Full circle: ’Stoga alumna returns to coach JVA girls’ soccer team

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By Juliana Yao, Staff Reporter  Supervising the JVA girls’ soccer team as they scurry across the field is a familiar face. Five years prior, she was one of these players. Ariel Loevy graduated from Conestoga in 2018 after playing on the soccer team in high school. She then committed to Denison University in Ohio to...

By Juliana Yao, Staff Reporter

 Supervising the JVA girls’ soccer team as they scurry across the field is a familiar face. Five years prior, she was one of these players.

Ariel Loevy graduated from Conestoga in 2018 after playing on the soccer team in high school. She then committed to Denison University in Ohio to continue her soccer career. High school soccer remained memorable for Loevy, and after graduating from college in the Class of 2022, she returned as the JVA girls’ soccer team head coach.

“I loved it (’Stoga soccer). It was one of my favorite soccer experiences,” Loevy said. “I had a great team and great coaches. I learned a lot about myself as a player, and it showed me that I wanted to play in college too.”

Loevy decided to attend Denison for its small size, academically challenging programs and soccer team. She took advantage of the university’s strong science department, majoring in biology to pursue nursing. 

“Just going onto campus I fell in love with (Denison University). I met the soccer team when I was in high school, and they were awesome. They were super cool and just made me feel really welcomed,” Loevy said.

Coaching came out of left field for Loevy. She had not considered it until Katie Wilson, English teacher and JVB soccer coach, encouraged Loevy to be the head coach of JVA girls soccer. Wilson had coached Loevy when she was on the JVB team and understood her dedicated nature.

“The JVA program deserves someone who is a fierce competitor but who also knows how to foster character among players,” Wilson said. “I think (Loevy) will be excellent in that sense.”

For Loevy, being an alum and a coach has allowed her to connect with the athletes. Having been a player herself, she acknowledges how tired the athletes are after long school days and how they want to relax and have fun.

“Being able to reel them back in and say, ‘this is what we need to work on,’ is challenging,” Loevy said. “But seeing their growth throughout the season makes it super worth it.”

Additionally, Loevy is able to talk to her players about the similarities in the school, such as the teachers that they shared. She believes this brings her closer to her players. Loevy also witnesses the differences in how the school is now compared to when she attended.

“It’s a lot of fun being back and being able to see how the school changed and what the students and the teachers are like now. I’m just really happy that I’m able to do it,” Loevy said.

Whether Loevy will continue to coach next year is still undecided. She currently works at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia and plans to enter nursing school, which would tighten her schedule. For now, she is trying her best to push her players.

“She comes across as tough,” Wilson said. “But she’s as loyal as they come and will support everyone in her life to the end of the earth.”


Juliana Yao can be reached at [email protected]

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