With the Washington men’s soccer team having accomplished its stated goal of winning the Pac-12 championship, it now will look to make an elusive long run in the NCAA tournament.
The Huskies (15-3-0), the No. 6 overall seed in the tournament, got a bye in the first round and will play host to the winner between Yale and Boston College. The game will be Sunday at Husky Soccer Stadium at 5 p.m.
“We have silverware (Pac-12 trophy) in the cabinet and now it’s time to get greedy,” said UW coach Jamie Clark.
Seattle University (14-3-4), with an unbeaten streak of 14 games that is the second longest in the nation, travels to Loyola Marymount for an opening-round match, with the winner playing at Stanford on Sunday.
The Huskies were No. 1 in the nation for several weeks until two late-season defeats and are one of the tournament’s top contenders. To make the long run they covet, they will have to change their recent history.
Washington has lost at home in the first round the past two seasons, and has not advanced past the second round since 2014.
Blake Bodily has 10 goals to lead UW. He is the team’s first double-digit goal scorer since Brent Richards scored 10 in 2011.
Seattle U, winner of the Western Athletic Conference regular season and tournament titles, is in the NCAA tournament for the fourth time in seven years. The Redhawks have won their tournament opener the past three times, including at UW in 2017.
There was a chance that Seattle U could be the host for a first-round game, then play at UW if it won. Instead, the teams would have to reach the Final Four to meet. That is just fine with Seattle U coach Peter Fewing.
“I would rather stay away from UW,” Fewing said. “I would rather we both end up in the Final Four together. That would be awesome. Jamie (Clark) and I were texting this morning and we both like our draws a lot. They’ve earned the right to host and we’ve got to take care of business on the road.”
Declan McGlynn has led the Seattle U offense with 10 goals and six assists. Defender Nkosi Burgess, the WAC defensive player of the year, has helped the Redhawks record 10 shutouts this year.