October 25, 2005
Thank you for those individuals who sent me e-mails, letters, and calls regarding the last Soccerology lesson. Your requests and compliments are noted.
I hope everyone is adequately bundled up for the winter temperatures. It's going to be a cold one so gather those spare blankets from your closet and start the fire because the Dallas heat is gone. Despite some rumors from Rich and Danny of incoming snow, the weather is still bearable for now. Snow would be so awesome though. I remembered my freshman and sophomore year when it surprisingly snowed in Dallas, and the team had a huge snow ball fight. I'll never forget it when Duke, Colin, and I made snowmen and snowangels all day when it snowed.
Enough small talk, let's get down to business. After another successful weekend at home against UCF and FIU we were 6-0 in conference. Yet, the festivities of the weekend ended quickly as we focused on our next opponent and rival, Tulsa University.
This week's training started out intense and demanding as we did the infamous "Brazilian drill." It has been a while since our last Brazilian drill and, therefore, everyone was enthusiastic and prepared to complete the exercise. As Friday (game day) neared, Coach shortened practices. The demands of the season thus far took a toll on a lot of us - sore legs, bumps and bruises, fatigue.
We departed SMU Thursday morning via bus to Tulsa, Oklahoma. It was a great little trip. We got there and had some time to relax and walk around for lunch. Duke, Kellan, Dario, Chase, Mynor, Tim, Phil and I went to a nearby Chinese food place, "Fortune Chef." It was pretty good until I found out that we had to pay for our own fortune cookies. I was a little disappointed...whenever I go to a Chinese restaurant I always look forward to opening up the fortune cookies to see the contents inside. I like surprises.
Since we're on the subject of fortune cookies, I want to offer you an interesting tidbit about those little things. Since many people affiliate Chinese food with fortune cookies, I want to make it clear that fortune cookies originated in San Francisco, not China. Just FYI. Take it home...chew it.
The game was a thriller. Tulsa had eliminated us from the NCAA playoffs last year, and a friendly rivalry had formed between us over the past three years. Furthermore, the game was televised, and a good crowd came out to watch the match. The anticipation was palpable.
In the first half, the score remained 0-0. However, in the second half a total of five goals were scored by both teams. Tulsa scored first off a penalty kick, but we soon found the equalizer off a rebound from Kellan's shot, which Duke skillfully tapped in. Tulsa answered with another goal to set the game, 2-1; however, again we replied with another equalizer in the last ten minutes from a hard-driven shot from our attacking center back, Jay Needham. With merely two minutes remaining in regulation, Scottie slotted the game-winner to improve our record in C-USA to 7-0. His birthday was that week, and what a birthday present that goal was on national television.
We drove back to Dallas after our game and arrived at 2am. It was a great road trip for both teams--the whole SMU soccer community--and everyone was ecstatic with the win. The Girl's soccer team also had a successful weekend winning two of their matches. Ugo Ihemelu (the senior and captain of last year's team, currently playing for the Los Angeles Galaxy), who watched the game on TV, called to congratulate the team on a job well done. We were sitting comfortably atop our conference, but it was not over yet. We have two conference games left this weekend against East Carolina and South Carolina, and then the conference tournament begins.