Luther Archimede still learning to play with ‘controlled aggression’

first_imgAs a ball flew high in the air just inside the Pittsburgh defensive half, Syracuse forward Luther Archimede jumped up to head it, knowing he’d already been cautioned by the referee. Archimede won the header, but his elbow drove into Pittsburgh’s Sito Sena’s head in the process. Sena fell to the pitch.The referee hesitated for a moment before reaching into his pocket to pull out two rectangle cards. One yellow. Then, a red. Archimede had seen both of those just 14 days prior.Five minutes into the second half, Archimede went from the Orange’s starting striker to off the pitch. He went from one of Syracuse’s best forwards to the player who nearly cost the Orange a pair of games. In Archimede’s absence, the Orange sat back a man-down, defended and scratched its way to a draw.Archimede plays a critical role in Syracuse’s (7-4-4, 2-3-3 Atlantic Coast) offense. Archimede’s size and strength — 6-foot-2, 176 pounds — make him a physical option both on the ball and in the air. Sometimes though, McIntyre said, Archimede’s adjustment from his French second division club, Sochaux,has led him to be overly aggressive and pick up unnecessary fouls.“Any international player goes through an adaptation period,” McIntyre said. “I think his best soccer is ahead of him, and he’s getting used to the speed of play and physicality.”AdvertisementThis is placeholder textArchimede was not made available for this story.He’s shown flashes already this season. In his first-ever collegiate game on Aug. 30, Archimede managed six shots —two on-goal —against No. 3 Georgetown. Only Massimo Ferrin and attacking midfielder Ryan Raposo have more shots than Archimede’s 24 in total on the season.But while the freshman has started four games, he’s been sent off in two of them. When a player receives a red card, he is automatically suspended for the next game, meaning that the SU freshman also missed the Orange’s 3-2 win against Cornell and 4-0 loss to Duke.Twice, the Orange were tied in the second half with upper-tier ACC teams Louisville and Pittsburgh. Both times, Archimede’s unnecessary fouls while already on a yellow card ended his nights early.Eva Suppa | Digital Design Editor“If Luther wasn’t committed to go up for that ball in France, he would have been shouted at by his coach for lack of commitment,” McIntyre said. “Luther and all of our guys have to do a better job of recognizing that every game has a flow to it and you must manage yourselves in games.”Archimede’s first red card came at the end of regulation against then-No. 20 Louisville on Sept. 13, as he tripped a Louisville player to prevent a last-second goal. McIntyre had “no problem” with it because it was Archimede’s only option.Archimede picked up a first-half yellow card on an open-field tackle. He also nearly scored the go-ahead goal, until he was denied on the goal line by the Louisville goalkeeper.“(McIntyre) says we have to have controlled aggression,” freshman Hilli Goldhar said. “He wants our style of soccer to be relentless, aggressive, but it has to be smart, everything we do has to be calculated.”Because of Archimede’s aggression, the Orange had to play overtime and double overtime — 20 full minutes — down a man. Syracuse was in its third straight overtime game and the Orange’s heavy legs slogged to a goalless draw.Archimede came off the bench for parts of the Orange’s 1-0 loss to Wake Forest and 1-0 win against Colgate, but didn’t factor on the scoresheet or on the referee’s cards. He earned his third start against Pittsburgh, and after not registering any shots in the opening frame, picked up two yellow cards in three minutes.Eva Suppa | Digital Design Editor“I talked to him after the game,” Goldhar said. “He’s a really aggressive, get-in-your-face type player … I texted him and told him to keep his head up and keep going.”While his aggressive nature has gotten him sent off twice, it’s also positioned him to be in goal scoring opportunities more than any player besides Raposo and Ferrin. His shot numbers suggest he’s getting himself into dangerous areas, and finally, against Division III SUNY-Morrisville, the breakthrough came in the form of two scores.He’d been denied by the goalkeeper from point blank range against Louisville. He passed up a chance against Clemson, instead dishing to an even more open Severin Soerlie, who then skied his kick. His two goals against SUNY-Morrisville finally gave scores to show for his impact on the Orange’s offense all season long.Against North Carolina State on Saturday, Archimede saved the ball on the end line before playing in a cross to Soerlie. This time, Soerlie didn’t miss.Since his second red card,Archimede hasn’t been shown any cards. He’ll be a key piece for the Orange’s attack — which has relied heavily on Raposo, Ferrin and Sondre Norheim — in the postseason.If he can stay on the pitch. Comments Published on October 30, 2019 at 9:54 pm Contact Anthony: amdabbun@syr.edu Facebook Twitter Google+last_img

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