IRVING, Texas – The University of Dallas men's soccer team announced its schedule for the 2019 season. For the seventh consecutive season, the Crusaders open the new campaign at the friendly confines. This fall will mark the second year UD plays at its new soccer facility that was done last summer and features lights for night contests.
Dallas has 17 matches on the docket with 10 of them at home, where the team went 5-2 in 2018. While there will be some familiar opponents that are in the Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference (SCAC) in September, matches will not count toward league play until October 4 when UD is at Southwestern University. The Crusaders will play every conference team once, with just four on the road and a season-long, five-game home stretch in between (Oct. 11 – Oct. 27).
The Crusaders will open the season on August 30 versus Howard Payne University. These teams last met in 2017, when the Yellow Jackets prevailed 2-1 in double overtime. In 2016, Dallas won 5-1 at home in the season opener.
UD caps a three-game home stretch versus University of Wisconsin-Superior (September 1) and University of Mary Hardin-Baylor (Sept. 6). A season ago, the Crusaders dropped a 1-0 result at No. 16 UMHB. Both UW-Superior and UMHB qualified for the NCAA Tournament in 2018 and advanced to the second round.
After that, the rest of Dallas' schedule features all SCAC opponents, including newly affiliated member University of St. Thomas (TX) out of Houston. Dallas will play its first road game of the fall nearby at Austin College for a non-conference match (Sept. 13).
With over a week off, the Crusaders wrap up a stretch of five home games out of six when Schreiner University and typically nationally ranked Trinity University come to town on Sept. 20 and 22 for non-conference tilts. Dallas is only one-of-two teams from the SCAC to defeat Trinity once in consecutive seasons (1994-95 Centre College) and have done so three-of-four years with two instances coming at home.
The month and non-conference games end on the 27th and 29th with road matchups at St. Thomas and Centenary College. The road stint extends to a season-most four with a pair of matches the following weekend at Southwestern and Texas Lutheran University (Oct. 6).
Starting on the 11th with that long home stand will be a rematch with Austin College. A week later, Johnson & Wales University (CO) and Colorado College come down from Colorado for two league matches on the 18th and 20th, respectively. The third consecutive weekend home will have Centenary (Oct. 25) and St. Thomas (Oct. 27) for its second meetings on the season. The latter contest should be "Senior Day."
Dallas finishes the regular season with conference games in South Texas at Trinity University on November 1 and Schreiner University two days later. The Crusaders hope to be comfortable in that part of the state, as the SCAC Tournament will be a week later (Nov. 8-10) at the seven-time tournament champion Trinity University. Dallas met the Tigers two seasons ago in the championship match in Irving. UD has made the tournament every season since 2013.
David Hoffmann enters his 17th season at the helm for Dallas and holds 148 career wins for the most in the program. His winning percentage is also a program-best at .550. Last season, UD posted an 8-8 record that included a 7-6 mark in conference. Inclement weather forced three cancellations of league matches. A quartet of opponents: UMHB, UW-Superior, Trinity, and Southwestern qualified for the NCAA Tournament a year ago, and a trio of them advanced to at least the second round. Trinity went the farthest reaching the third round. UMHB, Trinity, Southwestern, and Colorado College had been ranked at some juncture of the 2018 season in the top 10 of the United Soccer Coaches (USC) West Regional Poll.