Union take on Tar Heels in first exhibition

Posted: February 13, 2010

Throughout the preseason, Union team manager Peter Nowak insisted he wouldn't put too much stock into tonight's first-ever exhibition game. Still, Nowak realizes that after a few weeks of workouts, his team is anxious for tonight's match against the University of North Carolina.

The 7 p.m. game is at the Bryan Park Soccer Complex, where the Union is training near Greensboro, N.C. "Of course it is exciting for the players," Nowak said. "[But] they are just practice games, nothing less, nothing more, with all due respect to the teams we play."

The Union open their season March 25 in Seattle.

North Carolina, which advanced to the NCAA Final Four before losing a semifinal to Akron on penalty kicks, is excited to get the opportunity to measure its talent against professionals.

"This is such a great opportunity for our players to play against MLS players," Tar Heels coach Elmar Bolowich said. "As a coach you get to evaluate, but don't have the pressure of having to win the game."

That said, Bolowich, whose team figures to be a national championship contender in 2010, wants his unit to be competitive.

"We don't want to get blown out," he said. "This will be a great way to see where we are."

The same could be said for the Union.

Contact staff writer Marc Narducci at 856-779-3225 or mnarducci@phillynews.com.

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