I'll have a statistical breakdown of the soccer season out soon enough, but I did want to put out a call for folks in and around Bloomington who enjoy soccer to come on out and support the IU Hoosiers (11-5-3) against Xavier (14-2-5) in their second-round matchup in the NCAA tourney. It's supposed to be a (relatively) lovely day out, sunny and in the mid-50's. Why not come out and watch the Hoosiers play the Musketeers?
When I saw the team up in Evanston, they seemed a bit out of sorts. I think a good cheering section might help them lift their spirits and have some fun. There's no question that they're a talented team fully capable of making the College Cup (Final Four) this season. They beat #8 overall seed St Louis and tied #10 Louisville on the road, and hung with both #1 Notre Dame and #5 Akron before narrowly falling 1-0 in both contests. I hoped they would be carrying a bit of momentum into the tourney, but maybe they've just gotten some of their bad bounces and off games worked out before the elimination games. And really, one good game is really all team needs to get that identity back.
Goalkeeper Luis Soffner has had a really nice year between the pipes, Eriq Zavaleta is on his way to having a special career as a striker, and local boy Caleb Konstanski is a force on the backline. Xavier (who has a great graphic on their team landing page) are led by scorers Luke Spencer and Matt Walker, and they have five guys with 6 or more assists (only AJ Corrado falls into that category for the Hoosiers, with 9). It should be a good game, but the Hoosiers have the advantage of hosting, and have a higher RPI.
Xavier had a nice 1-0 win over Kentucky, and notably tied with Northwestern, beat St. Louis, but they are pretty green when it comes to the postseason. If IU can come out with focus and execute, I bet they'll start having fun as soon as they start scoring.
Come out and help the Hoosiers, tomorrow 1pm EST, at Bill Armstorng stadium!