Michael Giallombardo, a goalkeeper hailing from Manalapan, N.J., recently checked in with VirginiaSports.com to talk about the upcoming men’s soccer season. UVa begins preseason practice Wednesday and will travel to West Virginia for an exhibition game on Saturday, Aug. 16, at 7 p.m.
Question: Talk about the upcoming season and what you are looking forward to.
Giallombardo: It’s very exciting. This week we were all issued our gear and we’re looking forward to going out and starting practice. Everyone’s ready for a great year.
Question: How did you spend your summer?
Giallombardo: I went home to New Jersey for the first month and worked at a butcher shop, then I came back for summer sessions two and three, so I was in Charlottesville for the majority of the summer. Between working out, running, playing and school it was a pretty grueling schedule.
Question: What are your team’s goals for the season?
Giallombardo: Our goal is always to perform as best we can and give it our all everyday. Our emphasis is making it a total team effort and every player is there for one another.
Question: How about your personal goals for the 2008 season?
Giallombardo: My personal goal is to be a good role model as an upperclassman and set a good example. I’d like to try and show the younger guys what it means to play soccer at UVa and emphasize the team.
Question: What will you look to get out of the preseason exhibitions? (Aug. 16 at West Virginia; Aug. 23 vs. ODU)
Giallombardo: In the preseason, we’re looking to get all of the kinks out. We have 12 people who are either new to the program (transfers) or freshmen, so we’ll need to get used to each other. It’s not about winning or losing, it’s about getting on the same page and playing our style.
Question: Practice starts Wednesday, what is your favorite part of it?
Giallombardo: Working out with the goalkeepers is my favorite aspect of practice. We’re a close-knit group and have great relationships with each other.
Question: After the exhibitions, the season gets underway Aug. 29 and 30 with the Virginia Soccer Classic. Is it beneficial to start the season in the friendly confines of Klckner Stadium?
Giallombardo: Definitely. Last year we traveled to SMU for the opening weekend of the season and went 1-1. This year, we have a chance to start at home, which is always good. That way, you can keep your schedule, go to classes and get comfortable with your routine.
Question: Describe the atmosphere at Klckner Stadium during a home match.
Giallombardo: There is nothing like it in college soccer. The first time I really realized that was last year when we played Virginia Tech at home in front of almost 8,000 people. There was a penalty kick in double overtime and I made the save. I can remember looking up and everybody in the stadium was on their feet and cheering. It was unreal.
Question: What does it mean to you to play soccer at UVa?
Giallombardo: UVa soccer means a lot to me. I’ve been given a great opportunity to come to an outstanding school and play soccer at an awesome program. It makes the college experience really special.
'Hoos Eager to Take First StepFootball8/29/16At 3:30 p.m. Saturday, against Richmond at Scott Stadium, Bronco Mendenhall makes his debut as Virginia's head football coach.Change Marks New Era at Scott StadiumFootball8/28/16University of Virginia football fans will notice many changes in the team's first season under head coach Bronco Mendenhall.Revamped Cavaliers Ready for New SeasonMen's Soccer8/26/16Newcomers abound for the Virginia men's soccer team, which opens the season Friday night against Coastal Carolina at Klöckner Stadium.
Director of News Content
A 1985 graduate of UVA, White worked at the Richmond Times-Dispatch until July 2009. He was honored six times as the state's Sportswriter of the Year.
No. 17 Virginia Tops No. 21 Coastal Carolina, 2-1
M. Soccer | 8/26/2016
Paddy Foss and Edward Opoku each scored for the Cavaliers in the 2016 season opener.
Jeff White: Revamped 'Hoos Ready for New Season
M. Soccer | 8/26/2016
Newcomers abound for No. 17 Virginia, which opens the season Friday night against No. 21 Coastal ...
UVA Opens Season Friday vs. Coastal Carolina
M. Soccer | 8/25/2016
GameTracker | No. 17 Virginia and No. 21 Coastal Carolina meet for just the second time.
UVA Earns 2-0 Exhibition Win Over Georgetown
M. Soccer | 8/20/2016
Paddy Foss and Edward Opoku scored for Virginia as the Cavaliers wrapped up the preseason slate.
UVA Concludes Preseason Saturday vs. Georgetown
M. Soccer | 8/19/2016
The contest is a matchup of preseason top-20 teams – Georgetown is No. 10, while UVA is No....
Fall Sports Broadcast Schedule Announced
M. Soccer | 8/18/2016
A total of 29 Virginia home events and 14 road contests will air on ACC Network Extra, a...
UVA Picked Third in Coastal in ACC Preseason Poll
M. Soccer | 08/17/2016
Virginia returns 18 letterwinners this season, including seven starters, while welcoming in a top...
Virginia Downs Liberty in Friendly, 4-2
M. Soccer | 08/16/2016
Sergi Nus scored a pair of first-half goals for the Cavaliers, while Wes Wade and Leon Maric...
- Online Stores