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Inside the head; Nick Vyncke is on his guard

October 1, 2010

This past summer, the world was unified through soccer and the World Cup. Even with ESPN pushing it as hard as they could, America was only half interested.

However, those who  watched it, you might remember a goal being scored in the USA versus England game where an easy shot went off the hands of the English goalie and went in for a goal; the lone American goal. The game ended in a tie and the English goalie is still hearing it from disgruntled fans.

Goalies in soccer are much like the quarterbacks in football. They get a lot of the glory when they make a save and win, but also all the shame when they give up an easy goal and lose.

Junior goalie Nick Vyncke has played goalie since he was five years old and knows firsthand the huge impacts goalies have.

“If you stop a penalty kick, free kick, or any just good shot, it really brings the whole team up,” said Vyncke “After a big save your team really gets pumped up.”

However, Vyncke says the same is true when you miss a save. “It really hurts your momentum and the other team gets hyped,” said Vyncke.

This season, Vyncke and the Scots are treating momentum swings differently this year than in years past.

“Momentum is very important in soccer, last year we went down 2-0 in a game and gave up. This year we have come back from being down 2-0 and won so we believe we can do it,” said Vyncke.

Teams never want to get down 2-0 and there are certain strategies in a game a goalie can do to keep the ball from ever reaching the net. 

“When people are working hard up top and making smart decisions it makes my job a lot easier, and I would love to have it on that end of the field. But don’t get me wrong, I still want to make the big save,” said Vyncke.

“Keeping everyone in front of you organized is always a constant battle; it’s hard to maintain people when they want to make something happen even though you know they should be doing something different.”

The most important players for the goalie are the three defenders.

They are so important because the goalie can talk to them and help position them so they have the best chance of stopping an advance. The better they flow with each other and the rest of the team the better we play. To be most effective they must listen to the goalie and need to make sure they need to stay back some.

When the communication is low or when the defenders do not listen, it makes it harder on a goalie.

“When people don’t listen even though I see the whole field and when people go half hard to their position, it really makes my job hard. I need them working hard while listening otherwise it gets frustrating,” said Vyncke.

For the goalie himself there is one thing that you have to be doing all game; focusing. “Focus is most important, because when the ball is not down on your half of the field and you’re not thinking about it you can fall asleep during the game. And when you’re not paying attention, you can sometimes give up very easy and embarrassing goals that could end up costing your team,” said Vyncke.

If there is one thing most people don’t know about goalies is about how rough it is.

“You definitely get knocked a little, like getting kicked when on the ground and stuff, so every day you get a new bruise,” said Vyncke.

If Vyncke could change one thing, it would be how much support the team gets.

“We want to get people to the game, when fans are there it helps pump us up,” said Vyncke. “We have that swag now and we will play with heart and swag to make it a great experience for the fans.”

Co-Sports Editor

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