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The Daily Wildcat

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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


Arizona soccer hitting the road in 2012

Annie Marum
Annie Marum / Arizona Daily WIldcat Soccer vs Oregon 2011

This season, the Arizona soccer team will be spending a lot of time on the road, as only seven of its 16 games will be played in Tucson.

Arizona has shown they are capable of winning on the road, as they have already captured two road victories, surpassing the number of road wins for the past three seasons in just four games.

“There are certain things you just don’t have control over, whether it be pre-set schedules for the conference or returns you had to make,” head coach Lisa Oyen said. “However, with having games nearby, like in Flagstaff — which is four hours away — and Tempe — which is an hour and a half away — even though we have to travel more, it’s not extensive travel all over the country. To have those away games near home, it’s more manageable.”

Arizona already completed its longest road trip this season when it traveled to Omaha and defeated Creighton on Sunday.

Still remaining on the Wildcats’ travel schedule are Tempe, California, Washington and Oregon. The upside to the team’s schedule is every other weekend they will be on home turf.

For junior mid-fielder Ana-Maria Montoya, traveling is just another part of being a collegiate soccer player.

“I am used to traveling and being on the go,” Montoya said.

“Personally it’s not a huge factor for me, but obviously playing at home is such an advantage and so much fun. I feel like as a team we cannot allow it to affect us.”

As for missing class and constantly being away from home, each player is held accountable.

“A big part of being a student athlete is learning a lot of time management and scheduling your classes around your soccer schedule,” junior mid-fielder Shannon Heinzler said. “Also not saving everything for the last minute because otherwise you will be cramming the night before and not getting enough sleep. So not only are you not prepared for your test, but you’re not prepared for the game either.”

Homework becomes a priority for these student athletes, so the team also works together to make things easier. As freshmen struggle through general education classes, the juniors and seniors lend a helping hand with classwork.

When the girls are struggling with biology or chemistry they turn to science guru, senior defender Alex Smith, Heinzler said.

Beyond the academic side of things, the team acts as a family unit for one another, from taking pictures to having “Call Me Maybe” sing and dance offs. So, even if they are away from home, they never actually feel homesick.

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