Calvin College senior Trent Vegter is continuing a family tradition.

A native of Hudsonville and a graduate of Hudsonville Unity Christian High School, Vegter is a team captain on a nationally ranked Calvin men’s soccer team that won its 12th consecutive MIAA title.

Vegter was preceded at Calvin by sister Jessica and brothers Tyler and Travis—all of whom found soccer success with the Knights. Jessica was a forward on three MIAA championship women’s soccer teams at Calvin. Tyler was a spark plug at forward with the Calvin men’s soccer team that won four MIAA crowns and reached the national championship final in both 2009 and 2011. Travis played one year with Tyler, reaching the national championship game in 2011 and helping the Knights win four straight league titles as well. A two-time All-American, Travis is third on Calvin’s all-time scoring list for goals and points.

The Vegter clan (from left): Trent ’19, Travis ’15, Jessica Kuipers ’09, and Tyler ’12
The Vegter clan (from left): Trent ’19, Travis ’15, Jessica Kuipers ’09, and Tyler ’12

Unlike his older siblings, however, Trent made his mark as a defender. Now in his fourth year as a starter on the defensive back line, Trent has helped lead Calvin to four MIAA titles, including three trips to the NCAA III semifinals and one trip to the national championship match (At press time the Knights were competing in the 2018 NCAA III tournament.) As a sophomore and junior he was selected as a Division III All-American. He was also named the Defender of the Year last fall, as well as the MIAA’s Most Valuable Player for two consecutive years.

Growing up in the Vegter household, he was often forced to scrape and claw his way to the top. “There was always a lot of competition between us,” Trent said of his life growing up as the youngest Vegter sibling.

When it came time to select a college after high school, Vegter was ready to become a Calvin Knight. “I had a little bit of interest from some Division I schools, but I did not want soccer to be like a job,” he said. “I had the goal of being an engineer, and I had the goal of playing soccer. Calvin gave me both options, so it was a pretty easy choice.”

Calvin also had men’s soccer coach Ryan Souders making a strong sales pitch. “From the beginning, Coach (Souders) made it clear that I would not just be another Vegter but that I would have a unique role on the team. I could see his passion for Calvin and soccer, and that passion has remained consistent during my time here. He wants us to be the best we can be on and off the field.”

At Calvin, he has played in front of large home crowds, particularly overflow crowds against rival Hope. “You can’t beat a night game at Zuidema on the grass under the lights,” said Vegter. “I love playing for Calvin and I love the way our crowd supports us.”