GAMEDAY CENTRAL: No. 1 Florida State Set To Face UCF Tonight At 7:00 pm On SUN Sports
Sept. 13, 2006
Tallahassee, FL -- Coming off an emotional victory versus its biggest rival in front of over 4,500 fans, the top-ranked FSU soccer team (4-0) will look to continue its perfect start to the season Wednesday night when UCF comes to town. The last time Florida State came off a big win, the Seminoles went on the road and struggled to produce two victories following a victory over defending National Champion Portland. The Seminoles will try to respond more appropriately when they meet UCF at 7:00 p.m.
"I think learning to focus for every game is all part of maturing as a team," said FSU Head Coach Mark Krikorian. "My hope is that we will come out, give UCF the respect they deserve and that our team will have a good performance. It was a great night here last Friday with the game against Florida. We need to comeback with a second good performance. We can't just rely on a good game once every other competition."
This is the eighth all-time meeting between Florida State and UCF. The Seminoles lead the series 5-2 and have won five of the last six since losing the first ever meeting between the schools in 1998. Last season Florida State recorded its third shutout in the series when the Seminoles defeated the Knights 3-0 in a driving Orlando rain. The Golden Knights have allowed at least two goals to FSU in each of the last six meetings as FSU has averaged over three goals a game in the span. This decade the only time the Knights have held Florida State below three goals was in 2004. That year FSU scored twice versus UCF in Tallahassee.
"Hopefully we continue to bring the same type of offensive focus to this game Wednesday night that we have in the past," said All-American India Trotter. "We want to come out and play our best. We will need to bring our best because UCF is a traditional NCAA Tournament team. They have great players and this will be a hard fought game."
Last season it was FSU's two All-Americans that had big days offensively versus the Knights. Sel Kuralay had two goals and an assist and Trotter had a goal and an assist. Ali Mims recorded the shutout as she increased her shutout streak to 155:33 in her career versus UCF.
"We try to approach every game with the same sort of attitude," said Kuralay. "What happened in the past will have no affect on what happens Wednesday. For India and me our main job is to score goals. This year we have developed an even better understanding of playing together. What is happening between us on the field has become so natural now sometimes we don't even know what we are going to do next. If we don't know, it is even harder for the opposition's defense to know what we are going to do."
Wednesday night will mark the first time UCF has been back to Tallahassee since 2004 when they stunned FSU defeating the Seminoles 3-2. That season FSU was on a 5-0-1 run before losing to UNC and then UCF in the final regular season game of the year. Even worse then losing the game on senior night was the way FSU lost the match. The Seminoles blew a 2-0 halftime lead and gave up the game-winning goal to UCF with just 45 seconds remaining marking the last time FSU lost a non-conference match at home.
"They beat us on senior night. It was not a very good day for us," said senior Kelly Rowland. "You never want to lose on your home field but especially not on a night when you are honoring your seniors. You can't go back and change what happened two years ago. We just have to do our best not to let it happen again Wednesday night."
Wednesday night's game is set for a 7:00 p.m. start at the Seminole Soccer Complex. There is no admission charge for the game. Fans who are unable to attend can follow all the action on SUN Sports live telecast of the tilt. There will also be an Internet radio broadcast at Seminoles.com along with Game Tracker.