By JERAMY STOVER, Staff Reporter
For many college athletes, their senior year is one to be celebrated. Going through the offseason and playing on the home field for one last time are moments they never forget.
But Dylan Hatcher is going above and beyond that.
The University of Michigan-Dearborn attacker has now put himself in a spot where only he stands. At the top of the all-time goals scoring list in program history.
“To be a part of Michigan history feels amazing. It’s also very humbling,” Hatcher said. “I wouldn’t have been able to reach this record without my current and past teammates. Without them, myself and this program would not have had nearly as many opportunities and successes in the last four seasons.”
Hatcher broke Chris Cascadden’s record in UM-Dearborn’s 17-7 win over Wheaton College on March 21 by scoring the 91st goal of his career. He would add nine more goals over the weekend to bring the record to 100.
The senior captain didn’t let the approaching record faze him one bit. While going through warmups, he treated it like just another game. And once he scored the record-breaking goal, his only focus was the rest of the game.
Hatcher said the game wasn’t special just because of his accomplishment, but the many accomplishments achieved by some of his younger teammates.
“(Coach Watts) announced it in the team huddle after the game. I was humbled by everyone’s reaction. But it means a lot more that this game was not only an achievement for me but also an achievement for many of my teammates,” Hatcher said.
Head coach Jason Watts says it’s when Hatcher doesn’t have the ball that makes him most dangerous.
“Dylan’s best asset is moving without the ball. He is excellent at putting himself in scoring position,” Watts said. “He has exceptional accuracy and quick hands which makes him a very efficient scorer. He has a big outside shot but is also very good finishing on the crease which makes him a deadly weapon anywhere on the field.”
This season, Watts has also seen Hatcher excel off the field. He said he’s known how well of a leader Hatcher is on the field, but is now watching him take that skill and applying it off the field.
“Dylan has really stepped up this year off the field. He is the first to volunteer for organizing events, community service activities, and supporting his teammates,” Watts said. “On the field he always been a leader but has taken that to a new level this season.”
Hatcher is breaking personal milestones as well. Before this season he had never scored five or more goals more than once in a season. He has done that already this season in just five games. Hatcher is also averaging 3.6 goals per game so far this season. He has never averaged more than 2.8 goals a game in his three seasons with the Wolverines.
When asked what it takes to break a record like this, Hatcher had just one iconic phrase.
“The team, the team, the team,” Hatcher said.