The Salt Lake Community College soccer club is selling ticket vouchers for Major League Soccer’s Real Salt Lake home games. The vouchers cost $20 each and can be redeemed for any Real Salt Lake home game including the September 17 game where OneRepublic will play a post-game concert.
SLCC students can also show their school spirit and enthusiasm for the soccer club by purchasing a scarf and by attending home games.
“With the support of the school and the students, we could make this a varsity sport,” said Mike Bird, SLCC Student Association president and defender for the Bruins soccer club.
As a club, the soccer team must raise most of its funds and receives a smaller amount of financial support from school fees and does not have any scholarships to recruit players. It also falls under the guidance of the Student Life and Leadership office.
If the team were able to go varsity, it would be able to join a different conference and increase publicity and recognition for SLCC. Such an increase would result in more money for the school. Athletics would take the reins of the team and scholarships could be made available for recruiting purposes. More money would also be allocated from student fees meaning the players would need to do less fundraising.
“The best part of soccer is the atmosphere,” said Cameron Crump, co-captain and midfielder/defender for the soccer club. “It’s the beautiful game.”
Crump said that the games fluid movements are like a dance, and it allows for creativity from all its players.
“The NFL has a handful of players who can be creative,” said Crump. “Everyone else is looking to demolish someone. [Soccer] is more than just hit somebody.”
The SLCC soccer club is recognized nationally at the club level. Coach Enrique Velasquez has created a winning tradition, according to Crump.
“He takes what he has and he makes a quality soccer program,” said Crump. Because the team is not able to offer scholarships, it has to make due with local talent that wants to play.
Bird said that he was amazed at the way that assistant coach and trainer Leo Vega makes up plays and teaches different skills.
Soccer consists of two 45 minute halves, and the clock only stops for halftime, the end of the game and injuries. Teams play with 11 players on the field including one goalie unless the ref hands out a red card for a rules infraction. When that happens, the team plays a man down for the rest of the game.
The SLCC soccer club plays a possession-style game based on the Barcelona model. The basic object behind this strategy is to keep possession of the ball even if the team has to go away from the goal to do so.
Crump says that those who attend SLCC soccer games should expect an attractive style of soccer that is competitive and is “the second highest level of soccer in the state of Utah.”
Vouchers and scarves may be purchased from any soccer team member. Scarves are also available at the SLCC College Store or by contacting Crump at (801)834-0390 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.