bahner lamented. “One key difference in playing professionally is the consistency that you must bring to the field each and every day as a professional player”.

Bahner is now looking forward to a lengthy career as a professional soccer player and excited to see where his journey takes him. But at the end of the day, he knows that he owes much of his success to the Bearcats family that supported and encouraged him along the way. “I just want to thank UC, the Athletic department, Hylton Dayes and the men's soccer coaching staff, all of my teammates throughout my five years as a player, the training staff and everyone else at UC who has helped me in some way reach my dream of playing professionally” Bahner said. “I could not have done it without all of you and will strive to continue to live up to the Bearcats way.”

-GoBEARCATS.com-

    Cincinnati Enquirer

    Gunner Kiel impresses at UC football's spring game

    Cincinnati Enquirer

    Youthful UC can make its own history next season

    Cincinnati Enquirer

    UC's defense makes statement in latest scrimmage

    FanIQ.com

    Remember Gunner Kiel? He's Ready to Dominate

    SportsIllustrated.com

    Hank Hughes Q&A

    New York Times

    Growing as a Player, Beaming as a Father

    Cincinnati Enquirer

    NCAA Tournament is 'Cincinnati vs. the world'

    Cincinnati Enquirer

    Kiel comes out strong in Bearcats' spring scrimmage

    Sporting News

    2013-14 Men's Basketball All-Americans

    Fox Sports

    Cincinnati made me a believer

    CBS Sports.com

    Former redshirt Sean Kilpatrick finishing out historic career

    Cincinnati Enquirer

    Q&A with UC AD Mike Bohn

    ESPN

    Brennan's Wooden Watch: Week 14

    MLSSoccer.com

    Fit and healthy, Omar Cummings offering a new dynamic up top for Houston Dynamo

    Cincinnati Enquirer

    Men's soccer signee Clark named Gatorade Ohio player of the year

    ESPN

    Munchie Legaux and Shaq Washington gain extra year

    Denver Post

    Mike Bohn eager to point Cincinnati Bearcats in right direction as AD

    The Washington Post

    No. 7 Bearcats have highest ranking in 10 years

    Yahoo! Sports

    How Sean Kilpatrick willed UC past Louisville and back into the nation's consciousness

    SI.com

    Cincinnati takes over AAC with win at Louisville

    ESPN.com

    Tough Bearcats don't get rattled

    ESPN.com

    UC staves off Temple to stay perfect in AAC

    Cincinnati Enquirer

    UC looks to 15-year sports admin vet Reed-Francois for interim AD

    CBS Sports

    No. 15 Cincinnati stomps UCF, wins 11th straight

    Cincinnati Enquirer

    Bearcats take down USF 61-54, win 10th straight

    USA Today

    Why Cincinnati is not a team to sleep on

    Cincinnati Enquirer

    Short-handed Bearcats cautious about ranking

    Cincinnati Enquirer

    UC's goal: win them all at home

    Cincinnati Enquirer

    Cronin: Not easy, but Cats got through fatigue

    The News Record

    What you missed in UC sports during break

    FB Schedules

    Boise State, Cincinnati Schedules 2019, 20 Home-and-Home Series

    Forbes

    The Best and Worst College Football Teams for the Money

    USA Today

    Report: Colleges doing poorly at hiring women coaches

    Cincinnati Enquirer

    Randolph named AAC Player of the Week

    Cincinnati Enquirer

    UC women's basketball knocks off Ohio State

    Bleacher Report

    Belk Bowl 2013: Cincinnati-North Carolina

    Cincinnati Enquirer

    Belk Bowl: UC vs. UNC

    ESPN

    Belk Bowl Breakdown

    BelkBowl.com

    The Showdown is Set

    ESPN

    Cards, Bearcats set for defensive battle

    CBS Sports

    Louisville-Cincinnati Preview

    Cincinnati Enquirer

    Thursday is UC's fight for perception

    Cincinnati Enquirer

    Don't let UC's next opponent fool you

    Cincinnati Enquirer

    UC jumps to No. 23 in USA Today football poll

    Cincinnati Enquirer

    Bearcats break into USA Today Top 25

    Cincinnati Enquirer

    McKay turns in monster game against Rutgers

    ESPN

    Kay throws for 408 yards, 4 TDs as Cincinnati routs Rutgers

    Cincinnati Enquirer

    Bearcats won't lessen the pressure

    News & Record

    Pressure takes toll on NC State against Cincinnati

    Cincinnati Enquirer

    Bearcats face variety of bowl scenarios

    The News Record

    UC weary of SMU's aerial attack ahead of AAC clash

    Bleacher Report

    Best College Football Moments in Cincinnati History

    Cincinnati Enquirer

    Mark Barr returns to UC, gets ovation

    HoustonDynamo.com

    After frustrating year, Omar Cummings puts Houston Dynamo on his back with clutch playoff goal

    Cincinnati Enquirer

    UC's Shaq Thomas 'our version of Herb Jones'

    USA Today

    Cincinnati holds off Memphis for third straight

    ESPN

    Cincinnati's Mark Barr out of hospital

    TopDrawer Soccer

    Furman and Cincinnati men go nose-for-nose in College Goal of the Week

    Cincinnati Enquirer

    Green seizing his moment for the Bearcats

    Cincinnati Enquirer

    Bearcats' Jermaine Lawrence is new breed of forward

    UC Magazine

    Hostility to Hope: Feature on Men's Soccer Player John Manga

    Cincinnati Enquirer

    Bearcats' Jermiah Davis III fights to be remembered

    Cincinnati Enquirer

    Bearcats' Justin Jackson goes from energizer to example

    The News Record

    Cronin excited for new group

    Cincinnati Enquirer

    UC Bearcats' Sean Kilpatrick: 'It's the season now'

    Cincinnati Enquirer

    Bearcats basketball will have fresh look

    The News Record

    UC Looks to RetainVictory Bell for Eighth Consecutive Season

    Miami Herald

    Kay Ready to Lead Bearcats into Rivalry Game

    Cincinnati Enquirer

    Former Bearcat Thompkins making most of shot in NFL

    Cincinnati Enquirer

    New practice setup could benefit UC basketball

    ESPN.com

    Munchie Legaux out for season

    ESPN.com

    Cincinnati Rolls Past Purdue

    Cincinnati Enquirer

    Bearcats defense puts up dominant effort

    American Athletic Conference

    2013 Team Previews: Cincinnati Bearcats

    Sports Illustrated

    Bowl projections: Cincinnati vs. North Carolina in the Russell Athletic Bowl

    Cincinnati Business Courier

    Bearcats sell out football opener against Purdue

    Cincinnati Enquirer

    Depth at defensive line still strong for Bearcats

    Bleacher Report

    Cincinnati Bearcats Football 2013 Team Preview

    UC Voted 2nd

    Coach Tuberville and his players discuss their reactions to being voted to finish 2nd in the inaugural season of the American Athletic Conference

    QB Timetable

    Coach Tuberville discusses his timetable to choose a starting QB with The Cincinnati Enquirer

    Thompkins at Patriots' Training Camp

    Former UC wide receiver, Kenbrell Thompkins, impressed many at Patriots' training camp 

    World University Games

    Sean Kilpatrick talks about his experience overseas

    World University Games

    Sean Kilpatrick talks about his experience overseas 

    Nippert Renovation Plan

    The Cincinnati Enquirer looks at the Nippert Stadium Project

    Cincinnati football's 'Crocodile Dundee'

    A former professional rugby player from Australia joins the Bearcat football team

    2013 Preseason 'Watch List' 

    Several Cincinnati Bearcats make 2013 national 'watch list'

    Sports Insider Today

    Young Cincinnati Team Looks to Improve in 2013 Amidst New Conference Setting

    ESPN Blog

    Cincinnati to play Pitt in December

    GoBEARCATS.com

    Former Bearcat Herman Qualifies for U.S. Open

    USA Today

    BearcatsTV Gets National Attention from USA Today's For the Win

    SportingNews.com

    Cincinnati Bearcats Baseball Earns Top Honors in Videobombing

    The Washington Post

    Cincinnati Bearcats Do the Best Postgame Interviews

    Fox Sports

    Bearcats Rock Postgame Interviews

    Philly.com

    Cincinnati Bearcats Revolutionize the Post Game Interview

    YardBarker

    You'll love this Cincinnati Bearcats Post Game Funny Business Compilation

    Philly.com

    Those guys having all the fun: An oral history of the Cincinnati baseball team's videobombs

    MSN Now

    This college baseball team wins the 'best interview' award

    ESPN.com

    Winn, Cincinnati run over Pittsburgh

    Cincinnati.com Bearcats Blog

    Cincinnati looks to sophomore RB Ralph Abernathy to increase production