Timo Pitter’s value to the Creighton soccer team grows as the Bluejays get deeper into their season.
The freshman from Oberschwarzach, Germany, has emerged as the primary scoring option for Creighton, a vital development on a team that at times has struggled to score, Bluejay coach Elmar Bolowich said.
“We needed that to happen,” Bolowich said. “He’s our main goal scorer right now. There is very little threat coming from anyone else in that regard. That’s a tremendous accomplishment for a freshman.”
Pitter leads No. 16 Creighton with seven goals heading into Saturday’s regular-season finale at Evansville. A victory or tie in the 7 p.m. match would lock up the Missouri Valley Conference championship and secure the No. 1 seed for next week’s conference tournament.
A loss would still allow the Bluejays a share of the title, but drop them to the No. 2 seed behind Evansville.
Bolowich said Pitter’s development has been somewhat expected, based on what the coach learned about the 5-foot-9 midfielder-forward during the long-distance recruiting process. Pitter’s success, though, has caught the player a bit off-guard.
He didn’t know what to expect when he arrived at Creighton during the summer. He had never heard of the school until an intermediary put him in contact with Bolowich.
When his friends back home found out he was headed for Omaha, Pitter said, they would say, “‘O-what? Are you going to Canada?’ The stereotype back home of America is that it’s all like Florida or California.”
Once he realized there were no beaches in Omaha, Pitter went about the task of adjusting to life as a Division I athlete in the middle of the U.S.
“I was excited and afraid at the same time,” Pitter said. “What makes it tough here is that sport and school are combined. In Germany, it’s separated. It’s harder here to get both done when you’re combining soccer and trying to get a good education.”
Pitter credits his coaches, teammates and Creighton’s athletic support staff for helping ease his transition.
“I got a lot of help,” Pitter said.
Pitter’s on-the-field adjustment hasn’t been as difficult because he had been playing on a club team in Germany against older players.
“The style of play here is different,” Pitter said. “It was a more physical, rough game in Germany. When we play against the good teams here, there is a lot of speed in the game.
“I like that part of it.”
Bolowich says Pitter has barely scratched the surface.
“He’s going to have a chance to perfect his role as an attacking player for us,” Bolowich said. “That always won’t be expressed in goals, but in his play and the impact he can have on our team.
“He’ll become a more mature player, a player willing to work on the things he needs to improve. There are things you can always work on. Good players have aspirations of continuing their career beyond college, and we need to start working towards that end already.”
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