RIO GRANDE, Ohio — So far, it’s been a short soccer life for Gallia Academy’s Colton Fallon.
However, in announcing his intention to continue his career with the University of Rio Grande, he intends to make it a long-term goal.
On Wednesday, the defender Fallon — after essentially only a season-and-a-half at Gallia Academy, formally and officially inked his name to playing soccer for the RedStorm.
His signing ceremony took place inside the University of Rio Grande’s Lyne Center, as he was flanked by his parents Justin and Meredith Fallon.
Fallon will be playing soccer for the highly-successful University of Rio Grande men’s squad —under the direction of head coach Scott Morrissey.
The RedStorm men’s soccer club is coming off an NAIA national runner-up last season — one year after capturing the NAIA national championship.
For Fallon, he joins two-year GAHS teammate Isaiah Lester, who officially committed to the program on May 17.
He also said he choose Rio Grande for all the right reasons.
“I choose Rio Grande because it is such a good soccer program, and Coach Morrissey is such a great guy. Plus it’s so close to home, I just felt like it was the right move to make,” said Fallon. “I’m very good friends with Isaiah Lester also.”
Actually, Fallon said he was “friends with everyone on the soccer team”, but didn’t play until his junior year — when Richard Isberner was hired as the Blue Devils’ head coach.
“I started playing and picked it up and Coach Isberner really helped me get to where I am at today,” he said. “It was a great experience (at Gallia Academy).”
In addition, on the team front, it was an historic season for Gallia Academy.
The Blue Devils did enjoy a school record for victories in a single season with 11, as GAHS posted an overall record of 11-5-1.
Gallia Academy also captured its first conference championship in soccer, sharing the Ohio Valley Conference title with South Point.
The OVC was in its first season of soccer as a league.
Furthermore, the Blue and White won its only sectional championships in school history in his two years.
While Lester led the club in goals, Fallon was a key cog as a primary defender.
He also explained how quickly he picked up the sport — after two years of golf for his fall sport of choice.
“I don’t want to say we were the best team to ever come through here, because there will always be somebody better, but we were a good team and it was just great playing with all of my friends,” said Fallon. “All of my friends have always been soccer players, so I’ve always been around it, but it was a big shock coming in. The first six months was really rough, but after that, you just start clicking with it. I learned things really fast after that. But I had to do that if I wanted to play, so I made myself learn and practiced a lot.”
Fallon kept working until he suffered a senior season-ending injury.
As a result, it hurt his chances for earning any postseason honors, which he otherwise likely would have won.
“Halfway through the season, I ended up breaking a bone in my knee, so it prevented me from getting any awards at the end of the season,” said Fallon. “But it was still one of the best times of my life.”
Fallon has since fully recovered from his knee injury, and added that he “just came off a strong track season.”
It was his third and final year of track and field.
But now, it’s all about the RedStorm pitch for Fallon — who plans to major in Business Management with a minor in Marketing.
“I’m fully recovered and ready to play soccer again next year,” he said. “I’m excited and I can’t wait. Hopefully, it will be a good thing here (at Rio Grande).”
Paul Boggs can be reached at 740-446-2342, ext. 2106