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Old Gold & Black

Old Gold & Black

OPINION: Men’s Basketball just won’t back down
Abigail Taylor, Contributing writer • February 27, 2024

Spotlight on Aurednik

Spotlight+on+Aurednik

THE SOPHOMORE IS ONE OF THE TOP PLAYERS IN THE NATION IN NUMBER OF GOALS SCORED—

The men’s soccer team has seen a lot of success so far this season. The play of sophomore forward, Matthew Aurednik, is a big reason for that success. Aurednik is in the top 20 for goals scored in the nation. With the season nearing the Southern Conference tournament, he hopes his own and the team’s success continues.

The OG&B got a chance to turn the spotlight on Aurednik to learn more about him and his play this season.

When did you first start playing soccer?

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When I was four years old.

Did you play any other sports competitively? Why did you choose to soccer over the others?

I played baseball and flag football but nothing competi- tive. I chose soccer because it’s just what came naturally for me and I enjoyed it more than the other sports.

What is a day in the life of a Division I soccer player like? How much work goes into getting ready for each game?

A day in the life of a [Division I] soccer player is pretty busy. We wake up in the morning and have class just like any regular student with the only difference being we have practice right after class, or games late in the afternoon. These days can be pretty rough especially if we’re traveling, because we don’t get back to school until after midnight, and even when we’re home it takes up a good portion of the day and we don’t normally get to homework until 11 p.m. One of the main differences is just having the different stresses of being in season and competing at a high level. You want to represent your school well and get results. The preparation for a game starts the moment we step off the field of the previous game – each practice and weight room session, down to simple things like hydrating and eating right. We take one game at a time and start getting mentally focused days before the game.

What is your pre-game routine if you have one? Music? Habits? Superstitions?

I tape my left wrist and write my favorite Bible verses on it. It’s something I look at throughout the game and it keeps me focused on why I play and whom I play for. I tend to listen to my own music as well, as opposed to what they play in the locker room.

Last year you only scored five goals. This year is a different story. How have you been able to be so successful this season?

Honestly, it’s just a great testament to the level at which our team is. I’m a center forward, so my job is to score goals and to be in positions to score goals so that’s what I do, but I am surrounded by a team who is so talented across the board and gives me the opportunities to score.

Take us into your mind when you are in a game– like the game you played against Upstate, down at first, then fighting your way back. How did you guys fight back?

It was crazy, being down 2 – 0 with 10 minutes left in the game I never expected us to come back and score three goals. We never were out of the fight though and just continued to press them. They thought that they had won already and we took advantage of them as they thought they had done enough.

What is the ceiling for this Wofford team?

I mean we don’t put ceilings on ourselves. We believe that we can go as far as we want. Our focus right now is on winning the regular season conference and tournament so we can go to the NCAA tournament.

Who has been your inspiration throughout your soccer playing days?

My inspiration has definitely been my family as they have attended many of my games and continue to encourage me daily. My main inspiration has to go to my Lord and savior Jesus Christ. The only reason why I play is to bring Him glory and to use my talents to set an example for others.

What are you involved in besides soccer at school?

I’m involved with FCA or Fellowship of Christian Athletes.

What’s your major?

I’m undecided right now.

Favorite soccer player or team?

My favorite player is Steven Gerrard and my favorite team is Liverpool F.C.

White meat or dark meat?

I’ll eat any meat.

Ketchup or mustard?

Ketchup.

Essay or test?

Essay.

The soccer team is home against Furman for their last game of the regular season on Nov. 1 at 7:00 p.m.

— Kyle Hoffman

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