Nov. 1, 2000
DURHAM, NC –
The No. 14 Florida State soccer team (12-6-1) enters this year’s ACC tournament with a little more confidence than usual and the feeling that they belong in the ACC for the first time since they joined the conference in 1995. The Seminoles finally feel like they are home after posting the best conference record (2-4-1) in the program’s history and ending winless streaks against North Carolina and Wake Forest this season.
FSU will have the opportunity to continue their success when they face the 15th-ranked Demon Deacons (10-7-1) Thursday, November 2 at 3:00 p.m. in the opening round of the annual ACC soccer championships. The match marks the first time the Seminoles have played a team in the ACC’s that they have already beaten in the regular season.
“This is the first time we’ve come into the tournament with confidence,” said head coach Patrick Baker. “We are excited because we think we can compete with anyone in the conference for the first time ever. On any given day we know we can beat anyone in the ACC and that is a first for us. We used to just show up, play North Carolina and then say our good-byes.”
The Seminoles and Tar Heels had met in the fist round of the ACC tournament four of the past five years and the Seminoles have always returned to Tallahassee after an opening match loss. This year is different. Florida State will face a Demon Deacons team that is highly ranked and finished second in the conference but FSU enters the match knowing they defeated Wake Forest 2-0 at the Seminole Soccer Complex earlier this season.
“Wake Forest is well-coached and they made it to the ACC championship game last season,” said Baker. “They are a very good team and I think we were somewhat fortunate to get the 2-0 win against them in Tallahassee. I also think they have three of the nation’s premiere players in Emily Taggart, Joline Charlton and Stacy Roeck.”
Although the Seminoles have never won an ACC tournament game, Florida State feels good about the opportunities they have at this year’s competition. Coach Baker likes the fact that every team starts at 0-0 at this point of the season and that his team enters the tournament on a very positive note after the best season in the history of the program.
Florida State will return to action Friday November 3 at 6:00 p.m. if they are able to get a victory against the Demon Deacons Thursday afternoon. The Seminoles have also scheduled a 10:00 p.m. gathering at BW3 on Tennessee Street in Tallahassee to watch the live pairings for the upcoming NCAA tournament. Florida State has never received an invitation to the NCAA tournament in the history of the program.