Tod Fierner

Spartans Men's Soccer Set To Host Season Opener

THE SCHEDULE: The San José State men's soccer team will kickoff the regular season over the next few days, hosting Sacramento State at the Spartan Soccer Complex before hitting the road to face Pacific. The Spartans will meet the Hornets on Friday, August 30 at 7:00 p.m. prior to taking on the Tigers at 7:30 p.m on Tuesday, September 3. 

FOLLOW ALONG: Friday's game will air live on the WAC Digital Network with Daniel Barrera on the call. Live stats will be available for both games and you can follow every San José State men's soccer game live on Twitter, @SanJoseStateMS.

TICKETS: Individual game tickets to regular season matches are on sale now via Ticketmaster charge-by-phone at (800) 745-3000 or online at Ticketmaster.com. Youth tickets are available for $5, with adult tickets on sale for $8. Group ticket inquiries should be made to (408) 924-SJTX (7589). 

- "Sacramento State is always one of our tough opponents," says head coach Simon Tobin. "We play them every year in non-conference and it's an opener we've had a few times now going back to my time at CSU Bakersfield. It'll be a good test for us as they'll cause some problems for our defense so we will see what we're about." 

- "Pacific was obviously an NCAA Tournament team last year," Tobin says. "They have a new coach as Ryan Jorden moved to UCLA but they didn't lose a lot on the field. It's always good to play a tournament team early in the year because that's where we ultimately want to be at the end." 

- Midfielder Max Allen was named to the All-WAC Preseason Team. 

- Allen and juniors Omar Lemus and Willy Miranda are back after earning All-WAC honors a year ago. 

- Lemus led the Spartans in both goals (six) and assists (four) as a sophomore in 2018. He enters the 2019 campaign with 18 career points. 

- SJSU was one of five teams to receive a first-place vote in the WAC Preseason Poll. The defending WAC Championship runner-up finished sixth in the poll of the conference coaches.

- Tobin has taken the program to back-to-back WAC title match appearances. This year's conference tournament is scheduled for November 13-17 in Colorado Springs, Colorado. 

- The San José State squad features a trio of European players in the form of freshman Kasper Poulsgaard, sophomore Finlay Wood and junior Max Allen. Poulsgaard hails from Denmark, while Wood and Allen come to San José from Wales and England, respectively. 

- The Spartans will face five NCAA Tournament teams from a year ago in 2019, with both Saint Mary's (September 9) and Air Force (October 27) coming to the Spartan Soccer Complex. 

- Senior Jeff Dukes has gotten the job done both on the field and in the classroom, earning Academic All-WAC recognition last season. It was the second such award for Dukes in his collegiate career. 

- SJSU prepared for the regular season with a pair of serviceable exhibition matches. The club played a 110-minute friendly at California before returning home and defeating Holy Cross. 

- San José State has played Sacramento State 53 times in program history, leading the all-time series with a record of 32-17-4. 

- The Spartans topped the Hornets 2-1 in Sacramento last year, using a pair of Omar Lemus goals within a four-minute span to escape with the victory. 

- The program has hosted SSU at the Spartan Soccer Complex twice in the Tobin era, topping Sacramento State in 2015 (4-2) before falling two years later (2-0). 

- The Hornets finished the 2018 campaign with a 4-11-2 record. 

- San José State is 23-4-0 all-time vs. Pacific with the last victory coming in 2016 (3-2). 

- The Tigers took the last meeting in Stockton by a 2-1 decision in 2017. Spartan great Jeremy Romero was the goalscorer in that one, converting a 77th minute penalty kick to cut his club's deficit in half.

- Pacific rolled to a 12-5-2 record in 2018, ultimately seeing its season end in the second round of the NCAA Tournament. 

- 2019 marks the sixth season at the helm in San José for Tobin, who joined the Spartans after spending the previous 27 seasons as the head coach at CSU Bakersfield. 

- Tobin is a native of London, England, graduating from Nonington College in 1983. 

- His 338 career victories ranks No. 10 in all of Division I among active coaches.  

- Postseason success has been a staple of Tobin's time in San José as the Spartans have made the Western Athletic Conference title match in both the 2017 and 2018 seasons.

- He has continued to turn out some of the top talent in the conference year in and year out, placing a total of 15 players on the All-Western Athletic Conference Team throughout his tenure.

- San José State's coaching staff features three men who each saw success in their collegiate playing days at universities throughout the state.

- Jonathan Lester is a Spartan alumnus and ranks No. 4 on the program's all time saves list with a dominant 225 in just three years.

- Jesus Sanchez played for Tobin at CSU Bakersfield, finishing his four seasons there with 16 goals and 27 assists while compiling a record of 40-22-15.

- Nic Ryan rounds out the staff as a volunteer assistant coach. He played collegiately at UC Santa Barbara, reaching the NCAA Tournament three times in four years with the Gauchos. 

- Lester is entering his third year on staff with the Spartans, while both Sanchez and Ryan came aboard prior to the start of the 2018 season.  

- San José State's 2019 roster features 12 newcomers, nine of which are freshmen. 

- 10 of the 12 newcomers hail from California, bringing the team's total to 24 in-state products.

- Three of San José State's seven non-conference matches will be hosted at the Spartan Soccer Complex, including a showdown with No. 11 Saint Mary's. 

- The Spartans seven non-conference opponents represent three different conferences (Big West, WCC, Pac-12). 

- Three of SJSU's matches this year (No. 5 Stanford, No. 11 Saint Mary's, No. 19 Air Force) will come against opponents ranked in the United Soccer Coaches Preseason Poll. 

SOCIAL MEDIA: The men's soccer program can be found on both Twitter (@SanJoseStateMS) and Instagram (@sanjosestatems). Be sure to follow for a behind the scenes look at the team.