Swedes sign 3 for soccer

By Steve Sell
June 22, 2016

LINDSBORG — An out-of-stater, an out-of-country and an in-stater have signed soccer letter of intents with Bethany College.

Julian Soltero of Fort Worth, Jaiden Van der Heijden, Auckland, New Zealand, and Conagher Welch of Independence are the newest Swedes. 

Soltero was a three-year varsity starter at C.F. Brewer High School in Texas and a senior team captain there. He earned All-District honorable mention his sophomore and junior years. He also was first-team All-District and school MVP his senior year.

He is the son of Raul and Angela Soltero. He plans to major in biology.

Van der Heijden makes the long journey from Onehunga High School in Auckland, New Zealand. He played four years, starting three in his high school career. Van der Heijden was named the Onehunga High School MVP and received an award for footballing/soccer excellence. He was the Auckland UTD supporters' player of the season, the top scorer in his senior year and a vice-captain for the Under-20 at the age of 17.

Van der Heijden is the son of Debbie and Frans van der Heijden. He had a 4.0 grade point average.

Welch started all four years at Independence and was a three-sport varsity athlete for most of his career, starting for three years on the baseball team and wrestling on varsity for three years.

As a sophomore, Welch was named first-team All-SEK for soccer and second-team All-SEK for wrestling. As a junior he was honored for soccer by being named first-team All-SEK and second-team All-State.

He is the son of Jerry and Mary Welch. He plans to major in Business at Bethany.

"We are very excited to have Conagher, Jaiden, and Julian joining our program,” Bethany coach Shane Taylor said. "Our coaching staff has worked hard to find players that will make a positive impact on the team and represent BC with integrity. These three young men fit the bill. Each one brings the necessary experience and technical ability that will help make them successful at the college level. We welcome them to the Swede family.”