Hidden star kicks game into gear

Emily Arthur

Editor’s note: This story is the first in a weekly series profiling “Hidden Stars” across campus. A “Hidden Star” is someone who doesn’t normally get recognized and who excels in club sports, intramural or other recreational activities. The series will run on every Tuesday throughout the semester. If you’d like to nominate someone to be featured as a “Hidden Star,” e-mail that person’s name, phone number, e-mail address and a brief paragraph about why he or she should be recognized to [email protected].

If ISU men’s soccer club vice president Dusty Villhauer could tell ISU students just one thing, the choice would be easy.

“I’d tell them our schedule,” Villhauer said. “We never get people to our games. There’s a lot unknown about us.”

Villhauer, a junior in chemistry, is out to change that.

“Dusty always volunteers for everything,” head coach Sandro Bassanini said. “He’s vice president, travel coordinator and he helps me coach two teams at the club level. We had a meeting [last week] and we were dividing up all the jobs for the semester and he picked half of them.”

Villhauer said both the club and his volunteer activities give him more than just a place to play soccer.

“It’s brought structure into my life,” he said. “… If you have to make practice, you’ve got to make sure everything is organized. When you are forced to manage your time, you do.”

Structure is something that was missing for the club before Bassanini took over two years ago.

“They used to just get together and play,” Bassanini said. “Now we have regular practice. I try to get them on a routine and put some discipline in them. Some like it, some don’t like it too much.”

Villhauer is one of the ones who does.

He likes organization, and he likes spending more time with his teammates.

“Last year and the year before we never hung out together. We didn’t have a lot of unity before Sandro came in,” Villhauer said. “It’s amazing. I hang out with guys from the team now who I’d normally have absolutely nothing in common with.”

The soccer club has both a traveling team and a team that plays in Des Moines every Sunday during the season.

Villhauer said that’s important.

“I’m pretty sure I’d make the traveling team, but I can’t be on it because of my coaching responsibilities,” he said. “I just have too much going on. This is the perfect way for me to do both.

“I love the opportunity to work with the kids,” he said. “You have to be on schedule all the time, because you have people depending on you.”

Although a season schedule has yet to be set, Villhauer and his teammates have been busy practicing.

Before school started they were holding two-a-day practices and now they’ve moved to three practices a week.

“We have lots of creativity going for us and we’re fun to watch,” Villhauer said. “It’s just good, fun soccer. We aren’t all worried about how we look, we’re just out there to play. That’s the best soccer you can see. Just a bunch of guys getting together to play.”