It will do little heal the sorrow of Michigan faithful after the Wolverines' epic football loss to Appalachian State at the Big House last Saturday, but the Wolverine men's soccer team made a statement last weekend.
Led by a pair of exciting sophomores Mauro Fuzettiand Peri Marosevic, Michigan is making a case for itself as one of this year's darkhorses in the Division I men's ranks.
Fuzetti scored the first of two goals just 85 seconds into the Wolverines' 3-0 win over Rutgers last Friday. Marosevic had the third goal against the Scarlet Knights and scored the only goal in a 1-0 victory over Hofstra on Sunday.
Fuzetti, a Houston product, spent the summer playing with the Michigan Bucks, for whom he scored in the dramatic shootout that decided the 2007 PDL championship in favor of the Laredo Heat. (UM co-captains Michael Holody and Alex Morisset both played the entire 120 minutes in the PDL final.)
Marosevic, a former U.S. U-17 resident from Rockford, Ill, spent the offseason playing for the U.S. U-18 national team. He attracted interest from German club Eintracht Frankfurt after a standout performance for the U-18s at a tournament in Lisbon in June. He also played for the USA the Pan-American Games.
Just as impressive as Fuzetti and Marosevic was the defense, led by goalie Patrick Sperry, who recorded shutouts over Rutgers, one of the hottest teams in the Big East at the end of last season, and defending CAA champion Hofstra -- both 2006 NCAA Division I tournament teams.
"This is a team with maturity now that understands you want to start every season like this," Michigan coach Steve Burns said. "Next is to keep a level head and continue to improve. I think it takes a lot of pressure off the guys as we look forward to this next weekend where we play three time zones away Cal Northridge and Cal Fullerton."
Michigan is coming off a 7-10-4 season that began with three losses in its first four games.