Junior Dominic Marshall’s first season as a Fairfield Stag has been a successful one; so far, he has seven goals and one assist to his name. In such a competitive league, talent truly stands out in players with the ability to consistently provide opportunities and goals for their team.

Marshall has sent 45 shots on goal, which shows he is not shy when it comes to taking advantage of when he gets the ball. Although teamwork is an instrumental part of the game, Marshall’s individual play-making abilities have made him stand out above the rest of his teammates.

At the age of five, Marshall began playing soccer with his two older brothers who helped grow his interest in the sport. He grew up in Middlesbrough, England where he honed his skills to the point of joining the roster of a League 1 team, Hartlepool United, an under-18 league. League 1 is England’s third division of soccer, mainly consisting of players fighting for contracts for professional teams in the Championship and Premier League. Marshall said of his experiences with Hartlepool United: “It opened the door for me to have a chance to come to the United States.” Playing at such a high level of competition made Marshall a very attractive player to the coaching staff at Loyola University – Maryland where he transitioned to after leaving England to come to the United States.

Marshall played two seasons at Loyola and described the level of physicality in U.S. soccer to be much greater than in England: “The style of play is different. It’s a lot more intense and physical. There are a lot of athletic players in the United States.” Of course moving from one country to another provides a bit of a shock at first, but Marshall caught on to the intense style of play in the U.S. and made 38 appearances for the Greyhounds. However, due to problems of eligibility, Marshall was only able to play in three games during his final year at Loyola before becoming a Stag.

So, how is it that someone who sat the bench most of last year became our top scorer? Well, some may say it’s the mindset of a player that’s more valuable than his performance. Even though he was benched last season, Marshall still looked forward to playing the game at Fairfield, “I’m fortunate to have been given the opportunity to come here where it’s a great environment,” he said. With an amazing coaching staff and the tight bonds that the he formed with his fellow Stags, he became more devoted to train harder and make the best decisions for his team. Marshall talked about how his teammates influence him to play at the best of his ability and said, “Because we like each other and enjoy each other’s company, we are more willing to fight for each other on the field.” This shows in competition as Marshall squeezes out every inch of talent he has to offer our soccer program to make it as successful as it is today.

Out of the goals he has scored for Fairfield so far, Marshall said the match-winning goal away at Iona College is his favorite. This is not only because it gave Fairfield the win, but also because of the fact that it was an away match against one of the top contending colleges. It’s obvious that Marshall is not only developing as a player, but also making the whole team better as the team has already put more shots in the back of the net than last year.

Overall, he believes that “everyone wants to win,” but it takes a certain understanding of the game to achieve a winning record. With the team acting as a family and developing bonds on and off the field, Marshall is able to impact the team in more ways than just scoring. By raising the bar this year, hopefully his contributions to the team will carry over to future Stags for seasons to come.

 

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