Where Are They Now
Nov. 1, 2011
One of the brightest stars in the young history of Wyoming women's soccer, Mercy Adetoye helped lead the Cowgirls to unprecedented success on the pitch in the early 2000's. Her athletic prowess made her a scoring threat on the field, while her enthusiasm for the game was contagious off the field. She is the latest focus in WyomingAthletics.com's "Where Are They Now."
A two-time, first-team All-Mountain West selection, Adetoye's name is all over the Wyoming record book. She still holds multiple career, single-season and single-game marks, including career goals (24), points (58) and shots (165). Adetoye has shifted her passion to teaching and coaching now, but still finds time to follow and cheer for the Cowgirls.
Give us some background on your life and career after leaving UW.
After Wyoming I decided that I needed a change of scenery so I moved to Seattle, Wash. I now live and work on Capitol Hill, which is a hip and fun neighborhood in the heart of the city. I teach science at the Seattle Academy of Arts and Sciences. I also coach the varsity girls' soccer team, which just won the league title and is on its way to divisional play. During the summer I have been spending some time in Zambia doing service work in schools, clinics, and a hospice.
During your time here, you were an important part of Cowgirl teams that beat BYU for the first time in UW history. You shot the game winning goal against BYU in overtime, what was that feeling like for you?
We were up 2-0 going into the half and could not believe that we actually had a chance to beat such a great team. I remember being nervous before the second half knowing that there is nothing worse than a 2-0 lead. My fears were realized when they scored two goals to equalize. I remember receiving a throw-in from the sideline, controlling it with my chest, and then hitting a shot that went into the upper right hand corner of the goal. It was a sudden death goal but I didn't realize the game was over until the referee blew the whistle and told me that we had won. It was shocking. I don't think I spoke for a few minutes but just reveled in the fact that for the first time ever, we had actually beat BYU. It was an amazing feeling, one that I will not soon forget.
You, along with two other teammates (Lori Scheider and Kristen Stangl) were the first Cowgirls in soccer history to be named to the First Team All MWC; did you know at the time that you were the first?
I knew we were the first but I was more focused on winning in the first round of the conference tournament. It was more important at the time for us to make it past the first round than the accolades that we received. Unfortunately, we were still not able to accomplish that goal.
It seemed like you battled multiple injuries during your career, how did you stay positive and overcome all the obstacles?
I do not actually think that I stayed positive. I was frustrated, as any athlete would be. That is probably the reason that I kept on re-injuring my hamstring, I wanted to play so badly that I would hardly sit still in order to be wrapped properly. My close friend AJ Yates, who also started the Stampede (our fan club), encouraged me the most during my ACL recovery. He and others in the training staff were positive for me and gave me the encouragement that I needed to come back and be as good of a player, if not better than I was prior to the injury.
You still hold the record for shot attempts in one season with 73, what were some things that the team and or you did that contributed to that?
We were a good team that season. We worked hard for each other and also communicated well. My mid-fielders knew me as a player well enough to give me the ball at the right moment so I could take a shot. My other forward (Mari Gomes) could place the ball anywhere I needed it. We all worked well together which helped me perform my job as a striker better. It was a great season!
Do you still keep up with UW soccer?
I do, although I have not been able to travel to Laramie as much as I would like. It has been great to see their progress via Facebook and the UW athletics website. I also have some friends in Laramie that let me know about the team.
Do you stay in contact with your teammates? If so, who are they?
I am in close contact with some of my teammates including Meghan Racette, Katy Mak and Celia White. Others I keep up with via Facebook.
What was it like playing with your sister at the collegiate level?
It was a bit surreal. I didn't know if it would be the right fit for her but she found her way. It was great to be on the same field together since we had not done that since my senior year in high school. It was great to be able to connect with her on some scoring opportunities. She assisted both of my goals in my senior game against University of Northern Colorado!
Do you still find time to play?
I play on a women's team as well as a coed team but the hamstring issues are still there. I think I'm getting old!
You scored 24 goals during your career at UW, making you the all time leading scorer, how does it feel to know you still hold that record?
It's great that I still hold the record, but I want the Wyoming soccer program to be successful. It is more important to me that they go on to win the conference and play in the NCAA tournament. I challenge their strikers to take the record from me.
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