By: Chase Gardiner/GCU Staff
The Grand Canyon University Men’s Club Soccer team competed in their most important match of the year Wednesday night, a do-or-die bout against Arizona State University. The Lopes guaranteed themselves a spot in the upcoming Western Regionals with a 3-0 shutout win, while also eliminating the Sun Devils from contention.
Following the men’s first victory over ASU on the road last Saturday, Lopes Head Coach Lance Thompson was clear that the team’s success could be directly traced back to their nearly flawless execution of the game plan. Furthermore, Thompson suggested that his team’s chances of claiming another win against ASU would rest entirely on his athlete’s abilities to replicate their on-field execution.
“Honestly, this second game against ASU felt exactly the same as the first,” said Thompson. “Besides a goal we gave up in the first game, which was really due to excellent play on behalf of ASU, our team performed almost identically, and that’s really great to see at this point in the year.”
While the momentum of back-to-back wins is surely a bonus for any team preparing for regional competition, the Lopes might have discovered an even greater advantage. Consistency.
“We are playing the best soccer that we’ve played all year,” said Thompson. “We are ideally peaking at the right time, and finding ways to compete consistently, which is exactly how you want it to be as a coach.”
With their first match of the Western Regionals slated for November 2, in San Luis Obispo, California, the Lopes have just a little over a week to make any tweaks necessary before regional competition begins. With the groove they have found themselves in lately though, Thompson seems inclined to stick to the same plan that has gotten them this far.
“We are going to maintain the course and continue to focus on the things that are key principles for us, which is what we have been focused on so far,” said Thompson. “No doubt the tournament will be tough, but if we can stick to these same points and principles, we will do just fine.”
Make sure to stay tuned on the Men’s Club Soccer home page, for updates on the Lopes’ performance in the upcoming Western Regionals.
Interested in joining the men’s club soccer team? Contact the coach to learn more!