Coach's Corner, with Storm head coach Steve Morris
HOFFMAN ESTATES, Ill. - Storm head coach Steve Morris analyzes a jam-packed road trip and the red-hot Baltimore Blast, winners of seven of their past eight matches.
- Question: Having played two games in a three-day span on opposite sides of the country, is it nice being back home for a match?
- Coach Morris: Yeah, I think when you have multiple games on the road, this one being an extended trip, it's nice to play in the confines of your home building again, with the home support.
- Question: Did the extensive travel and lack of regular practice have any bearing on the team?
- Coach Morris: I'm not sure. It's a different routine. But the guys are used to that and know what we have to do. This entire season we have had to alter our training schedule because of injuries and lack of numbers (of players). Just because we're on the road, without set times, shouldn't be much of a factor.
- Question: Against California, you guys maintained possession of the ball longer, took more shots, played relatively good defense outside of one open-field communication mishap. But offensively, what's your analysis of why the team couldn't finish?
- Coach Morris: I thought we played on OK game. I've seen them play better. I've seen them play far worse. California played one of its more spirited games of the year, and they deserve a lot of credit. They had seven losses in a row going in, and they had sort of a "midseason preseason" to prepare for us. They were very focused in what they needed to do. They were physical and committed. And through all that, we were right there in the end.
- Question: After cutting California's lead to one point on an earlier power play, did you feel the team could come through on the final power play down the stretch?
- Coach Morris: Our power play has been good at times. We went through a bad spell. Having Mark Ughy back solidifies our power play again. We had a good power play earlier in the match. And we had a couple good looks in the other two. We had two or three good chances in that final power play, one chance that Ughy just couldn't capitalize on.
- Question: The team signed forward Stephen Brust. How important is this signing and what does he bring to the Storm in this final third of the regular season?
- Coach Morris: He's a young, big, strong and athletic kid. And he's got some abilities. We're going to add him to the roster, and it will give us more depth. We had a roster spot available, and we need more depth up front at forward, at the target position. He brings us a lot of energy and enthusiasm, and he defends hard.
- Question: This Saturday you play Baltimore. Considering the Blast's superb play on their home field, could this be a nice opportunity to keep their road woes in check?
- Coach Morris: We really don't know how they'll play against us on the road. Every game has its own identity. They have a lot of talent, from the goalie, to the midfield, and up front. That's why they're near the top of the standings. Plus they're healthy, which they haven't always been. They're a formidable opponent. I'm just looking forward to the match. You've got two teams tied for third place, and both are in striking distance of first place. It's an important game, and it should be a spirited one.
- Interview conducted by public and media relations director Charlie Corr.
The Chicago Storm are members of the Major Indoor Soccer League. Storm offices are located at 5333 Prairie Stone Pkwy., in Hoffman Estates. For more information on all aspects of Storm soccer, including season tickets, group outings, birthday parties and more, call (866) STORM-81, or visit ChicagoStorm.net.
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