Winners of three-straight matches, the Virginia men’s soccer team travels to ACC foe North Carolina for a Friday night match. Kick-off at Fetzer Field in Chapel Hill, N.C., is 7 p.m. Junior midfielder Ross LaBauex recently checked in with VirginiaSports.com to preview the contest.
Question: The team has won three games in a row. Do you feel like you are on a roll?
LaBauex: Yeah, things are clicking pretty well. We started the season 0-2 but no one ever panicked and we knew that if we kept working and got cleaner in front of the net we would be fine. We kept working hard and now have gotten some results, so hopefully we will keep moving in that direction.
Question: How important was it for this young team to grind out a tough 2-1 victory at Virginia Tech in a hostile environment?
LaBauex: It’s good because that is what the ACC is all about. Nothing will ever be handed to us and the games will always be tough. That’s what playoff atmosphere will be, we were up 2-1 and we had to pack it in to win the game.
Question: You and teammate Robby Rogers are this year’s captains. What does that mean to you?
LaBauex: It’s an honor. Virginia is rich in tradition and I want to hold myself to a standard that my teammates can follow. I am out there, giving 110 percent and we all work for each other towards a common goal. That goal is an ACC and NCAA Championship.
Question: What can you tell us about the team’s preparation for North Carolina?
LaBauex: North Carolina will be a completely different game than our last game at Virginia Tech. UNC is known for playing skilled soccer. That being said, we are going to worry about Virginia first, and continue to do what we do well.
Question: What players do you feel have stepped up this year?
LaBauex: I’ve got to say I’m impressed with all the first-years. From top to bottom, I am impressed with their ability to come out here and play and step into a role that’s tough for first-years. I know my first year, I didn’t play much and I was kind of scared. They have conducted themselves in a very professional way and I think there’s a lot of potential with our team as a group. I’m proud of our whole team and the way we’ve been working hard.
Question: How would you describe yourself off the field?
LaBauex: I think what you see on Hoos Talk during the games is what I am like off the field. That portrays me pretty well. I just enjoy myself and I’m blessed to be here.
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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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