After a month-long break, the UNM men’s soccer team is ready to spring back into action.
On the original schedule, the Lobos were going to hit the road to take on the Air Force Academy on Saturday. However, the scheduled was recently changed and the Falcons will travel to Albuquerque, New Mexico instead.
The match will be one of just two home matches the Lobos have scheduled for the spring. Both of them will be played at the UNM Robertson practice facility instead of the UNM soccer complex, where all fall season matches are played.
Air Force finished their 2016 fall season with an overall record of 14-7-1 and a Western Athletic Conference record of 6-3-1. Their season ended after they fell 2-1 to the UNLV Rebels during the WAC Championship.
When the Lobos faced the Falcons during the 2015 fall preseason, New Mexico pulled off a 2-1 victory thanks to two second-half goals by midfielder Matt Dorsey and defender Nick Rochowski, who has now graduated.
The Falcons got on the scoreboard with 22 seconds left on the game, but by then it was too late to catch up.
The Lobos are currently 1-1 in the spring season, but head coach Jeremy Fishbein said so far he likes what he is seeing from his team.
“We see spring is part of our preseason,” the coach said. “It’s an opportunity for a lot of young guys to get minutes and get the entire team involved.”
Fishbein said that he is impressed with what he is seeing from the entire group, not just a few individuals. He also added that spring is the perfect time for players to go out of their comfort zones. In fact, he says that the main focus of these exhibition matches is not necessarily winning every game.
“Of course every time you get on the field you want to win,” he said. “But right now is about giving guys opportunities to play in different positions.”
After this match, the Lobos will have two more exhibition matches, including next weekend’s home game against the Colorado School of Mines and an away game at Denver University.
Isabel Gonzalez is a sports reporter for the Daily Lobo. She mainly covers men’s soccer and basketball. She can be reached at sports @dailylobo.com or on Twitter @cisabelg.
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