UK Men's Soccer Begins Regular Season on Friday
By Jacob Most
Aug. 28, 2014 -
DAYTON, Ohio -- The Kentucky men's soccer team will kick off the 2014 regular season at Wright State on Friday at 7:30 p.m. ET.
UK is 13-9-1 all-time in regular season lid lifters.
The match will be streamed live on www.horizonleague.org. Live stats will be available on www.wsuraiders.com.
Kentucky will then host Belmont in the regular season home-opener on Sunday at 5 p.m. The match will be part of the Grand Opening of the Wendell & Vickie Bell Soccer Complex featuring a double header with both the UK women's and men's soccer teams in action.
Cedergren on the trip to Wright State
"Wright State is a very good team and they got a great result the other day. They beat Marquette, who is ranked No. 12 in the country, 2-1. It was just an exhibition game but Wright State's a very good team. Wright State and Kentucky and several other schools are all competing for talent around this area so I know several of their players that we have looked at for whatever reason.
"They're going to be a fierce opponent. They're going to be very good, but at the same time I would hold us up against any team in the country."
UK returns 15 letterwinners from last season's squad, including eight starters (Irving, Matsoso, Reymann, Tollefsen, Wilson, Alex Bumpus, Bryan Celis and Kaelon Fox ). Eleven newcomers will dawn the Blue and White for UK head coach Johan Cedergren, who enters his third year at the helm.
UK vs Wright State All-TIme
Kentucky and Wright State locked horns for the first time since 1996 in the Wildcats' home finale a year ago.
Senior Tyler Riggs scored in his last home match, and freshman Charlie Reymann added his second goal of the year, as Kentucky posted a 2-2 draw.
WSU leads the series, 0-2-3.
Irving Named Preseason All-Conference
Kentucky junior goalkeeper Callum Irving has been voted preseason All-Conference USA by the league coaches. A native of Vancouver, British Columbia, Irving earned All-Conference USA First Team honors in 2013. Irving started 16 games in the net, recording 46 saves and six shutouts, which ranked ninth in program history. He owned a goals against average of 1.09.
Recapping the 2013 Season
The Wildcats enter a new season on the heels of a 7-10-3 mark in 2013. UK went 3-4-2 in the Conference USA, while making it to the semifinals of the C-USA tournament.
Tyler Riggs led the Wildcats with six goals and 41 shots with 13 on goal during his senior campaign. Brad Doliner capped off his solid final season with five goals and 37 shots, including a team-high 16 on target. Justin Laird finished with a team-best six assists.
Irving, Doliner, Napo Matsoso and Steven Perinovic earned All-Conference USA honors in 2013, led by Irving on the first team. Doliner and Perinovic were both named to the second team, while Matsoso earned all-freshman team honors.
For their efforts during the Conference USA tournament, Irving, Charlie Reymann and Jordan Wilson were named to the C-USA All-Tournament Team. UK knocked off the No. 2 seed Old Dominion, 1-0 in overtime, in the first round of the tournament before falling 1-0 to the eventual champion, Charlotte 49ers.
All Home Matches on SEC Network+
All 10 UK men's soccer home matches in 2014 will be featured on SEC Network+, as well as WatchESPN and the WatchESPN app, it was announced by the Southeastern Conference. Despite playing in the Conference USA for men's soccer, the SEC has received permission to broadcast all of the Wildcats' home contests on the digital platform.
With 10 home matches this season, the brand new Wendell & Vickie Bell Soccer Complex will see over 870 million possible unique visitors during the 2014 home season. With major satellite companies DirecTV and DISH signing deals with the SEC Network as well as Time Warner Cable and Comcast providers, over 87 million unique viewers will be able to watch the SEC Network at launch, and receive the SECN+ and digital platform of the network.
Brand New Home
The Wendell & Vickie Bell Soccer Complex will officially open on Aug. 31 with a dedication ceremony at Noon ET. Additionally, the stadium dedication will offer facility tours, youth clinics, face painting and more for all fans in attendance.
There will be free admission to all opening weekend matches, which feature two women's matches (Francis Marion on Friday and Ohio on Sunday) and one men's match against Belmont on Sunday afternoon.
The Wendell & Vickie Bell Soccer Complex will house separate facilities for the men's and women's programs, including new team rooms, player lounges, locker areas, coaches offices, press box and a gorgeous new grandstand. Combined with the 2011 additions of a $600,000 playing surface, a new video tower and a video board, it will immediately set the standard for college soccer facilities.