Huskies look to rebound against Broncos

By Brian Thomas

NIU men’s soccer begins its two game homestand starting this afternoon, when it hosts MAC opponent Western Michigan.

The Huskies (8-4-0, 0-2-0 MAC) are coming off back-to-back losses to Akron and, most recently, Northwestern, losing 2-0 in both matches.

NIU was disappointed by its recent performances, but the team believes it can turn it around against the Broncos.

“Obviously, we’re disappointed by our performance in our last couple of games,” said Huskies’ senior Francis Otira. “The team’s goal right now is to turn everything around and get back to where we were. To turn it around, we just have to go back to enjoying what we’re doing; enjoy the game, enjoy playing, and I think the result should take care of itself.”

Despite the back-to-back losses, Eric Luzzi, NIU head men’s soccer coach, said the team is in a good place right now.

“To be honest, I think we’re in a very good place right now,” Luzzi said. “We had a meeting on Thursday and sorted some things out. Then we gave the guys three to four days off and told them not to think about soccer for a couple of days. They came back yesterday, were in a very good place, and had two great days of practice.”

This is an important match for the Huskies, as it is a MAC game and they are still looking for their first win in conference.

“It’s big-time, and it has massive importance,” Otira said. “We have to manage the pressure of knowing how big the game is in terms of how it will affect our post-season and getting a good result.”

In order for NIU to be successful, the key is getting back to playing the way they want to play.

“I think in the last four to five games, we have gotten away from playing our style,” Luzzi said. “I think we have had guys that have been trying to do too much and have complicated the game. We are not at our best when we do that. We are at our best when we play simple, play for each other and everyone takes care of their role.”