LUBBOCK, Texas – Texas Tech soccer head coach Tom Stone unveiled the 2017 schedule on Thursday, which features eight matches at the John Walker Soccer Complex.
In his 11th season at the helm of the Red Raider program, Stone has put together a schedule that features six 2016 NCAA Tournament teams, including the NCAA College Cup runner-up in West Virginia, as well as three conference champions. Among Tech’s 18 matches in 2017, 11 are against teams that posted double digit win totals last season, while six were ranked by the National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA) and five finished in the top 50 of the NCAA RPI rankings in 2016.
“As the Big 12 has evolved into one of the top conferences in the country, we have had to be very intentional about making sure that we prepare ourselves for Big 12 competition through our non-conference schedule,” Stone said. “Two Pac-12 teams, Pepperdine, conference champions and multiple NCAA tournament teams will test us and hopefully prepare us for what’s ahead.
“As for the Big 12, we have the returning NCAA Runner-up in WVU and a wide open field which appears to be as good as we have been in years from top to bottom. 2017 should be a very exciting soccer campaign.”
Stone will send his squad west for all of its non-conference slate, beginning the year in Denver for the annual preseason contest against the Pioneers on Saturday, Aug. 12, at 7 p.m.
Over the next two weekends, Tech will travel to Albuquerque and California for a pair of road matches to cap the month of August. The Red Raiders take on Grand Canyon (5 p.m.) on Aug. 18 & San Francisco (2 p.m.) on Aug. 20 as part of the Lobo Invitational at UNM Soccer Complex. Tech finishes the month with a California swing, travelling to Pepperdine (5 p.m.) on Aug. 25 and San Diego (6 p.m.) on Aug. 27.
It will be the first time the Red Raiders have ever squared off with any of the four programs during the first two weeks of the schedule.
The 2017 home opener is slated for Sunday, Sept. 3, against Appalachian State at 7 p.m. It is the latest a Stone squad has started its home schedule since 2007 when the Red Raiders went on the road for the first three matches before hosting UTSA on Sept. 9.
Tech returns to the road for the University of Arizona Tournament in Tucson, taking on Arizona (5 p.m.) & Arizona State (2 p.m.) on Sept. 8 & Sept. 10, respectively.
After the trip to the copper state, the Red Raiders spend the next two weekends at home, squaring off with San Diego State (7 p.m.) on Sept. 15 and Cal State-Northridge (1 p.m.) on Sept. 17. Tech’s next match will make history, as it will be the first conference contest for Kansas State, as the two open the Big 12 schedule on Sept. 22 at 7 p.m.
The Red Raiders conclude their homestand against Kansas on Sept. 24 at 1 p.m., before facing Texas in Austin on Sept. 29 at 7 p.m. Tech finishes the weekend at home vs. TCU on Oct. 1 at 1 p.m. The Red Raiders will have each of the next two Sunday’s off, with matches on the road at Baylor (7 p.m.) on Oct. 6, followed by a home meeting against Oklahoma State (7 p.m.) on Oct. 13.
Tech hits the road the following week to take on West Virginia (7 p.m.) on Thursday, Oct. 19, then wraps its away slate at Iowa State on Oct. 22 at 1 p.m. For the second-straight season, the Red Raiders will conclude its 2017 regular season home schedule vs. Oklahoma on Oct. 27 at 7 p.m.
The 2017 Big 12 Championship will be held at Swope Soccer Village in Kansas City, Missouri, for the fifth consecutive season on Nov. 1-5. The first three weekends of the NCAA tournament are slated for Nov. 10-12 (first round), Nov. 17-19 (second & third rounds) and Nov. 24-26 (quarterfinals) at various campus sites. The 2017 NCAA College Cup is slated for Dec. 1-3 at Orlando City Stadium in Orlando, Florida.
The Red Raiders return all of their scoring from the 2016 season and most of their backline defense from a year ago. Tech also welcomes in 11 newcomers who will mix in immediately and give the Red Raiders an enhanced scoring threat and a reinforced defense for the 2017 campaign.