Tigers Kick Off 2006 with Season-Opening Road Trip
Aug. 24, 2006
Memphis, Tenn.- After finishing the exhibition season with a 1-0-1 mark, the University of Memphis men's soccer team is set to play former C-USA rival Louisville. The Friday night match is scheduled for 6:00 p.m. (CST) and will be the season opener for both squads.
"It's great to finally get started," head coach Richie Grant said. "We're looking forward to playing some top opposition in Louisville. We've had a strong history overall against them, and we always play entertaining games with them."
Louisville has won three of the previous four meetings, but The Tigers own a 10-6-2 all-time series advantage against the Cardinals. Memphis also won the most recent match between the two schools in 2004 and will look to continue that success on Friday night.
The Tigers will be looking to change their fortunes on the road where they went 2-5-1 in 2005, but they will have their work cut out for them. The Cardinals are viewed as a program on the rise in head coach Ken Lolla's first year at the helm.
"It's vital to pick up some important wins early on the road," Grant said. "We feel this is a game that will really help us prepare for the conference road schedule, but we have to take things one game at a time. Louisville has given us some very tough games in the past, and I'm expecting a good match Friday night."
Friday's match marks the beginning of a challenging 2006 schedule that features four 2005 NCAA Tournament teams. After facing Belmont in Nashville on Sunday, the Tigers will open the home portion of the schedule by hosting Clemson on Friday, Sept. 1, at the Mike Rose Soccer Complex. But right now, Memphis remains focused on the task at hand.
"We have to worry about Louisville first," Grant said. "We have a `one-game-at-a-time' mindset, but at the same time, we feel the opening road trip will help us prepare for the conference season."