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October 23, 2013

Local resident inducted into Albion College Athletic Hall of Fame

By Mark Vest
C & G Sports Writer

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Local resident inducted into Albion College Athletic Hall of Fame
Pictured is former Albion College women’s soccer player Liz Jackson, who was inducted into Albion’s Athletic Hall of Fame.

For somebody who made Albion College’s women’s soccer team as a walk-on, things turned out pretty nice for Liz Jackson.

Jackson, who played for the Britons from 1998-2001, was elected into the Albion College Athletic Hall of Fame Oct. 11.

During her time at Albion, Jackson was a part of Britons teams that won three consecutive league championships. Jackson’s total of 10 goals in 2000 was the fifth-highest in the Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association (MIAA) that year, and after also scoring 10 goals in 2001, she achieved All-America status from the National Soccer Coaches Association of America.

Jackson — her teammates remember as Liz Hermiller — played her high school ball at Troy High and went to Albion on an academic scholarship. While she may have chosen Albion for academic purposes, she wasn’t prepared to let the sport she had played since childhood go. She earned a spot on Albion’s roster.

Little did she know that making the decision to try out would eventually land her in Albion’s Athletic Hall of Fame.

“I was surprised,” she said. “Very excited, very honored. I feel honored and privileged to be among the group of athletes. It’s not about just being honored as an athlete — it reminded me of the whole Albion experience.”

Although Jackson was inducted into Albion’s Athletic Hall of Fame as an individual, without assistance along the way, it is an opportunity that would have been unlikely to occur. She acknowledged the support she has received.

“Always my mom, dad, and my family has been a huge support for me,” she said. “They’ve been there for me every step of the way. Our coach (former Albion coach Lisa Roschek) pretty much paved the way for our success. She set the bar and the standards high. I think she provided great leadership for our team. ... We had a great group of individuals who supported each other. I think that also helped in our success.”

While sports may be played for competitive purposes, perhaps one of the biggest benefits that can from participating in them are the life lessons that can come as a result.

“First was accountability,” she said of what she learned along the way. “You have to show up for your team. It’s not just for yourself — it’s for your team. Also, I think there was a lesson learned about priorities — about being a student-athlete. It’s not all about athletics. You also have to manage your academics and studies. I learned about managing different tasks and prioritizing.

“I think the teammates, the friendships, I had are lifelong. I think the lessons learned about hard work, dedication, priorities, being on the team — I think those have stayed with me throughout my life.”

Jackson resides in Rochester with her husband, John, and their three children, Johnny, Heidi and Hannah. She works at a local hospital as a physician’s assistant.

You can reach C & G Sports Writer Mark Vest at mvest@candgnews.com or at (586)279-1112. Twitter Follow Mark on Twitter.