HIALEAH, FL – Both ASA College-Miami’s soccer programs will be hitting the road this weekend, with each team traveling to play a pair of games through the weekend.
ASA Miami’s men will head to Daytona Beach, Florida for the second straight weekend – having made the 262-mile trip this past weekend to take on Northeast Community College – and play two games on the campus of Daytona State College.
It’s a bit of a regional round-robin, with Daytona State hosting ASA Miami, Andrew College (Cuthbert, Ga.) and Georgia Military College (Milledgeville, Ga.) for the two-day, four-game set.
The Silver Storm (0-1) will be thrown into the fire as soon as they step off the bus, having to take on No. 15 ranked Georgia Military College (3-0-1) Saturday at 4:30 p.m.
ASA Miami men’s soccer coach J.C. Gonzalez said that his familiarity with GMC could help during this weekend’s game.
“We played [GMC] last year and we know they are going to be a tough team to play,” Gonzalez said of the matchup against the Bulldogs. “I got a pretty good scouting report on them – we know their style of play…and we know our style of play matches up well against them. We just have to be mindful of how powerful of they are.”
After battling with GMC Saturday, Gonzalez’s team will come back and take on Andrew College (1-2) Sunday at 11 a.m.
It is a quick turnaround for the Silver Storm, and it’s something that Gonzalez is cautious about heading into the weekend.
“It is difficult to play back to back no matter what sport you’re playing,” Gonzalez said. “Especially when you’re going from playing the No. 15 team in the nation to – and no disrespect to Andrew College because we respect every opponent – playing a team that’s not of the same caliber, it’s mentally difficult, too.”
“We’ll be mentally and physically drained from the GMC game, but I’m confident that our depth will be able to overcome it and allow us to fare well against Andrew College,” Gonzalez added.
While the men take care of business in Central Florida, ASA Miami’s women will be heading to the Peach State this weekend for its two-game, weekend set against a pair of schools it has never played before.
The undefeated Lady Storm (5-0) will travel nearly 1,200 miles round trip with the hopes of extending their program-record winning streak – beginning with a ride to Thomasville, Georgia to take on Thomas University (1-1-1) Saturday at 4:30 p.m.
ASA’s women, fresh off a 4-0 home victory over Florida Memorial University, rank in the top five in NJCAA Division-I in goals scored (29) and have one of the country’s top players in freshman Valentina Restrepo.
Still, ASA Miami women’s soccer head coach David Luna knows that playing against four-year schools is always a tough task.
“We play as many four-year schools as possible so that our girls get the experience and exposure. Also, it’s a way for us to continue that momentum because we play in the toughest division in the country. We need as much competition as possible,” Luna said.
After taking on the Night Hawks in Thomasville, the Lady Silver Storm will travel to Douglas, Georgia for a Monday morning showdown with South Georgia State College (1-2-1) set for 10 a.m.
If ASA’s women make it through the weekend keeping its record blemish-free, there’s a strong possibility that the Lady Silver Storm could find themselves in the new composite NJCAA rankings – something that hasn’t happened in ASA Miami history.
Still, Luna isn’t focused on rankings or records, he just wants his girls to focus on each game as it comes along.
“It’s all about keeping that standard high. Making sure that we’re doing everything – training, practicing, playing – at that standard that we’re expecting and not falling short,” Luna said. “5-0 is nice, but we’re working for six.”