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Sunday, June 16
The Indiana Daily Student

sports men's soccer

IU to play SMU, No. 9 UCLA this weekend


IU men’s soccer opens its regular season 7:30 Friday night against SMU, but as recently as Aug. 17, IU Coach Todd Yeagley was in the midst of a potentially season-altering decision.

With the loss of four-year starting goalkeeper Luis Soffner to graduation, Yeagley’s squad was left with a void in goal.

Four goalkeepers, none of which had seen a minute of regular-season time for the Hoosiers last season, entered training camp with hopes of landing the starting position in between the posts: freshman Colin Webb, and sophomores Sean Weidman, Michael Soderlund and Kyle Wieschhaus.

Soderlund, who started most of the Hoosiers’ spring and summer exhibitions, established himself as the early favorite for the position, but was unable to distance himself from Weidman and Webb, who came to Bloomington as the seventh-ranked goalkeeper in his graduating class.

Two weeks and two pre-season matches later, Yeagley has found his man, announcing Soderlund as his starting goalkeeper in a post-practice interview Wednesday.

“Michael will start in goal this weekend,” he said. “We know more about him. Colin and Sean are doing well and pushing him, but now we feel that with his time here at IU and the way he’s played, he fits the bill right now.”

Soderlund, a native of Boise, Idaho, will lead the Hoosiers’ back line in this weekend’s season-opening Adidas/IU Credit Union Classic, an annual four-team tournament featuring some of the strongest fields in the event’s history: No. 1 IU, No. 7 Notre Dame, No. 9 UCLA and SMU.

“It’ll be really entertaining, and you’ll see some talent,” Yeagley said. “These four teams are all legitimately deep tournament teams. Generally the field is very good, but this year it’s extremely deep.”

SMU, Friday night’s opponent, collected a record of 10-5-5 in 2012 en route to an NCAA Tournament appearance.

The Mustangs are led by unanimous pre-season All-American Athletic Conference selection Damian Rosales, a junior midfielder. The Mustangs also have 2012 Conference USA Goalkeeper of the Year Jaime Ibarra, who allowed just 1.12 goals per game in the net for SMU last season.

Yeagley said SMU is a talented team, but admitted he was still gathering information on the program.

“We’re really focusing on our preparations, but we have to be really good on our individual principles against a team like this that we know can individually create,” Yeagley said. “They’re a team that’s always in the deep tournament hunt.
“We know the quality’s going to be there.”

IU will play its second game of the weekend Sunday against No. 9 UCLA in a game that has drawn national attention as one of the country’s most anticipated early-season matchups.

Despite the buildup for Sunday’s clash and IU’s attempt to set an all-time attendance record at Bill Armstrong Stadium for the match, Yeagley said he hasn’t given much thought to UCLA and remains focused on the Hoosiers’ first game.

Follow reporter Alden Woods on Twitter @acw9293

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