Men’s soccer sees fourth largest attendance in nation

Northern Kentucky University expected big things from both the soccer teams and the fans when it opened the new Soccer Complex this season.

The men’s team delivered, hosting both the Great Lakes Valley Conference Championship and the NCAA Regional Final’s this season, and also delivering the first national championship in team history. The fans stepped up as well, boosting the men’s soccer team to fourth in the nation in total attendance this season.

NKU had a total of 7,649 fans attend 15 home games this season, averaging out to a little over 509 fans per game. This mark shattered the attendance of not only last season (2,288), but the previous two seasons combined (4,586). The largest crowd for the Norse was the regional final game, which drew a total attendance of 781 fans.

“It’s such a good experience when you walk out of the changing room and the stands are full,” said Paul Andrews, who was the defensive Most Outstanding Player in the national championship game. “It’s just motivation for the team to do better so we make sure the crowds come back.”

The Norse didn’t disappoint the record crowds. The posted a record of 15-2-1 this season, losing an exhibition game to Indiana University Purdue University Indianapolis in an exhibition game and to Lewis University in the regular season. The one tie was in an exhibition game against the University of Cincinnati in the first ever game hosted at the new facility. The Norse would also add 6-0 post season record at home.

“We always feed off the crowd for the last 10 minutes of the game,“ Andrews said. “Everyone is tired, and the crowd is shouting and getting you up and motivated to keep going and keep fighting to get the win.”

Story by Nick Jones