By Miranda Kulp, GoPSUsports.com Student Staff Writer
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - Although this is Robby Sagel's first year wearing Blue and White, he's fitting in perfectly with the Penn State men's soccer team.
This year's squad is especially unique since Sagel is one-of-seven transfers in the 2015 season. Before his move to Happy Valley he played at Temple University for his freshman and sophomore year. With Penn State being a much larger school than Temple, Sagel has no regrets on his move.
"I really wanted to take the next step and challenge myself, overall Penn State is a much bigger environment than Temple," said Sagel. "It's a bigger program, bigger fan base, and with higher expectations, it's a bigger challenge,"
Not only did he want to challenge himself in soccer but in his academics as well, Sagel mentions although deciding to transfer was difficult, he enjoys the challenge.
"How could I complain, everything is so much bigger and offers more opportunities, " said Sagel. "The school, although is challenging, offers a lot more responsibility which personally I think is better."
The junior defender credits his team for making his transition easier. "One positive I noticed right away is that the team is really close, they've helped me out a lot in terms of adjusting especially since my transfer happened so fast,"noted Sagel.
Truth be told, Head Coach Bob Warming mentioned he had his eye on Sagel since his days playing at Shattuck St. Mary's prep school. After Sagel's decision to leave Temple Coach Warming was eager to have him on his team.
"It's great to watch him here at Penn State," stated Coach Warming. "He's a great player and the other guys seem to really like him on the team, you can see their reaction when he scored the goal and how they were so happy for him. It's always a benefit when you can see how smoothly some players can transition to new schools and a new team."
So far this season, Sagel has started every match for the Nittany Lions and racked up a total of 470 minutes played.
In Penn State's last home game against then-No.10 Indiana, Sagel flourished in the 70th-minute when he got his right foot on the ball and belted it into the middle of the net to give the Lions a 1-0 victory over the Hoosiers.
"I think he's made great progress adjusting and within the last 30 days, but think we'll all see him grow into an even better player as the season continues. I'm excited to see what he gets done this season and think he's becoming a great asset to the team," said Coach Warming.
Although he's a transfer from Temple, Sagel is originally from Las Vegas, Nev. He also mentions he grew up playing soccer ever since he as a little kid and fell in love with the game instantly.
"The dream is to always play soccer as long as you can but that's also why I'm glad I'm here at Penn State since the school helps prepares me for a time when I can't play anymore," said Sagel.
It's undeniable that despite only being with Penn State a few months, Sagel's transition was exceptional.
"I think he found his home here at Jeffery field," said Coach Warming.
Sagel and the rest of the Lions will be back in action on Sunday, Sept. 20 when they hit the road to Columbus, Ohio to face off against Ohio State University for their second Big Ten Conference match of the 2015 season.