Sunday, December 14, 2008

College Cup Final Liveblog

Live from Frisco, Texas, it's the final of the NCAA Men's soccer championship, Maryland versus North Carolina. I'm not sure what it says that college soccer's marquee event follows bull riding on the Worldwide Leader, but such is the world we live in.

Maryland (22-3-0) found their way to the final by beating St. John's, 1-0, with a free-kick goal from Graham Zusi in Overtime. Carolina (15-7-1) earned their berth by knocking off the #1 seed, Wake Forest, in another 1-0 game.

So, what are the chances this one ends with only one goal? Or even goes to PK's?

Guess we'll find out.

One way or another, the ACC is repeating as Champs this year, after Wake won it last year.

PREGAME: We get to see the goals from Friday night's Semi's. It's Harkes and JPC on the mic. I'm sure Harkesy will give us plenty of ammo today. (and f**k Sheffield Wednesday)

1''" Maryland in white tops, red shorts, white socks. Carolina in their lame ass baby blues. Kick-off for Carolina goes almost straight out of touch.

I'm switching to Countdown Clock-mode. Stupid, sexy college soccer.

42": A sunny say in Texas, which might explain why the stadium is practically empty. That or b/c it's college soccer.

41": Maryland's stud GK is only a freshman. The chances he stays four years? Rafa Benitez says there is no chance.

38": The referee's shirt could make one of our kit reviews. Good god, I just got eye-raped. Honestly, possession is back and forth. And I'm in for 90 minutes? UGH.

36": Carolina has a crack at goal, but it's wide left.

35": Maryland plays with the ball in the box (huh-huh), and lofts a ball back-post, but it's claimed by the 'keeper.

34": Yellow card for Carolina for a handball in the midfield. This looks a lot like my recreational men's final two weeks ago.

30": The game is open, but not super tight. A good bit of hoofing it up the field. Worst. Liveblog. Ever.

27": A scrum in the Maryland box after a Carolina corner. But no goal. Dirk Kuyt approves.

25": Maryland are showing signs of culture in the Carolina box, but nothing deadly. The Carolina keeper is down and the clock stops. Really.

Carolina GK is up, but now MD's semi-final goal-scorer is getting a new tape job.

24": For the third time out of what will likely be 43 times, JP mentions that if Carolina wins, it will be the first time in soccer that a school has won championships the same year in the same sport.

23": Carolina's upfield passing is more the 'Hoof and Hope' type.

21": A MD corner (the 2nd consecutive) almost sneaks in backpost, but it's snuffed out for another corner. Maryland takes a crack from outside the box, but it's too crowded.

18": TIME-OUT!! MD look the stronger of the two teams, but they're not exactly outclassing UNC.

adidas would like to remind you that 'Impossible is Nothing'.

18": MARYLAND GOAL. But, it's offsides. Came from a nice one-two, then a thru-ball into the box. That's how you come out of a time-out!

15": The 'crowd' tries to get a chant going, but it lasts about 10 seconds. Carolina then makes a mess of a routine clearance, but Maryland can't capitalize as the GK fumbles and UNC eventually clears.

13": Harkes really hasn't said anything dumb. Think he saves it for the USMNT broadcasts?

12": MD's Zeus plays Hall through, but he can't quite make the stretch properly in the box. Carolina survives. I feel a Terp goal coming.


10": Maryland is certainly fond of playing the ball up field to heads... but they consistantly win them, so I suppose it works. Maryland shoots from 25 out, it flashes wide.

8": Harkes isn't a big fan of the sub rule. Way to take a stance, John.

8": Zeus takes a free kick from 35 yards out. GK can only fist it as that ball had some pace on it.

4": The Terps have had the lion's share of dangerous possession this half. Interestingly, UNC has fouled 8 times, MD only once.

Yes, this game SUCKS. And honestly, so does my liveblog. But....

HALFTIME: They're having on-field introductions with all sorts of recognizable names. They introduce a coach of the '50th Anniversary' team and somebody off-camera says "WHO?!"

45": AND WE'RE BACK!
And the clock countdowns from 45 AGAIN. Ugh, this is killing me.

43": Carolina dribbles the ball into the MD box but flatly refuses to shoot.

40": Maryland is wearing Under Armor uniforms, which isn't accidental. The guy who founded the company is a former Maryland football player (American version).

37": Maryland looks sloppier. Unfortunately, this game isn't getting any better. I'd be interested to know how much time the ball has spent in the air, at a level of 20 feet or above.

27": Sorry, had to fix the HTML. Shockingly, I missed NOTHING.

25": I think this game is going to PK's. Granted, there's 25 minutes left, plus OT, but.. That said, Carolina is giving MD problems right now.

24": And on cue, Zeus finishes for Maryland from inside the box. The ball comes in from the right, Hall has his first-time shot saved and Zeus puts the rebound in. 1-0 Maryland.
How will Carolina respond?

21": TIMEOUT!!

Apparently, I've been misspelling Zusi. Not like the God. Oh well.

20": For you kids at home, the definition of a pro is 'being responsible'. So says Papa Harkes. Carolina's Callahan dribbles into the box, but a kick-save keeps Maryland ahead. UNC is coming.

16": Back and forth we go, knocking the ball up into the air. Volleyball-esque.

12": Maryland isn't even pretending to be interested in possession. Each time they get the ball, they settle and knock it up the pitch.

11": Maryland CK McMath is down. And there's a scrum around a UNC player. Looks like he just got clipped.

McMath is up. Carolina's #20, Wiliams, got a yellow for his troubles.

7": Carolina is trying to add pressure and Maryland is coping.

So, if MD hangs on, will they be burning couches on Route 1 tonight? Methinks it's unlikely.

4": Carolina's #8 is jawing at the ref and actually just touched him in an aggressive manner. How Chelsea-esque of him.

FINAL: Maryland wins, giving it's seniors a 2nd championship. Soak it in, Terp fans, because it's going to be a long basketball season.

37 comments:

ü75 said...

I can't wait for the first timeout.

Lingering Bursitis said...

gimme lineups! I need to figure out which team to support solely based on the names of the players involved.

ü75 said...

I don't think that there is any better argument for home-site based Final Four than seeing about 2000 people in the stands for the semis in the 20K seater in Frisco.

Some quick websearching shows that Wake Forest students would have the shortest drive--1100 miles. UNC-1185; UMD-1340; SJU-1550. No wonder hardly anyone is there.

The NY Kid said...

Since my dad was a Johnnie, I am obligated to root against Maryland.

But Graham Zusi is a great name.

The Fan's Attic said...

i woke up this morning to about 3 inches of snow...it doesn't snow very often here...so...I am in complete "snowed in" mode...this will be a good day.

Andrew said...

Only 230 comments to go . . .

Anyone else read the 'Villa to Gunners' rumor in the Daily Mail?

ü75 said...

@LB-Starting lineups. Remember, because of liberal substitution laws, these guys can go out and come back in.

UNC

Brooks Haggerty (GK)
Zach Lloyd
Michael Callahan
Garry Lewis
Eddie Ababio
Billy Schuler
Ryan Adeleye
Jordan Graye
Cameron Brown
Sheanon Williams
Brian Shriver

UMD
Zac MacMath (GK)
Omar Gonzalez
Doug Rodkey
Rich Costanzo
Casey Townsend
Jasin Herrick
Graham Zusi
Michael Marchiano
Jeremy Hall
AJ Delagarza
Rodney Wallace

ü75 said...

Interesting. UNC had a sub .500 record in the ACC. Reminds me of Clemson in 1987 when the went 1-5-1(WLT-the American system) in league and won the National Championship. They went like 15-0-0 outside of league and were the last team into the tournament.

Mike Georger said...

Fuck Carolina. Fuck Maryland too. A Sum of All Fears situation would be stellar.

Lingering Bursitis said...

I'm going with UNC just because of the name "Eddie Ababio". That is a stellar name. Ababio.

Mike Georger said...

Does Maryland recruit convicted felons for their soccer team? Or is that strictly a basketball thing?

ü75 said...

See, I kind of like Zac MacMath.

Alright, what I really need more than anything today is a Dolphins win, coupled with (more) losses my the Jets and Pats. The way results have been going (SF getting better, Bills sucking, Oakland still has a team?), I could be looking at 0 for 3.

ü75 said...

Haggerty is down. Got hit in the back of the head. Apparently had a concussion earlier in the season.

ü75 said...

Yes, Sven. The ref's shirt is straight out of 1994.

ü75 said...

Bills suck.

ü75 said...

TV timeout! Bathroom break.

ü75 said...

Give Harkes time. It looks kind of cold. He'll warm up eventually.

ü75 said...

Sorry, Sven.

This sucks (the game, not your liveblog).

The NY Kid said...

Hey, were you guys aware that no university has ever had its Men's and Women's soccer teams win national championships in the same year?

ü75 said...

Is Pizza Hut Park still not finished? There looks to be some construction going on behind the video screen.

ü75 said...

Woo! Some no-name Fin scores a TD. And Buffalo is back in the game as well.

ü75 said...

Here comes the countdown.

ü75 said...

When I say no-name, I mean it. Joey Haynos, a rookie out of UMD, scores on his first ever NFL catch.

ü75 said...

TD Bills! Come on Playoffs!

The NY Kid said...

the announcer absolutely butchered some of the names on that College Cup anniversary team.

I mean, he called him Brad Fra-dell. C'mon now.

Andrew said...

The NYT Mag Idea issue has a blurb on how a keeper standing still is more likely to block a shot than by diving to the left or right.

threadjack unintended.

Precious Roy said...

If this were a Kige Ramsey liveblog:

12:20 Kick.

1:05 Halftime.

ü75 said...

Oh man, I just backed up to watch that 50th anny team thing. The announcer got over half the names wrong. Really, the only two he got right (that I recognized) were Harkes and Myernick. What a tool.

ü75 said...

@Andrew-
Is there a link?

Precious Roy said...

Sven... check the UF email. We're trying to get the HTML sorted.

Andrew said...

Goalkeeper Science

It still won't help England.

ü75 said...

GOAL!

ü75 said...

@Andrew-
While that may be sound if the PK taker does not change his style, a flux of keepers just standing there would lead to all shots going to the corners. I always varies my style based on a feeling. Sometimes I would choose, and sometimes I would react.

Mike Georger said...

Jesus? Do I look Puerto Rican to you mother fucker?

ü75 said...

MacMath needs to get his Dida-inspired ass up.

Andrew said...

@ u75: Agree. It all comes down to the taker. Like Lehmann against the Argies in 06 with the crib sheet, I think basic preparation would stop PKs more than just merely standing there.

I would like to see this in practice.

ü75 said...

Congrats, Sven and TLL.