411OnTheForty: Soccer schedule changes because of pandemic

05 Aug By
Texas Longhorns Soccer
Three games on the Texas Longhorns' soccer schedule have been cancelled and one postponed because of the coronavirus pandemic (photo by Jose Mendez / Horns Illustrated).

When the Texas soccer team released its schedule last month, the program made sure to state that the schedule was "subject to change due to any Covid-19 concerns prior to the start of the campaign." Since that statement was released, three of the team's games have been cancelled and one has been moved to a later date.

The Longhorns' matchup with New Mexico State, scheduled for Sept. 6 in Austin was axed due to the Western Athletic Conference's recent decision to prohibit soccer games before Sept. 10.

In addition, a matchup against UCF in a four-team tournament in Austin also was crossed off the schedule after the American Athletic Conference delayed all Olympic fall sports to begin after Sept. 1. The showdown against the Knights was set to be played Aug. 27. The tournament, which included Baylor, Rice and Texas State in addition to UCF also has been cancelled, but the matchup against Rice in Austin, set for Aug. 30, is the only game still on the schedule in August.

As a result of the Sun Belt Conference's delayed start to the season, a matchup scheduled against Texas State for Aug. 23 was moved back to Sept. 17.

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The season opener on August 20 against UTSA also has been removed from the schedule, although Danny Davis of the Austin-American Statesman reported Wednesday morning that a UT spokesperson confirmed the possibility that it could be rescheduled at some point later in the year.

After the Aug. 30 Rice game, the Horns are now set to play four games from Sept. 10-20 before embarking on the conference slate.

One game to watch is the Sept. 10 road match at LSU. While it has remained on the schedule, the Southeastern Conference announced July 30 that sports other than football could not start before September, and that dates and times for those sports, including soccer, would be announced at a later date. LSU and the SEC have made no announcement yet about the early games on the Tigers' soccer schedule.

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Riley Zayas is a high school freshman and freelance journalist from Round Rock, Texas. He began his journalism career as a Sports Illustrated Kids reporter and has since become a regular contributor to Horns Illustrated, covering Texas Longhorn sports. His work also includes Fellowship of Christian Athletes publications, his personal blog 360 Sports, and Sports Spectrum, a national christian sports website.