Tech Soccer opens 2023 season tonight

Courtesy of LA Tech Athletic Communications

Louisiana Tech Soccer starts its 20th year as a program tonight as the Bulldogs take on Colorado College in the 2023 season opener at Stewart Field in Colorado Springs, Colo.

First touch is set for 7 p.m. and the game can be seen on the Mountain West Network.

LA Tech, led by third-year head coach Steve Voltz, has 13 upperclassmen on the roster and returns eight starters off last year’s team that went 7-9-3 and 5-3-2 in CUSA play, finishing fourth in the league and qualifying for the CUSA Tournament for the first time since 2019.

The Bulldogs were picked to finish third in the CUSA preseason poll as well as having defender Josie Studer and forward Flavie Dube named to the CUSA preseason all-conference team. Studer, who returns for her fifth season, was also voted as the CUSA preseason co-defensive player of the year. The defensive back is a three-time All-Conference USA selection who has 58 career starts under her belt.

Meanwhile, Dube is the reigning CUSA Freshman of the Year after leading the team in goals (five), assists (four), points (14), and shots on goal (12) during her rookie campaign.

Studer is one of six players, along with Alma Cedefors, Kalli Matlock, Tomoyo Kuroyanagi, Sophie Fijneman, and Erin Chung, who has played at least 40 matches for the Bulldogs.

Colorado College (0-0-0) is led by second-year head coach Keri Sanchez who guided the Tigers to a 7-7-5 overall record and a 4-3-4 mark in the Mountain West Conference last season, including the team’s first appearance in the MWC Tournament since 2018.

The Tigers are anchored on the pitch by Second Team All-MWC Shalom Prince who is the team’s top returning scorer, having posted 11 points last season on five goals and one assist.

Colorado College was picked eighth out of 12 teams in the Mountain West preseason poll as voted on by the league’s 12 head coaches.

This will be the second ever meeting between the Bulldogs and Tigers on the soccer pitch. The two teams faced off in Colorado Springs in 2013 as league members in Conference USA. LA Tech goalkeeper, Caitlin Updyke, kept Colorado College at bay with 12 saves (tied for the fifth most in a single game in program history), but the Tigers netted the golden goal in the 103rd minute of double overtime to win, 1-0.