Syracuse returns home looking to put together winning streak in playoff push

Syracuse returns home looking to put together winning streak in playoff push

September 17, 2020 siyigpggwzmw 0

first_imgThe crowd was buzzing the last time Syracuse played at SU Soccer Stadium. The Orange defeated Connecticut for the first time ever to open Big East play with a win.After going 1-1-1 in a stretch of three road games, SU returns home this weekend with a chance to assert itself as a contender in the conference. And the Orange players are looking forward to continuing their playoff push in front of their home crowd.“It definitely brings more energy just because we have so many fans and it’s a much better atmosphere,” sophomore Alexis Koval said.Syracuse (5-4-2, 2-1-1 Big East) is currently second in the American division of the Big East conference with six games remaining on the schedule. After playing eight out of its first 11 games on the road, SU will play four of the final six games at home. The Orange begins a three-game home stretch against Seton Hall on Friday at 7 p.m.Attendance has increased this year at home for the Orange due to a concerted effort by the players to encourage more people to come watch the games.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textA crowd of 453 watched this year’s home opener against Albany compared to 307 for last year’s first home game against Big East opponent Providence.Senior forward Jenna Rickan has noticed the increased turnout for the games.“We’ve done a really good job of telling people to come and all of our hard work is being paid off,” she said. “People are seeing us more and it’s just a lot better to have a crowd behind you.”The Orange will need to capitalize on its home-field advantage to remain in the hunt to win the Big East this year. The team is aware it controls its postseason destiny.“With four home games we want to go 4-0 at home; that’s our goal,” SU head coach Phil Wheddon. “The other results are out of our control.“When we go away to Marquette and away to USF, that’s a really tough road trip, but we’ve got to take care of the business at home.”As a senior, Rickan knows the importance of focus in the final stretch of the season. She said SU is worried about its own game plan more than it is each opponent. The team has struggled to finish goals this year.Wheddon is making an effort to simulate a game environment in practice, in hopes that success in drills will translate into results.Rickan remains positive the team will improve down the stretch.“We know it will come, we’re just going to peak at the right time,” she said.While the Orange is in a strong position to win the division and return to the conference tournament, Koval said the team is taking it one game at a time.The team will try to feed off its home crowd in the next three games and use it as a launching pad for the final phase of the season.“You get out of your own bed, you’re eating the foods you like to eat, so being at home for us is something that allows us to get back into a routine,” Wheddon said. “It’s a huge boost for us.” Comments Published on September 27, 2012 at 1:04 am Contact Jack: [email protected] Facebook Twitter Google+last_img

 

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