APU men’s and women’s soccer seeks strong finish

Men’s Soccer

Coming off a series of ties and losses from the past four games, men’s soccer hoped to capitalize against Dixie state in their PacWest opener last Thursday night. Despite a goal in the second half from sophomore midfielder Mathias Thomsen, the Cougars were unable to secure the win and lost to Dixie State by 2-1.

Hoping for a better record at this point in the season, head coach David Blomquist emphasized the need to refine the team’s offensive strategy for more in-game opportunities and better finishes on plays.

“I think when we step on the game field, we just need to finish our chances,” Blomquist said. “In practice, we’ve been sharp and a lot of [goals] have been going in, and we’ve been creating opportunities. We just have to find a way to push past that and get some W’s, but in terms of who we are as a group, we are where I’d thought we’d be. We just need that little extra.”

Senior midfielder Raul Martinez expressed the same sentiment toward the morale of the team.

We played well, but the fact that we gave them two goals is very upsetting,” Martinez said. “We’re looking to bounce back. We’ve been playing well…. Our main thing has just been finishing. We were the better team, but we just have to show it on the scoreboard next time.”

The team is currently 0-4-2 and will play Cal Baptist on Tuesday, Sept. 27, before taking on Dominican on Thursday, Sept. 29 at home.

Women’s Soccer

The Cougars achieved victory in their PacWest opener, beating Dixie State 2-0 on Thursday, Sept. 22 and collecting their third win for the season.

Despite a quiet first half, goals from senior midfielder Victoria Kovatch and freshman defender/midfielder Kelsey Bushman sealed the win for the Lady Cougs’ early on in the second half.

Despite mixed results for the women’s team in the first five games, the team left Thursday’s contest with a positive attitude.

I think we’re still trying to figure out who we are as a group,” head coach Jason Surrell said. “At the second half, I think we saw the old APU, just the mentality that we are going to get this done, whatever it takes. That was a good second half.”

Surrell did make the point, however, that even in a win there is always something to improve upon.

“There were moments when we were too direct, when we could have possessed the ball more, so we’re trying to keep that mental aspect of trying to keep possession of it,” Surrell said.

Senior midfielder and defender Lindsey Ryals believes that the team made huge strides during their victory over Dixie State. Confident that the morale of the team has been boosted, Ryals believes that offense will be the focus for the women’s team this season to solidify an already promising record.

Today I think we finally found our rhythm,” Ryals said. “We calmed down in the second half, and it’s been a good season because we’ve learned a lot, but we need to keep learning and keep getting better. I feel that after this game we’re going to be better united.”

The women are currently 3-3-1 this season. They will also play at Cal Baptist on Tuesday, Sept. 27, before taking on Dominican on Thursday, Sept. 29 at home.