08 Jun McKenna signs to play college soccer for Muskingum University
[June 8, 2020 – Harmon, Guam] Playing intercollegiate soccer was an opportunity Morgan McKenna could not pass up after receiving an offer from Muskingum University.
The 2020 Father Duenas Memorial School graduate officially signed a commitment letter Friday morning at the Guam Football Association National Training Center witnessed by Sang Hoon Kim, GFA Technical Director, and Ross Awa, GFA Assistant Technical Director.
“I’m very pleased to congratulate another player from the Guam national program moving on to play intercollegiate soccer,” Kim said. “Not everyone can play at the intercollegiate level, and I commend Morgan for his efforts over the years to reach this next level in his development.
“I would like to see even more players from Guam move up through the Elite Player pathway and I encourage all players who dream of playing at the highest level to take advantage of opportunities at GFA to help them achieve their goal,” Kim added.
The Muskingum University Fighting Muskies compete in NCAA Division III’s Ohio Athletic Conference. McKenna was able to directly communicate with Adam Ponder, Men’s Soccer Team Head Coach at the university, last month during a Zoom virtual meeting arranged through the expanding U.S. college network being created at GFA. McKenna joined the Zoom virtual meeting with other players from Guam’s U19 Men’s National Training Squad, along with Karl Dodd, Guam Men’s National Team Head Coach, hoping to learn more about the college recruitment process, he said.
“The whole U19 national team was in on the call and after, I received a message from Coach Adam telling me that the university would love to have me there,” McKenna said. “I couldn’t pass it up and I did everything I needed to do to be accepted to the college. I submitted my application and I also sent my highlight video to Coach Adam. Next thing you know, I was accepted and was also fortunate to receive an affordable tuition rate through financial assistance from the university.
“I’ve always been interested in playing college soccer – I want to play at a high level and eventually go professional and this is one step closer to that,” McKenna added.
McKenna started playing soccer when he was 12 years old and was soon invited to train with other players in the Guam Youth National Program. McKenna was first called up to play for Guam at the AFC U16 Championship Qualifier in Indonesia in September 2017 and in July the following year, played for Guam at the EAFF U15 Boys Tournament in China, PR. McKenna also was part of the U17 National Team that hoisted the 2018 Marianas Cup trophy in October. In Saipan, McKenna was Guam’s fifth and final kicker during the tournament’s U17 Boys Competition penalty kick shootout, making his shot to seal Guam’s win after both teams finished 4-4 in regulation time.
Last year, McKenna played for the Guam U19/U23 National Team in the 2019 Marianas Cup held at GFA in July. In November, he was called up for the Guam U19 National Team that competed at the AFC U19 Championship Qualifier in Vietnam.
McKenna played youth club soccer with Wings FC and later for Manhoben Lalahi in the Budweiser Soccer League, Guam’s premier men’s soccer league.
“I would like to thank GFA, my parents, coaches, and friends for supporting me through the process of playing college soccer and improving as player in general,” McKenna said.
McKenna plans to depart Guam to Ohio in August and take up pre-pharmacy.
Morgan McKenna, left, with black face mask, signs his letter of commitment to play intercollegiate men’s soccer for Muskingum University in Ohio Friday at the Guam Football Association National Training Center. The Fighting Muskies compete in NCAA Division III’s Ohio Athletic Conference. Present at the signing are Sang Hoon Kim, GFA Technical Director (seated with blue face mask) and Ross Awa, GFA Assistant Technical Director, standing.
Morgan McKenna (left with black face mask) poses for a photo with Guam Football Association Technical Director Sang Hoon Kim (seated, with blue face mask) and Guam Football Association Assistant Technical Director Ross Awa (standing) after signing his letter of commitment to play intercollegiate men’s soccer for Muskingum University in Ohio Friday at the Guam Football Association National Training Center. The Fighting Muskies compete in NCAA Division III’s Ohio Athletic Conference.
Morgan McKenna, right in black shirt, poses for a photo with his mother Miriam Capistrano after signing his letter of commitment to play intercollegiate men’s soccer for Muskingum University in Ohio Friday at the Guam Football Association National Training Center. The Fighting Muskies compete in NCAA Division III’s Ohio Athletic Conference.