Every day, students walk past the soccer field and see the soccer team practicing and working hard. The dedication of the men’s soccer team paid off in their fi rst pre-season game against Stetson University on Aug. 25. The team played extremely well together, considering it was their first time playing as a team.
No doubt, though, the Tars could not have played so well with just the skill of one person. Each player contributed to the team’s success in different ways.
There were some keys players in this game. Joris Combe ‘13 scored the first goal of the pre-season. Combe also cleared two balls from the line when the goalie left the box. Midfielder/ forward Brad Welch ‘11 had quite a few shots on goal. He also pulled some good steals and ball control; he was a big contributor to this game’s success. Matt Bauchle played outstanding defense and in one instance cleared a ball from the line that was just inches from going in.
Unfortunately, the Stetson Hatt ers scored during the last seven minutes of the game. With 30 seconds left in the game the Tars had possession of the ball, when Blade Zych ‘11 scored suddenly and the crowd went wild. However, the notion of victory was squelched by an off side call from the officials. Despite the call, Zych and the entire team had shown a great deal of teamwork and sportsmanship during this first game. As is common, the referees made calls that not everyone agreed with, but the Tars still did not give up and continued to play hard.
After the game, Zych and Thomas Biddinger ‘11 were asked how they had felt going into the game and their feelings toward the outcome. Zych said, “Everyone was pretty hyped about our fi rst game of the season.”
Biddinger commented, “The outcome was a little disappointing, but it was our first time playing as a whole team. We played very well with the new team members. But, we will go back and watch the video and see what we need to improve.” The coach stated that he was very proud of the team.
The final score of the game was 1-1. Come out and cheer on the No. 10 Tars at their first regular season game tonight at 7 p.m. where they will face off against the Florida Memorial Lions.