For us this is the best time of the year. This is our chance to test ourselves once again in front of our opponents. It's our chance to show our strengths, to show the reason why we belong here and the opportunity to show how bad we want to win. It's the time when the team becomes more united, where travel experiences become more memorable and where Blue vs. Gold competitions become a great opportunity to improve (and by the way blue is coming back!).
Being a foreigner and representing my country on this team is something that makes me feel proud. Each day I try to bring something special to the team and they definitely give me something special to me in return. The excitement in each practice, the passion that exists in UT women's soccer and the commitment that the players and coaches have towards the team are features that at the end of the day become a part of your personal characteristics.
We had our first league matches last weekend and came away with two wins on the road. This gave us the feeling of starting the conference in a good way, but at the same time it gave us the feeling that we need to become better each day. As Coach Evans said, "The MAC season is not a sprint, it's a marathon" and how you stay focused over the next two months of competition is the real challenge. You can't be excited too early and then fall too fast. Having been picked to finish first puts a little more pressure on our side, but we embrace it. It becomes another motive to win and one more reason to show what the UT women's soccer team is really about.
Natalia Gaitan is a junior defender on the women's soccer team and is majoring in pre-business.
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