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Indiana men’s soccer’s Trevor Swartz is playing the best soccer of his career

Indiana midfielder Trevor Swartz’s ability as a facilitator has put him on the cusp of history.

Trevor Swartz takes a corner for the Hoosiers. (Mark Timko/HN)

Heading into Sunday’s Sweet 16 matchup with Air Force, Swartz sat one assist away from tying head coach Todd Yeagley’s best single season assist total which was third in Indiana program history. It was a mark clearly on Swartz’s mind before his two-assist performance against the Falcons.

“I was happy for him,” Yeagley said. “I told him it was coming and he came right over after he did it and just said ‘I got it coach.’ So, I’m glad he was focused on the game and not beating my assist record… Couldn’t be happier for a kid. Records are meant to be broken.”

Swartz’s two assists put him at 15 for the season and five in his first two games of the NCAA Tournament. He now sits three assists behind the program record with a level of confidence fueled by some of the best soccer he has played in his entire career.

“I’m probably in the best form, having my best year, it’s my senior year and I think you expect that as a player,” Swartz said.

The common cliché of postseason sports is to always look out for the team that gets hot right before the playoffs. It’s a cliché, because it’s accurate, and Swartz embodies that.

After three assists against UConn, Swartz was the driving force behind Indiana’s win Sunday.

With Air Force man-marking on defense, defender Andrew Gutman was forced to stay back defensively on the left side of the field. That put all of the focus on Swartz.

Right off the bat in the sixth minute, Swartz sent a finessed ball into the box to the far post for an easy finish from midfielder Austin Panchot.

On the Big Ten Network broadcast, former Hoosier Patrick Doody called the cross “cheeky.”  It was appropriate at the time, but probably would have been better suited for Swartz’s efforts in the 22nd minute.

Set up on the right side of the box, Swartz fizzed a ball to the back post where only Timmy Mehl could get his head on it for the second goal of the game. It was exceptional and yet expected.

This is how Swartz has made a name for himself all season. He doesn’t stand out in the typical fashion of a goal scorer, rather he propels the rest of his team as elite facilitator. It’s a trait that Swartz knows he’ll need to master in order to make it in professional soccer and it’s a trait that his followed him from the very beginning.

“Ever since I was little growing up developing as a player I was never the most athletic, not the quickest,” Swartz said. “So you’ve gotta think fast. You’ve gotta see passing lanes and I think just throughout my whole life I just had to do that and it’s paying off right now.”

Even though Indiana’s senior midfielder isn’t a major goal scorer, at this point in the season, he has the confidence of one.

“It’s like a goal scorer right now,” Yeagley said. “He’s confident because of his success that’s booming with him. And second, he works at it. He’s diligent after practice. He spends time with Andrew and others you know to work on uncontested restarts and finds those spots that we look for. He’s a student of the game. When we give them scout details he’s locked in. Trevor in his next life could be an excellent coach, because his attention to details is as good as anyone on this team.”

The confidence and work ethic that fuels Swartz’s crosses has done one main thing for his teammates. It has made things easy for them.

“We’re all confident Trev’s gonna hit the spot,” Indiana defender Timmy Mehl said. “We just try to get to our spot and if we get there it’s pretty much an open header.”

That’s how Swartz wants it. On the second goal of the game, Swartz’s cross into the back post looked to potentially been a trajectory to the back of the net even if it didn’t connect with the head of Mehl. Luckily for Swartz, he got what he wanted.

“Ooo…no no way,” Swartz said. “I wanted the assist.”

Swartz’s desired assist gives him a rare opportunity. With 15 assists on the season, he now has bragging rights on his head coach.

“I’ll rub it in later,” Swartz said.

Eddie Cotton

I am a senior from Long Island, New York. I’m currently studying Marketing in the Kelley School of Business along with Journalism in The Media School at Indiana University. I want to tell stories and help others tell their own. I want to provide a unique perspective. Most importantly, I want to entertain. The Hoosier Network is the ideal place to do that. Follow me on twitter @EdwardKoton15 Email me at ekoton@umail.iu.edu. Please, pretty please, venmo me at @EdwardKoton

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