No. 24 Texas Tech soccer team starts its most anticipated season in program
history tonight at 7 p.m. when the Red Raiders travel to Albuquerque to play
the New Mexico Lobos.
made the program’s first ever NCAA Tournament appearance in the 2012 season and
got to host a first round game. The Red Raiders defeated North Texas in the
first round and lost at Florida State in double overtime.
on the road may have played a key factor in the loss to Florida State. Road
woes are something Head Coach Tom Stone wants to change.
of the things we realized last year was that we need to be a better road team,”
Stone said. “We won some good road games last year, but we want to be better on
the road, so we’re starting out on Friday away.”
finished 3-4-1 on the road last season including the loss to top-seeded Florida
State. Three of those losses were in non-conference games with two of them
coming at the hands of teams from the Southeastern Conference.
factor going against the Red Raiders is history. The Lobos hold a 2-4-1
advantage over Tech since the two programs first met in 1995. Tech has not
started on the road since 2007 when Georgia routed the Red Raiders 4-1.
team looks to push history aside after a 1-0 road victory against the #25 Denver
Pioneers in an exhibition game.
senior midfielder and team captain Conner Williams said the exhibition game is
think it’s really important because both Denver and New Mexico are very strong
teams,” Williams said. “New Mexico has always been really difficult to play.”
defeated the Lobos 2-0 at home in 2012. Both goals were scored by players who
return this season. Alli Murphy scored the first goal
on a penalty kick nearly 50 minutes into the game.
then added an assist with less than three minutes to go when Jessica Fuston put the ball in the back of the net. Fuston is a senior this season with Murphy being a
came off the bench in that game and the bench may play a factor in this game.
The team’s top two scorers, Janine Beckie and Paige Strahan,
were held to one shot each. Strahan was a substitute
in that game too.
returns eight starters from the 2012 season including Beckie, who was recently
placed on the MAC Hermann Trophy watch list and the College Sports Madness
Pre-season All-America Second Team. Beckie is the reigning Big 12 Rookie of the
Lobos finished 11-7-2 in 2012, which included wins at Texas and Georgia. The
Lobo team is young and returns five starters. 26 of the team’s 35 players are
either sophomores or freshman.
Lobos defense kept them in ballgames last season. New Mexico scored multiple
goals in six games in 2012 and only once did they score more than 2. One of
those games was a 2-1 victory at Texas in double overtime. The Lobos defeated
SMU 4-1 for the most goals in a game. New Mexico was shut out six times in
Lobos return one player who had more than one goal. Brianna Webster had two
goals. The rest of the returning squad had four.
Stone said he believes his team is ready.
worked hard,” Stone said. “I think fitness is not a question. We’re strong, but
the team’s still coming together.”