- Campus copes with holiday grief
- New water plan saves big money
- Campus police offer holiday safety tips
- Alys Stephen Center Screens Walking the Camino: Six Ways to Santiago
- Hospital feeds underprivileged new moms
- UAB’s Alys Stephens Center presents Yo-Yo Ma Dec. 6
- Southern Miss tops Blazers, 62-27, in season ending game
- Henry Panion selected for 2014 Alabama African-American History Calendar
- Enjoy Christmas at the Alys Dec. 2, “The Season’s First Jingle”
- Engineering’s Ning wins ASTM International award
- Collat School of Business unveils sign at celebration
- Heudebert elected master by American College of Physicians
- Anti-aging strategies can improve more than looks
- On campus ‘blackout’ taken in stride
- Bariatric Surgery Services to present annual fashion show Nov. 25
UAB men’s soccer to face #21 Charlotte in Friday showdown
The UAB men’s soccer team, ranked No. 8, will take on No. 21 Charlotte on Friday at 7:00 p.m. in the second game of UAB’s 16th “Soccer for a Cure” Classic.
The Blazers have won the tournament title nine times, including the last three years, but Friday’s game will be tough.
“Charlotte’s a very good team. One of the hardest working teams in the county,” said Head Coach Mike Getman. “It’s a very physical team, so the key for us is going to be to deal with the physical nature of the game, but still keep our composure and play the way we want to play.”
It will be a hard match filled with old resentments as UAB lost to Charlotte in the last two NCAA tournaments.
“It’s a big rivalry, no question,” Getman said. “They’ve spoiled two very good years in a row for us, and our players certainly know that. This is a new game against (a) new team, (with) new players for both teams that weren’t on the field that last year, so our focus isn’t on revenge from last season. Our focus is on playing as well as we can against a team that we know is going to be tough.”
Now a top-ten team, UAB moved up in the ranks after defeating the defending national champions, Indiana, last Friday 2-1. Last week’s dramatic victory will have a positive effect on the team going into Friday’s game, according to forward Diego Navarrete, “It’s like an extra energy because you feel like you have a good team. You’re playing good. You feel confident, so that I think is the biggest impact on our team.”
Last Friday’s game had record attendance with 3,025 screaming fans in the crowd, and Getman said he hopes to see a similar crowd tomorrow night.
“Soccer’s a sport where the energy from the crowd really does transfer onto the field, and so if we can have that same kind of boisterous crowd all day long, it’ll make a huge difference.”
Tomorrow’s game will be the third time this season the Blazers take on a ranked opponent.
“It’s not an accident that we’re playing good teams early. Every time you play against a good opponent, you learn what you’re good at, but you also learn areas that you need to improve on,” Getman said. “And that’s why we’ve scheduled it this way, so we can learn early on what we’ve got to get better at.”
“We learned things after playing VCU. We learned more things after playing Indiana. Hopefully, we’re correcting all those little things, but each time we want to get a little bit better and obviously be the best we can be at the end of the season.”
Navarrete agreed. “That’s very important to start with good teams because that’s when you have time to improve, see what you did wrong … You know your mistakes, so you don’t do it again.”
Navarrete will likely play a key role in Friday’s game. He tied the game against Indiana with a penalty kick in the final minute of the second half, pushing the game into overtime. According to the most recent NCAA statistical rankings, the junior from Chile is nationally ranked 2nd in points per game (3.00), 3rd in goals per game (1.33), 3rd in total goals (4) and 4th in total points (9).
“(Scoring)’s very important for a forward,” Navarrete said on his performance this season. “It’s something that you have to do. You’re supposed to score, so that’s very good.”
“Diego’s been a tremendous player for us for the past two years, but he’s been hurt the whole time. He’s battled a number of different injuries. This year, he’s completely healthy. He had the whole summer to get fit and stay healthy, and it’s showing in his performance,” Getman said.
UAB will aim to set a new record attendance this Friday at West Campus Field at 7 p.m. so come out and join the ‘Green Army’ in their support of Getman’s Blazers on their quest to remain undefeated on the season.