Girls Junior Varsity Soccer, Girls Varsity Soccer · From the playing field to the dinner table

MIDDLETOWN-There are an endless number of analogies that relate to the positive impact high school athletics have on real life.

I personally enjoy hearing stories from those both young and old, where a coach positively impacted the outcome of one’s future.

This Friday night the Middletown Athletic of Fame prepares to induct seven new members, and I am sure we’ll hear numerous individuals thank Mom and Dad for their support during their high school athletic experience too.

Currently, one Middletown High School senior has both of those analogies in the same person, and under the same roof.

Zayion Hyman plays defensemen for the Middletown Lady Middies varsity soccer team. Her father is first-year head coach Jeremy Hyman, and he successfully juggles both roles for Zayion.

We here at found this experience positively unique, so we decided to take a few minutes to speak with Zayion about her senior season thus far.

Coach Hyman’s path to becoming the Lady Middies head coach didn’t take the conventional route as most head coaches. “My dad didn’t play soccer in high school, but he did play basketball for the Middies,” said Zayion. “He’s coached my brother in other sports, and just a few years ago he decided to help my soccer team so he could support me too.”

“I feel he’s made me a better player and person since his arrival as head coach,” Zayion continued. “He has high expectations for our team, and we’re working hard to achieve our goals.”

The Lady Middies (0-2-2) have faced their share of adversity early this season. Tuesday night they fell in a non-conference game to Northwest High School 2-0.

During the 30th minute in the first-half Northwest struck first as forward Melanie Wilzbach found the back of the Lady Middie goal. That would be the only goal of the half.

During the 36th minute of the second-half the Lady Knights added a second goal to extend their lead, and that would eventually stand as the final.

Rest assured, Coach Hyman and the Lady Middies are not satisfied until they capture that elusive first win.

“Dad wants us to improve and play our game,” said Zayion. “Our growth fundamentally is a foundation he preaches daily. He holds me to the same standards at home too. He is so driven to help not only our team, but me to be successful personally too.”

Coach Hyman takes every opportunity teach both on and off the field. “Does he talk about soccer when you’re sitting around the dinner table?” we asked. “All the time,” said Zayion.

Zayion has plans to continue her soccer career due to Jeremy’s influence. “Before my Dad’s arrival I wasn’t planning to play college soccer, but now I feel confident enough to pursue the next level,” said Zayion. “He also has inspired me to want to help coach or mentor youth in soccer too. Maybe that will be a major or career path for me.”

“This season has been a positive experience. We’re not where we want to be as a team yet. Our goal is to continue improving, and to go out there and win some games,” Zayion concluded.

Zayion and the Lady Middies will continue their pursuit for success on Thursday night as they travel to Sycamore for the GMC league opener. Kickoff is slated for 7:00 p.m. Go Lady Middies!