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June 26, 2014

Cup Fever: USA fans gather together to watch key match

TERRE HAUTE — Terre Haute South Vigo and North Vigo high school soccer players enjoyed wings and World Cup action Thursday during the United States versus Germany game at Buffalo Wild Wings.

“It was awesome to see players from the North team come out and watch,” said Aaron Nicoson, South’s boys soccer coach. “We have a rivalry in town, but we came together to support our national team.”

Some 15 South soccer players gathered at the restaurant, Nicoson said, to watch the World Cup match.

“I think watching professionals as a team really helps us learn about teamwork,” said Evan Keiser, a South left back senior. “I really enjoyed the United States moving on.”

 Sitting nearby was Jake Schmidt, a South junior mid-field.

“I think soccer is a growing sport in America,” he said. “The World Cup encourages people to play and brings the [South] team together. Getting together like this helps build team morale and helps us develop a good attitude.”

Also closely watching the game was the Indiana State University women’s soccer team in its training room.

Brittany San Roman, a sophomore at ISU and the team’s goal keeper, said she watched U.S. goalie, Tim Howard, and tried to look at how he reacted to situations and formations.

“The United States team started doing something right and different than in years before,” she said, as she watched the match with her team Thursday. “They didn’t make it very far last [time], but this year is a different story.”

Across the room, Alexandria Rodas, a senior soccer player, said she began her passion for soccer when her dad and grandpa played, which created a “family atmosphere.” Being a center back, Rodas said she learns a lot about the game watching professionals.

“I watch the defense in games like this to figure out how to work as a team,” Rodas said. “I see when they react and what I need to look for.”

Ericka True, Indiana State’s women’s soccer head coach, said she wanted to get the team together to learn from the “best” and so the players could spend time with their teammates.

“I want them to watch the players on the field and discuss different plays,” she said. “Hopefully they’ll pick up a few things and bring it to the field.”

The ISU team watched the heated battle between the United States and Germany. The sighs were audible when Germany scored the game’s only goal shortly after halftime, contrasting with the German players’ celebration on the field.

Despite the loss, Team USA moves on to the knockout stage — the a single-elimination part of the tournament. The top two teams in each group got to move to the next round. Germany topped Group G, otherwise known as the “The Group of Death,” followed by the United States, which has a 1-1-1 record.

The U.S. team will face the top seed out of Group H on Tuesday.

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