BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) – For soccer enthusiasts in Western new york, games at all high stadium, the home of f-c buffalo are a staple in the summer time.
The fans are rowdy.
The competition is good.
And, there has always been local flavor. Alumni and current student atheltes from the UB men’s soccer team have filled the roster.
“I would say it is a great club,” UB junior, FC Buffalo team member and New Zealand native Fox Slotemaker said. “I played here a couple years ago and it was a good tune up and I wanted to be a part of what they are doing.”
But this season will be the last time that happens.
University at Buffalo athletics cut four programs in April, men’s soccer being one of them.
“Everyone was calling their parents, a lot of people were in tears obviously and it was a horrible day for all of UB,” Slotemaker added.
“This is three years of your life if you’re like Fox and myself,” fellow UB athlete and New Zealander Cam Hogg added. He is a goalkeeper for FC Buffalo. “Moving 9,000 miles to be a part of something we really invested in.”
“Growing up with UB soccer since I was a little kid, going to the camps and being a ball boy at games,” UB soccer alum and St. Joe’s grad Braden Scales said. “That was the emotional part for me and I don’t think they took into account how far out in the community it reached.”
Their frustration is clear. traveling thousands of miles away from home to play college soccer, only to have that dream altered…many of the former Bulls have landed right back on their feet, signing with different universities to continue their careers. but before that, they’re getting one more season to play together in buffalo.
“Luckily us for athletes we are young, we are made of rubber and can bounce back,” Hogg continued.
“They have helped me a great deal on the field,” head coach Frank Butcher said. “The bad part is unfortunately we won’t get many of them back next year.”