Robby Rogers, a junior defender from Fairfax, Va., recently checked in with VirginiaSports.com to talk about the men’s soccer season. UVa hits the road for a Friday night match at George Mason before returning to Klckner Stadium to host Hofstra Sunday at 7 p.m.
Question: What is the feeling at practice this week headed into the two matches against George Mason and Hofstra?
Rogers: Last weekend is already in the past, we’re not going to forget about it but we kind of have to move on and focus on our next two opponents. We feel like we were a little bit unlucky last weekend, and we had opportunities to win both of our games in the tournament. We are confident in what we can do as a team and are looking forward to our next two games.
Question: You were a freshman in 2005 and played two years then took a year off away from UVa. How does it feel to be back?
Rogers: I never thought that I would put on a Virginia jersey again. Once I left at the end of the 2006 season I did not think I would be back. I went home (Fairfax, Va.) and I ended up getting an internship with DC United and was looking to transfer. But as time went on, nothing added up to UVa. So I decided to challenge myself and come back and see what I could accomplish. Honestly I’m privileged. There have been so many great players to come through this program and I am just happy to be back. I want to be one of those players that can carry on the great tradition of Virginia soccer.
Question: Who or what inspires you?
Rogers: My family. My parents and my sisters. My mom’s work ethic and my father’s consistency.
Question: If you could trade places with one student-athlete at UVa for a day, who would you choose?
Rogers: Well he’s not here anymore, but Sean Singletary. I love basketball.
Question: If you were writing your own bio, how would you describe your game?
Rogers: Possessive. I’d like to think that I play with a lot of passion and a little bit of skill (laughs).
Question: What has been your proudest athletic moment?
Rogers: I think I’d have to say the first time I represented my country for the Under-20 National Team. We played against Mexico in Fort Lauderdale, Fla.
Question: What is the hardest part about playing soccer?
Rogers: The hardest part of soccer is consistency and determination. It’s 90 minutes every game and the hardest part is the focus that you have to have. You can dominate a team all game long, but one slip up in that 90-minute span and you can be down 1-0. So just the focus that you have to bring day in and day out is the hardest part.
Question: You were recently selected as a team captain, along with Ross LaBauex. How does that feel?
Rogers: If you go down the line of people that have been captains at this school, it is just an honor and a privilege to be in that group and to be able to lead this team.
Question: What is your favorite professional team?
Rogers: DC United.
Question: What was your first soccer memory?
Rogers: Playing soccer with my sister is my first soccer memory. I have two older sisters that played soccer and I used to go to their games.
Question: What do you do to prepare for a game?
Rogers: I try to relax and not get too worked up. I like to stay loose and have fun up until right before we walk up to the field. When we walk up to the field, that’s when I start to really get focused.
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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.
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