The UConn men’s soccer team (3-2-3) will continue conference play Saturday when they host the Memphis Tigers (1-5-2) at Joseph Morrone Stadium at 7 p.m.
UConn was scheduled to play Providence on Wednesday, but the game was postponed due to the weather. The Huskies enter Saturday’s match fresh off a 1-0 loss to conference rival USF at Corbett Soccer Stadium last Saturday.
The Huskies were unable to tie the game Saturday, despite their 4-3 corner kick advantage over the Bulls. Kwame Awuah had two shots on net, but he was unable to capitalize for the Huskies.
“We want it so bad,” said Awuah after the Dartmouth game. “We just need composure in front of the net, and hopefully our strikers can put it in. At the end of the day, it is a results business.”
Memphis is looking for their second win of the season Saturday. They earned their first victory on Wednesday when they defeated Central Arkansas by a final score of 3-1.
The Huskies, on the other hand, have been led by their defense this season. Goalkeeper Scott Levene has done everything possible in net for UConn. He has recorded four shutouts on the year.
“We have three or four people on the backline that are veterans,” said Levene. “There is experience back there. Experience helps bring the pressure down. I do not think there is any pressure on us. We are just going to continue to do what we are doing and the goals will come. I am sure of that.”
However, UConn head coach Ray Reid believes that the offense is improving game by game. He has continued to emphasize that the young group needs time.
“Freddy (Fredrik Jonsson) has been getting better and better the past three games,” Reid said after the URI game. “Him and Abdou (Thiam) have been playing a lot better. It takes time.”
UConn has an all-time 2-0 record against Memphis, dating back to 2013. However, the Huskies are currently riding a two-game losing streak, and are in desperate need of a win. The program has not lost three consecutive games since 2006. Reid has only had a three-game losing streak twice in his 19-year tenure as coach.
Saturday’s game may prove to be a must-win for the Huskies due to the fact they are already 0-1 in conference play.
Eddie Leonard is a staff writer for The Daily Campus, covering UConn men’s soccer. He tweets @EddieLeonard23.