GRAYSON PRATHER | STAFF REPORTER
In times of struggle, in times of celebration, and in times of disappointment, the Butler’s men’s soccer team has stuck together through the challenges in the 2014 season.
They ended their season with a record of 6-7-5 and finished eighth in the Big East.
Butler head coach Paul Snape said he knows that their record does not necessarily reflect how they have played this year.
“We’re very disappointed right now,” Snape said, “This season’s been a season of so many cliffhangers where we’ve just been right at the top and then we just fell off. It was frustrating because at the end of the day, we’re not advancing because I don’t think we scored enough goals, but we’ve improved our defending immensely this season as well.”
Senior captain Brandon Fricke also expressed his disappointment about this season. He said he understands there was room for capitalization with the amount of chances the Bulldogs had to succeed this season.
“I think that we’re a little disappointed about this season,” Fricke said. “A word that I’ve used to describe it to other people is underwhelming. I think that we had a lot of opportunities for success. We had a lot of opportunities in games to do well and those opportunities slipped.”
Snape said the main thing they need to focus on for next year is balancing their offensive and defensive tendencies.
“Everybody associates us with an attacking style of play and that’s great,” Snape said, “but that’s just words. We’ve got to go out and prove that we’re an attacking team. Teams that win championships have a great balance between attacking and defending.”
The Bulldogs only gave up 19 goals this season, as opposed to the 29 they gave up last season.
Butler also scored 33 goals last season while only producing 18 this year.
Snape said the team is not content with being in the middle of the pack.
“We had some great results this year but we feel we could’ve accomplished a lot more,” Snape said. “We’re not satisfied with just being mediocre. We want to be one of the best in the Big East.”
In order to get to the level of other elite teams in the Big East, junior Jeff Adkins said he and his teammates need to fill their roles and play as a team.
“More guys need to step up,” Adkins said. “I think some guys are trying to figure out where they fit into the team and they really need to figure it out in order for us to be successful. We need to have eleven-plus guys clicking and we were missing some components this year.”
Adkins said the team also needs to put teams away early next season.
“We just need to play soccer,” Adkins said. “Going into next year we need an attitude that we can’t accept ties and we can’t accept losing. We have to go in with the mindset that we’ve just got to put teams away. When we’re up, we’ve got to put them away.”
Coach Snape said he was disappointed in the attendance this year. He wished that were more games that the Butler students would all come out to like the Indiana University game last year.
He also said he knows there is a lot of effort that goes behind advertising and there needs to be creativity that will help more fans come out to the games.
“We’re working very hard on creating a culture of high-performance and we want the crowds,” Snape said. “What comes first—the crowds or the winning? We’ve got to think outside the box; we’ve got to make sure that we’re working and doing things because we’ve got to get the crowd behind us.”