May 14, 2013
Vanderbilt's first game-day in Brazil came on Tuesday. After a free morning that saw staff members and non-competing team members (graduated seniors) working out on Copacabana Beach, the Commodores had an afternoon game scheduled against Team Chicago Brasil, a U-18 squad coached by the director of Vasca da Gama's women's program, Mathias. The game was held at the CTLA Air Force Base in Rio on a drill field with a soccer goals at each end.
When the teams arrived, airmen were marching and chanting outside the main building as other men raked grass clippings off the pitch. A few family members of Team Chicago players were in attendance, as was a lone Commodore parent--Gena Inbusch's father, Ted, is in town on business and took the afternoon to watch his daughter play soccer (Gena was born in Sao Paolo, Brazil, where her family lived for five years).
The game started a little later than scheduled but was a spirited affair. Coach Greene broke the team into two groups and had each side play for 45 minutes, with a sub or two available in each half. Andie Lakin, Erin Myers and Keegan Thimons all played on both sides to even out numbers. While teams had chances on goal, the game ended in a 0-0 draw.
Both sides congratulated one another and took photos to remember the occasion. When the Commodores' bus returned to the hotel after the game, the entire team ran into the Atlantic Ocean, mimicking the normal cold tub they use after games. More training is planned tomorrow following by a tour of Petropolis.