U of L soccer primed for a new season

University of Louisville soccer coach Ken Lolla participated in a media day session on Wednesday, talking about the upcoming season and his new players. The Cardinals open the season on Aug. 30 at Virginia.

With a roster loaded with new faces, University of Louisville men's soccer coach Ken Lolla is ready for a new season.

But even with a new roster, the Cardinals have the same expectations.

U of L, the 2010 NCAA national runner-ups, have made it to the NCAA Tournament Elite Eight three years in a row and are ranked as the No. 10 team in the preseason coaches poll this fall.

"The people we develop have helped the success of the program but have also risen the expectations of the program," Lolla said. "Although we have a lot of new faces, a lot of new faces this year, our expectations have not changed one bit.

"The players that are a part of our program understand that, they understand that as part of the process coming into our program and have received that and thus far in preseason have worked very hard to maintain the standard of the program."

Lolla, who participated in the annual men's soccer media day on Wednesday at Cardinal Park, said he's been "really happy" about what he has seen in the first two exhibition games of the season. U of L beat Lindsey Wilson and tied Michigan and will now play Northwestern on Saturday at Cardinal Park.

"We are very excited about the group we have," Lolla said. "There has been a tremendous learning curve already in preseason. A lot of growth and still a lot of growth ahead of us this season."

In the eighth season with Lolla at the helm, the Cardinals were tabbed as the second-choice in the American Athletic Conference behind Connecticut. Zack Foxhaven, Daniel Keller and Marlon Hairston were all tabbed to the AAC preseason All-Conference squad.

"The way we ended the spring was really positive and that made us really excited for the fall," Keller said. "And now it's here."

U of L will open the regular-season on Aug. 30 at 8 p.m. in Charlottesville, Va., against the University of Virginia.

Cardinal Authority will keep you posted on the soccer season.


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