Sept. 24, 2006
Raleigh, NC - Last season the FSU soccer team opened the season with a seven-game win streak before falling to North Carolina. This year the Seminoles opened the season with a six-game win streak before falling to North Carolina. In both 2005 and 2006 FSU (6-1, 0-1) followed its first loss of the season with a game versus NC State (6-1-2, 1-0). Last season FSU responded immediately with a 3-1 win over the Pack. They will get another chance to step out and try to get back on track versus the Wolfpack Sunday at 12:00 p.m. in Raleigh.
"I definitely think we are ready to get back out there," said starting defender Libby Gianeskis. "We just want to get back out and play a game so we can start to regain our focus. We will go out and fight to get a win and get back on track."
NC State is one of only two original ACC schools that FSU has a lifetime winning record against. The Seminoles hold a 6-3-2 edge against NC State after last season's win in Tallahassee. In regular season games over the last seven years, FSU has posted a 5-0-2 record against NC State, which is Florida State's best record versus any other original ACC school over that span.
"What has happened in the past versus NC State gives us a little boost of confidence but we know how good they are this year," said Gianeskis. "You can't rely on the past. We won't overlook anybody. Every time we step out it is a challenge. We know we have to play our best or we will get beat."
After suffering a loss in its ACC opener last season, Florida State went 7-1 the rest of the way and finished tied for second in the conference standings. That will be the challenge facing FSU this season as they enter the game with the Wolfpack already 0-1 in the standings.
"I am not really looking at us as a 0-1 team," said Gianeskis. "We played six games that we won before the ACC opener. We are going to focus on the positive things we have done and try to carry that through conference play."
For the second straight year Florida State opened its conference schedule with the most dominant team in ACC history. If any of the returning Seminoles needed a reminder of what it was like to play in the ACC, they got it Thursday. For the five newcomers that saw action in the game they also get an eye-opening look at what it means to play a conference game in the ACC.
"I think after Thursday everyone has a better recollection of what it is like to play an ACC game," said Kirsten van de Ven. "When you start out your conference season with North Carolina you definitely are ready for everything that will follow. We get tested right of the gate in ACC play and hopefully we will be better for that."
Despite a 2-1 loss in Chapel Hill that is by no means an embarrassing result the top-ranked Seminoles know they have room for improvement. They allowed two goals in a game for the first time all year and they surrendered a second half goal for the first time as well.
"We need to play faster, more one touch," said van de Ven of FSU's play through seven games. "It is difficult because there are a lot of little factors we need to work on changing. It is tough but we have to keep getting better. We won't stop working at it until it all falls into place."
The ACC meeting between FSU and NC State is slated for a noon kickoff at Method Road Stadium in Raleigh, NC. Game Tracker will be available for the match at Seminoles.com.