The Rochester weather can’t deter our men’s club soccer team from victory.
Retreating to the warmth and snow-free surface of the indoor league, they now play every Tuesday at the Rochester Sports Garden against local teams. The spring season started up last Tuesday, Feb. 15.
“Our goal for this season is to protect the league championship title that we won in last year’s B-League and claim the A-League title,” club vice-president and team center back Chad Hunter said.
The fall season was a great success for the team. Competing as part of the New York Collegiate Club Soccer League, alongside 18 teams in New York State, the team earned the No. 2 seed and went into the playoffs. The team battled their way to the semi-finals, finishing third.
Boasting a wide range of players from freshmen to graduate students, the team rotates its players in and out of games to keep everyone competitive. Hunter attributes the success of the team to this rotation.
“We’ve been trying to rotate more players so everyone is still motivated and works hard because they’re playing for a spot on the team,” Hunter said.
The choice to create a system of play in which more people get time on the field is a dramatic shift from last year. That season, only 11 players played in any given game. Players would then stop coming to practices as the season progressed, because they were never given the chance to play.
“This year we’re definitely a tighter group. Everyone gets along really well. In the past it just felt like a bunch of seniors playing,” Hunter said.
The club has become so popular in recent days that it has had to sport a second faction. It now boasts both an “A” squad and “B” squad.
In their most recent game, the “A” squad downed Chili United, 14-4, while the “B team” fell to a highly-skilled Team Bosnia on Tuesday, Feb. 22. Both teams are now 1-1.
While the team travelled around the region weekly to compete in matches during the Fall season, it now has to limit its travel plans this semester due to the weather. Not to be discouraged, the club has made use of the facilities available close to home in order to both get some solid practice time in, as well as open the door to the campus at large to share in the world’s most popular and beloved sport.
The team has begun hosting the Winter Indoor Tournament in Spurrier Gym. The tournament, which is open to any and all players and teams on campus, will take place every Friday until the end of semester.
Lim is a member of the class 2014.