Saturday afternoon, forward Bobby Trybula was just thankful that
he had a spot on the team bus to Columbus. The freshman has only
suited up for about 20 percent of Michigan’s games this season and
usually only gets about 10 minutes of playing time.
So when Michigan coach Steve Burns decided to sub him in during
the final moments of the then-scoreless game against the Buckeyes,
Trybula knew his coach was expecting something special.
“He pulled me off to the side and was like, ‘Score me an ugly
goal,’ ” Trybula said.
Trybula knew exactly what Burns meant.
When Trybula stepped onto the field, Michigan had just been
awarded a corner kick.
Corner kicks are dangerous because members from both teams are
clumped together near the goal, making it difficult to get a piece
and clear the ball.
Sophomore Adam Bruh sent the ball into the chaotic mess of
Wolverine and Buckeye players in front of the net. Kevin Taylor
found the ball first and passed it into the box. After bouncing
around, Trybula finally united his left foot with the ball and
kicked it in with a side volley.
The goal wasn’t pretty, but it did the job. The Buckeyes had
fallen 1-0 to the Wolverines for the third year in a row.
“I was brought into the program so I could finish ugly goals,”
Trybula said. “I guess that’s my specialty. I’m not a player that
triples three people and then puts the ball up at 90 (degrees).
“I make the defense safer and cover their mistakes.”
But Michigan did not win this game on Trybula’s goal alone.
Although the Wolverines have triumphed over this rival before, the
game was no easy battle.
“Ohio State’s the kind of team that makes you play in ways that
you don’t really want to,” Burns said. “They make you play more of
a direct game. It was a hard-fought victory, that’s for sure. Lots
of fouls, lots of tension on both sides.”
Burns noted that both teams had similar skill level, but what
made the difference were central backs Joey Iding and Kevin
“They really did a great job keeping the play in front of them,
not allowing anything to get behind them,” Burns said. “And
stepping up and challenging a lot of balls that they needed
This game marked the end of the men’s soccer regular season.
After a 10-day hiatus, the team will head to Bloomington for the
first round of the Big Ten Tournament.