Buckeye freshman writes about his first trip to the NCAA Tournament 

COLUMBUS, Ohio Dave Tiemstra, a freshman defender on the Ohio State men’s soccer team, is entering his first NCAA Tournament. He has started all 19 games this season and tallied two goals on the year, including the game-winner against Central Florida in his second collegiate game Aug. 31. The Clarendon Hills, Ill., native was a unanimous selection to the Big Ten All-Freshman Team.

Tiemstra and the Buckeyes begin NCAA play against Oakland at 1 p.m. Saturday in Rochester, Mich. The winner advances to play Akron Tuesday, Nov. 25 at 7:30 p.m. in Akron.

NCAA Excitement by Dave Tiemstra:

This is a very exciting time for every single player from every single team who made it into the NCAA Division I Men’s Soccer Tournament. As a freshman, I could not be more excited. Even though I have played a full season already, it adds a little more pressure playing in the NCAA tournament where it is single elimination. It has been my dream for years to play college soccer at this level and playing in the postseason is a big step in the fulfillment of that dream.

The excitement for this first game on Saturday builds every time I think about it. With this excitement comes this intensity that is almost indescribable. In practice each day, every player on the team has a higher intensity and just seems to be putting in that little something extra to get as best prepared as possible for the upcoming game against Oakland.

I believe the game against the Oakland University Golden Grizzlies will be a tough and close game. I haven’t heard much about them throughout this past season but you can never underestimate an opponent and they are obviously a good team for being in the tournament and having such a good record.

The week before this game is and has been one of the most exciting weeks of practice I have experienced here at The Ohio State University and I cannot wait to get up to Michigan to play this challenging first round game in my first NCAA Tournament.