Soccer starts season with exhibition tonight
AUSTIN, Texas — There's a new twist for soccer fans this season starting with tonight's first match, an exhibition against Air Force at Mike A. Myers Stadium.
For those fans that want a new perspective view during home games, anyone who wants will be allowed to bring their own lawn chairs to Mike A. Myers and are allowed to sit behind the end lines at all home Texas soccer matches.
Tonight's kickoff features free admission and parking in the Manor garage for all fans, with the match starting at 7 p.m.
Look for our 2019 Texas soccer season preview coming next week, and here's all you need to know ahead of tonight's match from Texas Sports:
- The Longhorns were well represented on this season's MAC Hermann Trophy Preseason Watch List as both senior forward Cyera Hintzen and junior midfielder Haley Berg made the cut for consideration for the prestigious award. Two-time All-American Hintzen secured the program's first Big 12 Offensive Player of the Year award last season after leading the league in assists (nine) and points (29) while rating second in goals (10). Berg is coming off a United Soccer Coaches All-Region and All-Big 12 sophomore season that saw her score six times and dish three assists for 15 points.
- Texas led the league by picking up four selections to the Preseason All-Big 12 Team as senior forward Cyera Hintzen, junior midfielder Haley Berg, sophomore midfielder Julia Grosso and sophomore defender Emma Regan all picked up inclusions. In all, the Longhorns boasted 33 percent of the 12-member team, marking the second-most selections in UT program history and the program’s first time with four nods since 2007.
- Junior midfielder Haley Berg will look to continue the incredible momentum from the 2019 spring campaign that saw her score 10 goals over just five matches. Included in her efforts were hat tricks during victories over St. Edward’s and Monterrey Tech. As a team, the Longhorns went 4-1 while outscoring its opponents by a combined total of 17-4. UT’s lone loss was on the road at the Houston Dash, a pro team in the NWSL, 1-0, while its wins came at UTRGV (2-1) and versus St. Edward’s (5-0), Monterrey Tech (7-0) and Houston (3-2).
- The Longhorns are bringing back some impressive production for 2019 as Texas returns 24 letter winners who totaled 24-of-39 goals (62%), 24-of-42 assists (57%) and 72-of-120 total points (60%) for last season’s 13-5-3 squad as well as all 13 goalkeeping wins and seven shutouts between the pipes.
- Texas will begin the new season at No. 19 in the preseason United Soccer Coaches poll released on Aug. 6. The Longhorns have now appeared in each of the last 25 United Soccer Coaches rankings dating back to Sept. 12, 2017.
- The Longhorns have been picked to finish third in the annual preseason Big 12 coaches poll. UT received three first-place votes and 65 total points to trail only West Virginia (four first-place votes/75 points) and defending league champ Baylor (three first-place votes/72 points).
- Once again this season, the Texas soccer program has adopted the acronym RAMPED as the guideline for the campaign. The letters represent the words Respect, Accountability, Mentality, Pursuit of Excellence, Energy and Discipline, all facets of a championship team.
- Texas is coming off a 13-5-3 campaign in 2018 that saw the Longhorns finish No. 20 in the polls while reaching the Big 12 Tournament semifinals and the NCAA Field of 64. Along the way, UT started the campaign at 9-0-2 overall and climbed as high as No. 6 in both the Top Drawer Soccer and Soccer America rankings, the highest for Texas in any poll since reaching No. 4 in the Soccer America listing on Sept. 9, 2008.
- Fans and opponents better watch out for Texas’ dynamic duo of senior forward Cyera Hintzen and junior midfielder Haley Berg. The duo combined to score 16 of Texas’ 39 goals, registered 12 of 42 total assists and managed 44 of the Longhorns’ 120 total points (37%) last season.
- Redshirt junior goalkeeper Nicole Curry’s career goals-against-average of 0.74 is currently the lowest mark in school history, 0.10 ahead of standout UT net minder Abby Smith’s career GAA of 0.84 (2012-15).