Men’s soccer preps for CAA tourney during break

Back to Article
Back to Article

Men’s soccer preps for CAA tourney during break

Lanre Badmus, Staff Writer

Hang on for a minute...we're trying to find some more stories you might like.

Email This Story

The UNC Wilmington men’s soccer team has had a 2017 season full of ups and downs, as it was nationally-ranked for several weeks and before hitting a speed bump along the way with a losing streak. Now the No. 2 seed in the Colonial Athletic Association tournament, the Seahawks have the chance to make a run for glory and an automatic NCAA tournament bid.

The Seahawks (10-6, 5-3 CAA) were ranked as high as 15th in the country, but also battled through a difficult four-game losing streak near the end before a 1-0 home win over Northeastern snapped that streak last weekend. That victory also gave UNCW a bye to the tournament semifinals, where it will face either College of Charleston or Elon in Harrisonburg, Virginia.

UNCW will be making its sixth-consecutive conference tournament appearance and is looking to head to the NCAA tournament for the first time since 2014. UNCW coach Aidan Heaney spoke of the importance of the win over Northeastern and subsequent top-two finish as a confidence booster for the squad heading into the tournament.

“It’s just a confidence booster for us after having a tough stretch of games,” Heaney said. “The fact that we’ve ended up second in the league shows the body of the work we’ve done before that period of games … It’s definitely important for the morale of the group to give them the reinforcement that what we’re doing is working.”

Having achieved the set goal of a top-three conference finish, Heaney said he believes the sky is the limit for his team. The goal now is to win the tournament and become conference champions.

The team suffered a late-season setback, but the players have moved past that and believe they are the most talented team in the CAA. Now with a two-week break to prepare as well as a renewed sense of team spirit and optimism, the Seahawks players are confident and ready for whatever the tournament will throw at them.

“It’s huge that we got a bye. I think that was one of our main goals,” said sophomore midfielder Phillip Goodrum, who leads UNCW with seven regular-season goals. “Getting this 12-day break is huge when our opponents won’t be as fresh as we will be.”

Goodrum said there was some feeling of unfinished business with certain teams.

“Charleston left a sour taste in our mouth last time when they came from behind to beat us [a 2-1 home loss for UNCW last month], so it would be great to see them again,” Goodrum said.

UNCW will face the winner of the CAA quarterfinal between College of Charleston and Elon in the semifinals on Nov. 10.

Staff Writer Lanre Badmus can be found on Twitter @LonnyBadmon . Any tips or suggestions should be forwarded via email to For video updates from The Seahawk, subscribe to our YouTube channel.