Men’s soccer to host NIU/Adidas Invite

By Jacob Onak

Its been a tough couple games for men’s soccer, (0-2-0) but this weekend presents the team with a chance to get back in the win column, as they host their annual NIU/Adidas Invite.

In their first game of the tournament, the Huskies will face Rhode Island, (0-2-1) who are with out a win in their first three games. The Rams are coming off of a 4-4 tie against Bryant, in the Ocean State Soccer Classic.

“We haven’t heard too much,” said captain Mike Mascitti. “I know they are pretty good at set pieces, so that’s something we need to work on. Not just getting to the first ball, but that second ball as well, which is something we’ve struggled with.”

After Friday’s double-overtime loss, there was a question of how the Huskies would respond this week in practice. Coach Eric Luzzi was quite pleased with the attitude of the team.

“On the whole pretty good,” Luzzi said. “We lost a game we shouldn’t of, but the guys know we are a very good team. It was a good lesson for us.”

Tactically, Luzzi knows his team’s speed of play needs to improve.

“Got to move the ball quicker,” Luzzi said. “Not being so content keeping the ball in our own half, but we have got to get the ball in the other team’s half and try and make things happen, not wait for things to happen.”

The Huskies will also play a second game this weekend as they take on the Drake Bulldogs (1-3-0). Coming off of a 1-0 loss against Marquette, the Bulldogs will have their hands full this weekend taking on the Northwestern Wildcats (1-0-2) on Friday before facing the Huskies Sunday.

With two games in a weekend, it is easy to focus on the second game, but the Huskies are staying focused looking ahead to Friday.

“Just taking it one game at a time,” Mascitti said. “Rhode Island is the most important game in the season right now.”

NIU takes on Rhode Island 5 p.m. Friday and Drake 2 p.m. Sunday. Both games are at home at the The Soccer and Track & Field Complex.