Atticus Soehren always had the idea of playing football at university level.
But after a Class A state javelin throw in his senior year, Soehren found himself talking to college track coaches, and he recently signed up to the University of Pennsylvania to throw the javelin.
The former Oxford Hills quarterback even signed up at Bridgton Academy for a postgraduate year to give colleges more opportunities to watch him play football after Maine was limited to seven-on-seven football in 2020, Soehren’s senior season, due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
In his sophomore year, Soehren placed 16th in the javelin at the 2019 Class A State meet. After a year off due to the cancellation of the spring 2020 sports season due to the pandemic, Soehren is entered his senior season wanting and expecting to improve his state placement.
“Coming into final year, I knew I had been one of the best sophomores and that there was no one really below me who had come up, so I knew I had a good hit that year, ”Soehren said.
In the second Oxford Hills track and field competition of the season, Soehren threw 167 feet and 1 inch, then a week later, 167-4. After these notes, he knew he could finish the season well.
“The state championship was the goal all year,” said Soehren. “I couldn’t imagine not winning it, so I thought, ‘I’m going to win this thing, so I just need to figure out how to do it.'”
In the 2021 playoffs, Soehren won the KVAC Championship with a 173-1 throw. Ahead of his throws at the state meet, a Division III track coach told his father, Oxford Hills football coach Mark Soehren, that with a few more feet on his throws, Atticus could attract the attention of Division I schools.
In the State Class A competition, Soehren ended up throwing a winning distance of 185-6.
“By that time, I had thrown 173 feet. I had never really considered this as an option before, ”said Atticus Soehren. “I threw the 185 feet and it was a PR of 12 feet. It was kind of like, ‘Damn, let’s see what can happen with this.’ “
Soehren then emailed a few Ivy League schools that had track and field programs and, within two days, received a response from Harvard University and the University of Pennsylvania.
“I’m taking a postgraduate year, anyway, so (I was) technically a junior, so I sent him in,” Atticus Soehren said. “The Ivy League has always been a goal for football, but it didn’t work. The odds seemed slim over the summer, and academics have always been the deciding factor in choosing a school and getting a degree that gets me through college.
Soehren was still preparing for the football season – and he played this season at Bridgton, although he missed three weeks for college track and field recruiting visits – but the competition in college track and field was getting more and more intense. no longer a real option.
“In all likelihood I would have gone to play NESCAC football, so it was a question of, could I give up D-III football for the DI track,” Soehren said. “I thought about it for a week and kind of asked my sister jokingly, ‘NESCAC football or the Harvard track?’ She looked at me and said, “Why don’t you choose Harvard? Then I said, ‘I know what you mean.’ “
Soehren visited different colleges, was in contact with schools like the University of North Carolina, Duke, and Wake Forest, but ultimately chose Penn. He publicly announced his engagement on November 4 and will register next fall.
“I am really looking forward to training for the javelin all year round,” said Soehren. “I’ve seen massive improvements just throwing for a few months during the season, so I’m super excited to see how far I can throw after full years of training, both immediately as a freshman, and also four years later when i’m senior and train year round in college.
Soehren also said he was excited about competitions like Penn Relays, a famous track and field competition held at the University of Pennsylvania.
“I’m super excited,” Soehren said. “I mean, one of, if not the biggest track and field competition in America for four years on my home track?” It’s gonna be amazing.
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