The Maroons head out to the East Coast this weekend for a two-game event—the first at Brandeis College and the second at New York University.
After a promising start to the season, winning seven out of eight games, the Maroons have suffered two losses and two ties in their past four games, including a 1–0 loss to conference foe Emory and a 1–1 tie against another UAA opponent, Rochester. Both games went into double overtime and have resulted in a 0–1–1 record in conference play for the South Siders.
“These are our biggest games of the year,” said second-year keeper Hill Bonin. “If we don’t win both games, we will struggle to have a chance at the post-season. These games make or break our season.”
Despite playing both Brandeis and NYU in a three-day span, the Maroons are placing their focus on their first challenge, as Brandeis is the No. 7 ranked team in the nation for Division III and first in the UAA standings with a 2–0 conference record (11–1–1 overall).
“For as long as I’ve been here, Brandeis has always been among the top teams in the country and it’s always a battle playing them,” said third-year forward Brenton Desai, who has seven goals and one assist in the twelve games this year. “We are hoping that this year the game will be the turning point of our season, since we’re on a four game winless streak right now. We’re basically just waiting for Friday to come out and dominate them at their field.”
Bonin added, “The team is only thinking about Brandeis right now. If we don’t with the rest of our games, our season will be in jeopardy.”
Brandeis leads the series at 14–12–2, but Chicago won their last meeting in 2014 in a 1–0 game.
After Brandeis, the team will turn their attention to NYU before coming home. The Bobcats sit at the bottom of the UAA standings with a 0–2 conference record and a 4–8 overall record. They have a -10 goal differential on the season compared to Chicago’s +2 goal differential.
Despite all of the attention Brandeis is getting, the team is not forgetting about NYU but is simply taking the season one game at a time. “We will worry about NYU after Brandeis,” Bonin said.
NYU leads the all-time series against UChicago at 13–12–3, but once again the Maroons won the most recent matchup with a 2–1 victory in 2014.
On Friday, the Maroons take on the Brandeis Judges at 5:30 p.m., followed by a matchup against the NYU Bobcats on Sunday at 12:30 p.m.