Head coach Thomas Ford and the SFU Clan are elevating the bar on expectations after ending a 33-game dropping streak.

Brad McLeod, SFU Athletics SFU Athletics / PNG

SFU Clan elevating the bar on expectations after ending a 33-game dropping streak

Probably the most thrilling factor for followers of the Simon Fraser College Clan soccer workforce after profitable its first sport in 4 years must be how even keeled new coach Thomas Ford is about it.

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Don’t get us fallacious. He hit all of the speaking factors you’d anticipate regarding the Clan’s 54-7 season-opening romp over the Willamette Bearcats on Saturday at Terry Fox Subject, which was this system’s first win since a triumph on Oct. 18, 2014, and ended a 33-game dropping skid.

He lauded his gamers perseverance. He talked about the way it helped get gamers to purchase in to what Ford and his workers wish to do. He’s eager on the excitement that the victory created with alumni and workers.

His predominant take-away was easy, although.

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“We did what we had been speculated to do,” mentioned Ford.

Ford didn’t dance round the truth that Willamette, a Salem, Ore., faculty, is an NCAA Div. III program, which is one degree under SFU’s NCAA Div. II. He didn’t attempt to skip over that the Bearcats have had their struggles, too. They had been winless final season, and had been 5-23 within the three years main into this one.

This was a winnable sport, and SFU received it going away.

Ford is attempting to rebuild the tradition, he’s attempting to create an expectation. He’s not going to overlook an opportunity to attempt to set pointers, and that’s even in a newspaper story.

“This yr is about specializing in the method,” Ford mentioned.

The Clan do take a step up in opponent this week, heading to California to face the Asuza Pacific Cougars. The Cougars obtained some votes within the NCAA Div. II nationwide rankings this previous week, and so they scored 83-7 and 61-Zero wins over the Clan a season in the past.

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Asuza Pacific was 7-Four final season and 9-Three in 2016.

“Our gamers perceive. They see the duty at hand. They know we’re taking part in an excellent program, with a whole lot of good gamers. They’ll be prepared for the problem,” Ford defined.

The win did appear to have interaction the Clan alumni, going off the response on social media. Former SFU offensive lineman Angus Reid, who went on to a stellar profession with the B.C. Lions, has been selling what Ford’s attempting to do atop Burnaby Mountain particularly.

Getting the alumni invested once more is considered one of Ford’s predominant targets.

“We wish to be like a College of Miami or a USC, with the alumni on our sidelines for video games,” he mentioned. “Angus and I had lunch not too long ago and he’s been actually desirous to get again concerned. Guys like him are particular folks. To have the ability to have them come speak to our guys and inform their tales is large.

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“He has been banging the drum for us. He likes what we’re doing. It makes it simple for him.”

SFU misplaced their season opener in Phoenix final yr by a 34-28 rely to the Arizona Christian Firestorm, an NAIA workforce. The NAIA is the American small school loop that SFU performed in previous to transferring to Canada West towards the likes of the UBC Thunderbirds in 2002. They jumped from there to NCAA Div. II in 2010.  They went 5-6 in 2012 beneath coach Dave Johnson, however they’ve now gone 6-45 since.

Ford was employed in January to exchange Kelly Bates, who was let go by SFU after three winless seasons.

A local of Seattle, Ford has coached within the NCAA at Puget Sound (Div. III), Southeastern Oklahoma State (Div. II), and at his alma mater, Linfield (Div. III). Instantly previous to SFU, he had been teaching within the Washington State highschool ranks at Tacoma’s Stadium Excessive.

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