Junior midfielder Harley Spier and the Utes will test themselves against Texas Tech in a preseason scrimmage Saturday in Denver.
Aug. 10, 2012
DENVER, Colo. - The Utah women's soccer team will take on Texas Tech in a neutral-site preseason scrimmage in Denver on Saturday at 6 p.m. MT. The match is scheduled for 6 p.m. MT and is part of a double header at Denver Soccer Stadium, as the Pioneers will host Wyoming at 4 p.m.
The Utes opened training camp on Aug. 1 and have had eight days of training to prepare for its first competitive action of the season.
"Though the first week of preseason we have been really pleased with everyone's work ethic," said Utah head coach Rich Manning. "Our players came into camp in fantastic condition. We have a lot of new faces so we have a lot of growing to do as a team, but we are off to a good start."
Manning brings a squad of 18 returning veterans, including eight starters, and 11 newcomers to Denver with the hope of answering some early-season questions and evaluating the team's progress through training.
"This match will be a good time to measure where we are by playing against another good team," Manning said. "With so many new players this year, there is really good competition at several positions. We will start looking at combinations of players who can work well together under the spotlight of game situations instead of practice. It will be really good to get some experience under the lights. It's a lot easier to look good in practice, we're excited to see how we handle some game pressure."
Utah finished last season with a 10-9-1 record, going 6-5-0 in the Pac-12, good for a fifth-place finish. Texas Tech enters the 2012 season after finishing 10-8-2 overall and finishing tied for fourth in the Big 12 with a 3-4-1 mark. The Red Raiders return 19 lettermen, including eight starters.
Utah opens the regular season on Friday, Aug. 17, as the Utes face Utah State at Rio Tinto Stadium in Sandy, Utah. Kickoff is slated for 7 p.m. MT.