By: David Carter/GCU Staff
Another weekend of progress.
Both GCU Men’s Club Soccer teams, GCU Purple and GCU White, survived pool play at this past weekend’s Aztec Cup in San Diego. Both squads were eliminated in the first round of elimination play.
GCU Purple lost in the Premier Division (the highest men’s division at the tournament) Quarterfinals to California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo, 3-0.
GCU White lost in the Silver Division Semifinals to the Camp Pendleton Football Club, 5-0.
“Our last two games were against the two teams that played in the championship,” said Thompson. “We played (eventual tournament champion University of Southern California) the last game of pool play, and it was really tough. Games of that caliber only make you better.”
If Lopes’ Head Coach Lance Thompson wanted to see how tough the potential competition could be when the playoffs begin later this month, he found it by placing GCU Purple in the top tier in San Diego.
The Lopes came out of pool play undefeated, but had to scramble to do so. After an opening 1-0 win over Weber State University (Utah), GCU battled back twice against University of California-San Diego, scoring with five seconds left to salvage a 3-3 tie. That set up the matchup with USC, which the Lopes gladly settled for a 2-2 tie, tagging the Trojans with their first goals allowed this season.
That sent the Lopes to the quarters, where they couldn’t avoid the shutout against SLO.
“The reality is that the top teams in the region are USC, Cal Poly SLO and UC Davis,” said Thompson. “We do not have teams like that in our league. The level of competition is for us to work on ourselves.”
GCU White was one of just four teams that reached elimination play in the Silver Division. The Lopes split a pair of 2-0 decisions, topping Florida Atlantic University to start the tournament, then suffering the first of back-to-back shutouts against California-State Polytechnic University, Pomona to end pool play.
GCU then ran into a buzzsaw in the semifinal from Camp Pendleton to finish the weekend.
The two GCU teams come home from California to face each other in conference play this Friday, Oct.4 at 7 pm at GCU’s Prescott Field. Admission is FREE.