After eight years in the darkness, the Soccer Hoosiers have returned to the bright lights of the Final Four, the NCAA's College Cup, after defeating defending NCAA champion North Carolina 1-0 last Friday.
IU's Soccer Hoosiers face Creighton in NCAA College Cup 2nd Semifinal tonight at 7:30 p.m. on ESPNU for record 18th College Cup appearance; Georgetown plays Maryland in opener at 5 p.m., DirecTV Channel 208
Watch online here via WatchESPN:
The final is Sunday at 2 p.m. and also on ESPNU
Space limitations here prevent me from naming all my friends who were players on IU's 7-time NCAA Soccer champions, whose many exploits & comebacks at Armstrong Stadium under coach Jerry Yeagley I recall like they were yesterday, happily, often in the company of my friend Laura Seitz from Pittsburgh, wearing her red Adidas IU swimming warm-up jacket that always made my charming friend's very good looks just pop-out a little bit more.
Well, okay, I'll name two, IU soccer phenoms Mike Hylla and Dave Boncek, of St. Louis, part of IU's much-vaunted St. Louis pipeline, who were twice members of an IU NCAA champion team in 1982 and '83, and the runner-up team in '84.
Dave and Mike lived in the same apt. complex as me, Dunhill Apartments, directly west from Memorial Stadium, and not surprisingly, like all IU soccer players, or at least the vast majority of them that I knew, were personable and funny.
Those qualities always made rooting for them very easy on those rare times when we were actually trailing in a close game.
Since they had a very particular talent for showing some crazy soccer skills, they were very adept at always kicking the ball around near the pool -basically, just below my apt. and what our living room window opened up to- while simultaneously noticing, along with me- who among the bevvy of beautiful IU coeds lying around the pool still retained their spring break tans.
Yes, that a was a very nice place to live!
(I think the daughter of IU team doctor, Dr. Brad Bomba lived there as well, if I recall.
Dr. Bomba was an All-American end when he was at IU in the mid-1950's.)
If YouTube has existed then, I would've definitely uploaded video of their gravity-defying dexterity with a soccer ball, as they seemingly could keep soccer balls in the air forever.
None of those soccer triumphs were more memorable or deserved than the 1982 NCAA eight-overtime title game victory over Duke, which I witnessed in person over Christmas break at Ft. Lauderdale's Lockhart Stadium, in what remains THE longest game in the history of college soccer.
Afterwards, jubilant Hoosier players, coaches, families and supporters -like me- partied all-night in the hallways in the team's hotel, the Ft. Lauderdale Sheraton Yankee Trader.
It was one of the happiest days of my time in Bloomington -success!!!
IU soccer merchandise at the official online store: