Future Vikings joined the Valparaiso boys soccer team on the field before the current Vikings took on the Michigan City Wolves during the annual Meet the Vikes Night on Wednesday.
“It’s a nice way to give the younger kids a taste of the field and the big time that they can look forward to,” Viking mom Kristen Brandt said. “Plus, the varsity boys love it.”
Brandt organized this year’s event with Brenda Sanjuan, who won one of the player-autographed soccer balls raffled off during half-time.
New this year were the “Future Vikes” t-shirts given to the young players and tossed into the crowd by the varsity boys.
“We asked them to aim for the student section,” Brandt said, but just getting the t-shirts over the fence proved a bit of a challenge for the boys. Next year, they might run a bit closer to the stands before taking their shot.
Valpo freshmen Megan Nelson and Ashley Cavanaugh were in the student section with their friends, all of them wearing Future Vikes tees.
“The games are really entertaining,” gymnast Nelson said, “and it’s fun to cheer on your team with your friends.”
“I’m looking forward to coming to more games this season,” cheerleader Cavanaugh said. “Soccer is really fun to watch, and it’s easier to understand than football.”
Speaking of football, Wolves Head Coach David Harris quickly corrected his use of the term, clarifying that he was talking about soccer.
“We’re short numbers this year,” Harris said before the game, "but even with extended minutes, the guys are still playing the whistles to the end of the game.”
Fans might’ve suspected the game to be an easy win for the Vikings after their JV team won 9-0, but the cool night was met with heated competition o the pitch. Cards of all colors flew from the refs' hands as the intensity overtook the players.
At the half, the Vikings were up 3-2, and the Wolves had scored both of their goals on the corner kick.
The Vikings won with 5 goals to the Wolves’ 2.
Catch the next Wolves game on September 14 when they head to Dyer to take on Illiana Christian. The Vikings will be in Bloomington Friday night for the Hoosier Cup, first facing off against Clarksville’s Providence Pioneers.