The University of Louisville men’s soccer team will match up against UCLA in the NCAA quarterfinals Saturday.
Coach Ken Lolla led the team to the College Cup Finals last year where the Cards lost to the University of Akron. Lolla’s approach to coaching earned him last year’s National Coach of the Year Award.
“From a soccer standpoint I can’t say there’s anything we do that is entire unique or different,” he said.
Aside from practicing drills and going over game plans, he says he encourages personal development in his players.
“We encourage our guys to read especially certain things from a personal development standpoint and knowing that they grow as people, they’ll certainly grow as soccer players but more importantly when they stop playing soccer they’ll be prepared for success either way,” Lolla said.
Lolla recalls how he developed as a young player into his role as a coach.
“It wasn’t just about watching soccer but it was about my growth and what I understood was the more I grew the more I had to offer others and the better leader I was,” he said.
U of L beat UCLA in this year’s season opener. If the Cardinals win on Saturday, they will play either the University of South Florida or Creighton in the semifinals.
The game begins at 7:00 on Saturday at Cardinal Park.