Feller headed for Manhattan College

By Mike Zummo
Posted 1/20/21


Madeline Feller made her verbal commitment to play Division I soccer at Manhattan College in February, just weeks before the COVID-19 pandemic shut the world down. She made it official in …

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Feller headed for Manhattan College


Madeline Feller made her verbal commitment to play Division I soccer at Manhattan College in February, just weeks before the COVID-19 pandemic shut the world down.
She made it official in November when she signed her National Letter of Intent to join the Jaspers, starting with the fall 2021 season. In addition to her athletic scholarship, she also was awarded with a Presidential Scholarship, which will take care of most of her collegiate tuition fees.
“I feel so lucky,” said Feller, a senior at Valley Central High School. “It really didn’t affect me with a lot of people not being able to be seen. I had that already done and it felt like such a relief.”
Her attention was turned toward Manhattan before she looked at the soccer program, as she noticed Manhattan has a strong “exercise science” program, which will help her fulfill her goal of becoming a trainer for a sports team.

“They approached me because the coach, Brendan Lawler, saw some trainings,” Feller said. “I really loved his coaching style. He’s not afraid to speak his mind.”
The Jaspers didn’t get on the field in the fall 2020 due to the pandemic, and went 4-11-2, and 3-5-2 in the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference in 2019, and Lawler has local ties. He’s listed as a Newburgh native and coached the Pine Bush girls’ soccer team from 2003-05, and the school won its first Section 9 Class AA championship in his last season.
He’s also coached at West Point and Marist.
Feller expects it to be a good fit for her.
“I watched some of their training sessions while I was researching online,” Feller said. “There is always high competition and they’re competing all through practice, which I really like.”
Feller, who spent most of her time at Valley Central playing as a midfielder or a striker says she was told to expect to play outside back, a defensive position.
“I’ve played multiple positions throughout my career, between travel and high school,” Feller said. “My versatility will help me because I feel comfortable everywhere.”
Valley Central coach Jonathan Walsh said Feller will be successful wherever she plays on the field.
“She’s got the speed to play out there,” Walsh said. “It also helps with her being such a good basketball player. She understands how to play that one-on-one defense. If I asked her to play there this year, she would. She’s got all the skills and capabilities.”
The Vikings didn’t get on the field in the fall. Even though soccer – described as a moderate-risk sport by the state Dept. of Health – was approved to play in the fall, Section 9 elected to move all fall sports to March and April. The Vikings are scheduled to play their first game on Thursday, March 16 at home against Monticello.
“I’m really hoping we have a season,” Feller said. “It was disappointing not to have the season at the normal time. We had high hopes for the season and have the potential to win a sectional championship this year. I would like to be given the opportunity to.”
Walsh said the class of 2021 was one of the team’s strongest, and they were looking forward to big things with their 12 seniors.
“With this group being their last year, we’ve talked since March of last year that our goal was to have ourselves ready and prepared to be successful,” Walsh said.
No matter what happens, Feller will head into a possible spring season and her travel season with her collegiate future secure.
“I’m excited to have to fight for a lot of my time,” Feller said. “The challenge is going to be exciting to have to put that extra effort, and I’m looking forward to practice soccer for the full year. Usually I spent time playing basketball, but this is the first time I’ll be playing soccer full time. I’ll be playing with girls that are more mature and have more experience. I can learn a lot from them.”


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