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Saturday, November 19, 2011

A Memorable Season Comes To A Close


 


The following blog is the second in a series of entries written by Xavier Men's Soccer sophomore defender Andy Kaplan as his team enters the NCAA Tournament after winning it's second Atlantic 10 Championship Title.




November 18, 2011 

Today we made the long bus trip home from Morgantown after losing last night, 2-1 in overtime after we had managed to claw our way back into the game with about ten minutes to go in regulation. Aside from the fact that we eventually lost off of a header that bounced in off of the post, the game was even harder to stomach because we knew that we hadn't really given WVU our best shot for the entire game.

After the game, all of the parents that had come to watch set up our usual tailgate in our hotel, and everyone kind of sat around and lamented the end of a great season. It was very sad, but eventually the sadness turned slightly to reflection of what a great, fun season it had been.

The bus ride home this morning was nowhere near as happy as the one home from St. Louis last weekend, but it wasn't a funeral by any means. We all enjoyed each other's company one last time, laughing and joking and singing after the usual quiet period at the beginning. To finish the ride, we put in the movie "Just Go With It," which everyone enjoyed, even the coaches (it is a rare thing that they admit to liking a movie that we pick).

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Behind The Scenes: Xavier In the NCAA Tournament





The following blog is the second in a series of entries written by Xavier Men's Soccer sophomore defender Andy Kaplan as his team enters the NCAA Tournament after winning it's second Atlantic 10 Championship Title.






November 16, 2011

Today started with practice at the usual time and we got on the bus right after to start the five-hour trip to Morgantown.


The first couple of hours were quiet study and sleep time, so I just read a book and took a quick nap. After we stopped at a rest station, our movie of choice, "The Prestige", got put in, definitely a good choice. The guys that had seen the movie before (myself included) had a great time watching the reactions of the guys that hadn't when the big twist at the end came around.

We got stuck in traffic and some bad weather, so the trip took about an hour longer than expected, but I caught a bit of extra sleep so I didn't mind. We made it safely to the hotel, jogged and stretched to shake our legs out, and headed to dinner at the same place that we went last year.

After dinner we walked back to the hotel and had our usual team meeting. All in all, it feels a lot like last year, but hopefully there'll be a different result this time around.

-Andy

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Xavier's Kaplan Brings A-10 Fans To The NCAA's

The following blog is part of a series of entries written by Xavier Men's Soccer sophomore defender Andy Kaplan as his team enters the NCAA Tournament after winning it's second Atlantic 10 Championship Title.





Selection Show and First Practice

Monday was the selection show. I feel like it would have been slightly more dramatic if we didn’t know that we were in the tournament, but it was still interesting waiting to find out who we were going to play.

Just like last year, a ton of administrative people came out (the AD, our compliance director, the whole academic advising department, etc.) to see where we would end up and our whole team sat in front of a monitor that had the show running.

Unlike last year though, they revealed all of the teams in the beginning of the show, so we found out right away that we are heading to Morgantown, West Virginia. After we got done cheering it sunk in a bit that we were heading back to the same place to play the same team that we played last year. If we beat West Virginia, we get to head down to Maryland, which will be our third top 10 opponent of the season, and definitely an incredible experience, but first we have to focus on West Virginia.

Tuesday, we had our first practice after the 290-minute plus tournament weekend. People went out yesterday and jogged and stretched for recovery, the legs were a little bit heavy. To compensate, we had a relatively light practice. We were told after practice that we were going to be recognized at the basketball game, but some of the older guys on the team talked to coach and convinced him to hold off on that.

We’ve been out of town for three days in three out of the past four weeks, so everybody’s got more than a bit of work and sleep to catch up on. Other than that, we’re just getting packed and prepared to head out to WVU on Wednesday.

-Andy