AIR FORCE at #20 NEW MEXICO
Saturday, Aug. 12, 10:00 a.m. MT
UNM Soccer Complex, Albuquerque, N.M.
THIS WEEK: Men’s soccer opens the 2017 slate with an exhibition match on the road against the University of New Mexico, Saturday, Aug. 12, at 10:00 a.m. MT.
WELCOME BACK: The Falcons return seven starters to the 2016 season, led by last season’s assists and goals leader, Austin Dewing. Five of the starters expected to play this weekend combined for 22 goals last season. Team captains Trey Pujats and John Wendt are linchpin defenders for Air Force and will look to quell the high-powered Lobo offense. Wendt concluded his junior season with five shut outs and a 1.19 goals against average. He had a .753 save percentage in 20 games played last season.
THE LOBOS: The Lobos boast a national ranking of No. 20 in the NCAA preseason coaches’ polls. Jeremy Fishbein’s squad returns to the pitch off of a 2017 Conference-USA championship title and a trip to the second round of the NCAA tournament. New Mexico concluded last season at 12-7-3 with a 4-3-1 mark in conference play.
THE SERIES: The Falcons and Lobos will be meeting for the 41st time in program history. The Falcons lead the series with 20 wins while New Mexico has registered 18. The teams have tied twice. In the last exhibition meeting in 2015, New Mexico topped Air Force, 2-1, in Albuquerque.
COACH HILL SAYS: “We like to start the season with the toughest exhibitions we can get,” explained head coach Doug Hill. “We’ve got New Mexico and the University of Denver slated and they’re both a great test for us, it really gets us prepared for the season.”
“We’ll be trying out some new freshmen also,” Hill continued. “We’ll start with our experience and work the younger guys into the game plan. It’s exciting for freshmen to get on the road and this kind of experience will give them a little glimpse of what to expect in the upcoming season.”
UP NEXT: The Falcons will see their first home action of 2017 on August 19, for an exhibition against the University of Denver. Kick-off is slated for 3:00 p.m. MT at Cadet Soccer Stadium.