When the St. Olaf men’s soccer team won its first NCAA Division III national championship title last month, they had a secret weapon cheering them on from home: their Team IMPACT teammate, Jordan. “It feels amazing for his new team to be champions of the country!” Jordan’s mom, Melanie, said.
Jordan is ten years old and lives with spinal muscular atrophy. He was matched with the St. Olaf soccer team in August of 2023—just in time for the experience of a lifetime on the road to the national championship. “He is pumped to be part of such a fun community,” Melanie said, “and it means a lot that they are taking the time to include him.”
And for as much as Jordan has enjoyed being part of the team, the team has enjoyed having him as well. In the short time he has been with them, Jordan has forever changed St. Olaf soccer. “Jordan has shared with us so many amazing traits we carry with us on a daily basis, like our attitude, our work ethics, how to face adversity, how to support others and how to be a great member of the team!” said Head Coach Justin Oliver. “Jordan is an amazing teammate. Throughout the time we’ve been connected he’s sent us awesome messages of good luck and congratulations while also being at games in person and supporting us. He is selfless and is just an important part of the St. Olaf Men’s Soccer family.”
After the most successful season in program history, Jordan’s favorite moment of the season was, unsurprisingly, watching his teammates win the championship. His team, however, has a different moment with Jordan that stands out in their heads: the day they knew he was part of the St. Olaf family. “Our favorite memory with Jordan so far was the first time we met,” coach Oliver recalled. “We had a pizza party and watched the St. Olaf women’s soccer game. It was awesome to see how passionate Jordan was about Ole soccer so fast. He is so much fun to be around!”
For Jordan and his new teammates, 2023 was a year to remember. It was the year they became teammates, the year they formed lifelong memories, and the year they, together, became National Champs.