After his successful 2006 season playing forward, he moved to the midfield in 2007. The accolades and awards moved right along too. He scored 3 goals and had 8 assists. He was named to the Pacific West All-Conference Second Team and the NSCAA Division II All-Far West Region Second Team.
These stats and awards become even more impressive when you consider that the Vulcan program is just two years old. That is correct, two years old! In fact, Geis was the third signing in the program's history.
One would think that the Vulcans who are neophytes to collegiate soccer would be satisfied with several wins per season, but Geis and the rest of his teammates have set a lofty goal for 2008. They will attempt to capture the Pacific West Conference Championship in the program's third year of existence.
Soccer City FC spoke with Geis about the Hawaii-Hilo program and the state of soccer on the Hawaiian Islands. We also sought his prediction on UEFA's Champions League winner.
-You were the third player ever to commit to the play for the Vulcans. How did you come to the decision?
A: Well before I decided to come to Hilo, I knew Coach Gordon because his son played on my club team, REAL Hawaii. So I already knew the coach and it was also close to home. I knew that it would be the first season for UH Hilo and I thought that I could build the program for years to come. For our first season, we did alright as a first year program. The second year we made a huge improvement. That is what I wanted to do when I came to Hilo.
-What have you taken away from your experience of scoring the first goal in team history?
A: Scoring the first goal in team history was a great honor in starting off my collegiate soccer career at Hilo. Playing in my first game in college, I was really nervous and scared just because I was a freshman. I was playing against older and bigger guys than me. When I scored that goal, I felt like all the pressure was off of me and I could go out there and finally play the way I know I can play. Even though we didn't win that game, scoring that goal was the best thing about the game. It also came off of a 40 yard shot that went over the keepers head. It was probably one of the best goals I have ever scored.
-Did you enjoy your time at forward in 2006 or midfield in 2007?
A: I enjoyed playing forward in 2006, but I loved playing center mid in 2007. With a better team in our second year, I knew that we had good players and I could distribute the ball around to the forwards and outside mids. Playing center mid also gave me the time to penetrate up the field and make plays. I like to have the ball at my feet and playing center mid was the perfect position.
-What was the toughest away game in 2007?
A: The toughest away game in 2007 had to be at Western Washington’s field. It was raining, really windy, and really cold. It was completely opposite of playing in Hawaii where it’s sunny and warm. So playing at Western Washington was probably the toughest game I have ever played in. The team was also good with bigger and faster players. We had some opportunities but just didn't put them away.
-What challenges still remain with building the program?
A: One challenge that we still face with the program is getting a permanent field to play and practice on. Without a nice field we can't really practice all that well and it also rains a lot in Hilo which makes the field we practice on right now horrible. Another challenge is to get a long term coach. We need a coach that will be able to stay in the program for a while so when the other classes decide to go to Hilo, they will know somewhat how the coach coaches and how he decides to play the players. We are getting our old coach back from the first year and he is a real good coach. Hopefully he can stay a lot longer and help the program build and be successful in years to come.
-What can we expect in 2008 from the team?
A: In 2008, our team should be a contender for the top spot in the Pac West Conference. In 2007, we came in third. With even more players coming in 2008, we should be real successful in reaching our goal which will be the champs of the Pac West Conference. We are returning pretty much everyone from last year and we did well with that team so when the new players come in and a new coach we should at least be in the top 2 and the best team in Hawaii.
-You and your teammates established collegiate soccer on the Big Island. Now professional soccer comes to the Hawaiian Islands with the Pan Pacific Championship. What are your thoughts on the event?
A: My thoughts on the event are that more professional teams should come to Hawaii and play in front of the fans here. Soccer in Hawaii is getting bigger every year and if the pro teams come here to play, the kids will see how it is like to play in the next level. It gives the fans something to go and watch and cheer for. For myself, I am going to go and watch the games and it will be very exciting to see pro teams play because I want to become a pro some day. Watching them, seeing how they play, and what they do will give me an idea on how I should train and play myself. I would really like to see some of the English, Italian, and Spanish teams come and play in Hawaii just to see how they play in front of me and not on TV.
-Who do you think will win the UEFA Champions League this year?
A: I think that Manchester United will win it this year. There team is good at every position. My favorite player is also Cristiano Renaldo and I enjoy watching him play. Barcelona is also another team that could win Champions League because the forwards and midfield that they got is probably one the best in the Champions League. I think that Man U will win it this year even though they tied to Lyon they will overcome that and go all the way.