German defender returns to the Bend to team up with former University coach
South Bend, IN (March 27, 2020) — South Bend Lions is delighted to announce the signing of German defender Samuel Biek, pending League and Federation approval.
The 22-year-old Bethel University alumni will be reunited with his former head coach, Thiago Pinto, and joins the team ahead of the USL League Two season.
The Bad Endbach native returns to play in South Bend after pursuing a master’s in business at Western Michigan University. Last year he started in all 19 matches for the Broncos and was named in the All-North Region Second Team by United Soccer Coaches and the Mid-American Conference team, as well as captaining Grand Rapids in the NPSL, where he was also named to the Great Lakes Conference XI.
During his time at Bethel, the 6’3″ center back played more than 60 games for the Pilots, scoring 20 goals and capped his final season by earning United Soccer Coaches’ and National Christian College Athletic Association All-America first-team accolades.
Biek, who also played for Milwaukee Torrent in 2018, said: “I got so much better throughout the four years I was at Bethel and made the biggest jump in my playing career under Thiago. He has made a considerable impact there and the way he values the person over the player is huge for me.
“That allowed me to become a better person and a better leader. As a center back, you have to lead from the back and I learned more about that from playing for Thiago.
“That was a big thing for me and he’s been a friend and a mentor ever since. I really enjoyed my playing time and I’m excited to come back and do it again.”
Technical Director Pinto added: “Sammy reflects the type of person we would like to attract to South Bend Lions, not only as a key player but as a leader – in the locker room and on the field.
“He reads the game very well, and has a big presence, along with a strong range of passing. He has the look of a player and delivers on the field.
“Sammy certainly has the quality to play at a higher level and when you look at his progression over the last few years since he came over from Germany it is a positive sign of where we are as a club that he wants to be a part of our vision.”
Biek is the fifth player to be revealed for the new expansion franchise after local players, striker Axel Valenzuela, defender Sammy Atkins, and midfielders Cole Rainwater and Ritchie Ontiveros, were revealed on social media on Wednesday and Thursday.
You can listen to an interview with Biek and Pinto on the new South Bend Lions podcast, the River ‘N Roar by Game On, which is available to download now.
Please click here for more info and to listen