Week 4 saw our Gladiators playing different games, facing important challenges. On Monday our Men’s 5on5 Soccer and Basketball teams played respectively against Link Campus in the University of Rome Championship and against Lokomotiv Prenestino in the UISP Tournament. Wednesday was a busy night for both our Men’s Soccer team playing against College Life and Basketball team playing against Unicamillus. On Thursday, our COED Volleyball took the field against Icaro team in the Oroverde Tournament. But let’s see in detail what our Gladiators went through.
Men’s 5on5 Soccer: LCU vs JCU: 8-1
This was the second game of the semester for our Men’s 5on5 team and they faced Link Campus University, one of our most important rivals in the University of Rome Championship.
Our Gladiators started the game in a very good way but seemed to be losing some focus from the end of the first set, which resulted 2-0.
Our guys still need to create a cohesive team and work as one; in fact, they could not make it against their opponents, unfortunately.
Coach Manuel Franceschi commented:
First half we were losing by 2 goals, and we played way better than last time as the new players have already improved and could give a better contribution to the team. Defending phases got definitely better while we still need to improve a lot on the offending phases, which resulted to be harder especially during the last minutes of the game. I saw many improvements: we made it to challenge multiple times the opponents who, however, were definitely better than us. I’m very happy about the Goalkeeper who, as usual, performs very well and pushes the other players to always do better. I expect many improvements but I believe in this team. I was very happy this time as they made less mistakes than the first game.
The second half was indeed decisive and LCU made it to 8-1. Captain Abdul added:
LCU is a good team but we improved a lot and we played better than last time. We made some mistakes, all of us, but I believe we’re on the good way to play better and better. As they say, ‘You can’t accomplish anything without failing first‘
Well said Abdul! Keep up the good work you’re doing and we’re sure in the next games you’re going to show your value!
MVP – Erick Valencia
SAP vs JCU | Monday, February 14 | 9:00pm | Sapienza Sport
Basketball UISP: LKM vs JCU, landslide victory 30-65
UISP Tournament is always a challenge for our Gladiators as they compete against very diverse teams, which sometimes are way more experienced than our young players.
However, Coach Jose Cano is doing a great job with our guys in creating a cohesive team almost from scratch, as we have many new players this semester. Indeed, the results of the first game of the semester are self-explanatory:
Even though the conditions of the game were pretty adverse, as our team is not used to playing at external courts, and the weather was cold and wet on Monday night, the team showed their value against the opponents Lokomotiv Prenestino, and brought an important first victory back home.
Coach Jose left us with a great feedback:
It was a good game in the first quarter, after that our guys figured out what we needed to do, stayed focused and never looked back while we went on to win by 35… but above all else they had fun which is most important. It was definitely a good team effort, very well balanced. I’m looking forward to the harder challenge next game and how we respond.
We are very proud of our Basketball team who’s showing the Gladiators’ values right from the beginning of the season.
Captain Noam said:
Great team basketball, lots of effort from the new players. Now we need to focus on future games to maintain the winning mindset I am trying to apply in this team.
MVP – the entire team working as one
Men’s Soccer: COL vs JCU: 3-1
Wednesday was an important night for our Men’s Soccer team who took the field for the first time this semester. The game against College Life was really a good one; sport values, fair play, and respect for rules were the real winners. We have seen the opponents playing as a very well organized, trained and experienced team. After their first goal, our Gladiators though reacted well but could not make it to the first half, losing 2-1.
The second half saw a complete change of attitude as our team took the reins of the game and obtained a goal. They challenged their opponents several times, however they let College Life scored again in counterattack, ending the game 3-1, despite the last efforts of our Gladiators. We played against a better team, but we showed an excellent mindset and certainly this is what we need to keep playing in the Championship.
Coach Ion Marian gave us his feedback:
We have new team players so we still need to find our way to play together the best way. For sure, the long break from last semester’s games has impacted a lot on our team. First half of the game, we basically gave away to the opponents two important goals, because we were too fearful. When you give away a full half to your opponents, it gets way more difficult to catch up. Second half was on another level, absolutely: I saw a complete different team playing, with a great attitude and behavior. We need to restart from this second half’s way of playing and mindset.
We know it’s always tough to begin the semester after the break, especially when the team needs to find a new balance with the new players. However, this was just the beginning and the season is still long!
Captain Gabriele Lanzafame also had some words for us:
We were weak and got lost for the whole first half, but then in the second half we were back to the field with a different spirit, and this was clear and visible from the way we played: offensive, focused, and brave, at least up until our physical conditions allowed us to be. We need to remind ourselves that many of us come from a long period of illness and general break from practice, so despite all, we performed just all right, but still need to improve.
MVP – Taylan Akdag
SAP vs JCU | Monday, February 14 | 9:00pm | Sapienza Sport
UISP Basketball: UCM vs JCU: 46-58
This week was super busy for our Basketball team, as on Wednesday they played again a UISP game, this time against Unicamillus University. Our Gladiators had the chance to play in a court they know, against a team they already met, so it was not the toughest game at all, even though the opponents were pretty physical and tried multiple times to catch up. The results of each quarter though, once again, show how our guys were always a step ahead, dominating the match all the time.
1st: 8-15; 2nd: 20-33; 3rd: 33-40; 4th: 46-58
Coach Jose Cano was again very happy about the team’s efforts:
This is an amazing group we have! We have had only one practice, more than a week ago, and we are still able to rally together and get two big wins this week. Our opponents this time out were very physical and tried to use that physicality to get in our heads but we stayed focus and powered through, Noam, Edoardo and Benjamin were our defensive anchors. A couple of key threes from Edward at the perfect time helped us maintain our lead and power on through for the win. I’m proud of both team wins, thoroughly the bad officiating and dirty plays we stayed focused and obtained our goals.
For sure, being a brand new team is not a problem for these guys, who are really showing off their Gladiators’ spirit, with a great sport attitude, mindset, and respect for their opponents and for the game rules. We look forward to seeing you guys competing in new exciting sport challenges and toughest games. Keep up the good work!
In this video our Small Forward Edoardo Giudici scores as a real Gladiator; we also asked him his thoughts about this game:
We kicked off the right way, playing some very good actions. However, the match began to be a little physical and tempers started to flare. We remained focused, playing as a cohesive team, and always a step ahead; so we brought back home a great victory.
Our Captain Noam Yawetz‘s words about Wednesday night game:
We did an excellent defensive job in our last game, and we stopped their fastbreak game. We are in an ongoing process, getting better from game to game. I’m glad we’re getting better, and we need to continue with this graph.
MVP – Benjamin Zellmer
JCU vs LIB | Wednesday, February 16 | 9:30pm | Via Guattari, 45
Oroverde COED Volleyball: JCU vs ICP: 3-2
Our COED Volleyball ended the 4th week of games by winning 3-2 against Icaro Per Caso team in the Oroverde Tournament. However, Thursday night’s was not an easy win, even though the opponents were not the best team we have played against. Indeed, the opponents were able to take advantage of all their means and skills during the match, giving us such a hard time, just because we made many mistakes, especially at end of the first set and throughout the third. Here are the match results:
First set: 24-26; Second set: 25-9; Third set: 21-25; Fourth set: 25-12; Tie break: 15-9
Coach Stefano Papari gave us his feedback on the team and comments on the match:
This was only half of a victory. Indeed, having seen the opponents’ level and skills, we should have brought back home a 3-0 victory, but so it was not due to the many mistakes we made. The first set we were playing well as were winning 20-12 but after a while, things had changed and ICP won thanks to our mistakes. Of course they did their best, and I sincerely congratulate, but we are to blame, too. As a matter of fact, we showed how better we were in the second set, which we won hands down. In the third set I saw the same mistakes of the first, especially in the offensive phases were we wanted to complicate things too much. But finally, the fourth set and the tie break we focused again and we made it to the victory. I am sorry for our bench, always ready to cheer, support, and play when needed, but unfortunately there was not a chance for them to play this time, even though they could have, since the opponents’ level was, again, not so high. I want to thank the benching players’ for their patience and support.
Although this victory left a bitter taste, we know our Gladiators are going to play better and show the stuff they are, especially since next week there is an important match against AUR in the University of Rome Tournament. Let’s take this game as a warm-up and let’s keep focus on the next week’s game!
MVP – Mara Peruzzi
AUR vs JCU | Wednesday, February 16 | 9:00pm | Via Fonteiana, 117