John Pulskamp vs. North Carolina FC - Sept. 14, 2019
Peter Spexarth

SPRvNC Quotes: "They nailed the game plan, they perfected it"

Swope Park Rangers head coach Paulo Nagamura

Thoughts on the game:
“I think it was brilliant. I think the guys were really, really disciplined to what we asked them to do today. I think they nailed the game plan, they perfected it. They were disciplined, they fought, they really played as a team, they never doubted themselves and it was a great performance, great to see today.”

On the progress of the young players:
“You know how the dynamic of the club is – guys are getting chances, guys are taking the chances and this is the normal chemistry that’s within the group. Probably the 27th different lineup we’ve had, it was probably the closest one we’ve had from one game to the other – we just changed Eric (Dick) and John (Pulskamp) – but I think that helped as well. That helped the chemistry of the group and the way that we approached the game today. Really pleased to see the young guys doing well as well again, it was a great performance from the entire group – not only the XI that started, but the guys that came on as well helped big time to get the result.”

On Wilson Harris’ form:
“We know that Wilson is a very dangerous guy around the box, if he gets his chance, he’s going to bury it. Unfortunately against Charleston last game, he had a couple, but we have full confidence in him that if he gets a chance he’ll put it in the back of the net and today – it’s a tough angle, great cross from Jaylin (Lindsey), but he was able to sneak that one in the back of the net. Wilson has been evolving, it’s been an up-and-down season for him but the last few games I think he’s been much better and that’s paying off for us with good performances.”

On John Pulskamp:
“John is just a natural leader. It’s a great quality to have at such a young age. He’s a fighter and he wants to win everything. John had a very good game today, very solid, I couldn’t remember any giveaways or any mistakes that he had so it was very solid for him. Not only him, but I think the entire back four did an extremely good job to deny their team and, again, I think it was a collective performance by all the guys that were there, they were very disciplined and that’s what was very pleasing to see.”

Swope Park Rangers forward Wilson Harris

On his goal:
I saw Jaylin (Lindsey) get it out wide and I know he likes to play the ball in behind, so I was just waiting for it and I made my move. It was the outside of my foot and it felt great. It wasn’t easy but I try to come across it with my left and sometimes it works to get a little flick on it, and it did that time."

On the team’s overall performance:
I think we’ve been putting up some good performances recently and finally to get a result is big time and I’m so happy for the guys."

On scoring the game-winner:
It’s a great feeling. I’m just happy for everyone. We’ve been working so hard to get results and it’s not been going our way but finally it did. Hopefully, we get a little run of games and keep going."

On the leadership within the team:
A lot of guys are stepping up and really taking control of the team and taking things into their own hands. Felipe (Hernandez) getting his contract and John (Pulskamp) is doing great. I think it’s inspiring to myself because you see young guys stepping up and I want to be right there with them."

On proof that the pathway to the pros is achievable:
It’s everything. The first team, the path is there, and they just reiterate work hard, work hard and that’s what I’m doing. I’m just going to keep doing what I’m doing right now."

Swope Park Rangers goalkeeper John Pulskamp

On the overall performance of the team:
From me all the way up to the front it was one of the best performances of the season. Defensively, offensively, I thought we created tons of chances. I thought we kind of got robbed of a couple of potential penalties. Their 'keeper came up with a really massive save in the first half. I thought from a defensive standpoint, we got the clean sheet, so we obviously did our job. From everybody’s perspective it was a great performance."

On the team’s potential:
From the start of the season we’ve always hinted at something special. Really good quality in all areas of the pitch so we know we’re capable of performances like this - it’s just a matter of drawing them out on the day."

On the team’s youthful energy:
I think it’s massive. It’s definitely the direction soccer needs to go. You see it all the time in other parts of the world. I think it just comes down to talent. If you’re good enough than you deserve to be playing."

On the leadership within the team:
It’s great. Obviously, Felipe (Hernandez) with the armband does a great job leading the lads. I just try to do my part from being in the back. Being a voice. Whether it’s giving direction or just trying to be an encouraging positive voice back there but something to keep the energy up is good. I think all 11 players brought that today."