On the way to St Louis today (I’m officially a former resident of Springfield) I stopped by my alma mater in Rolla to catch the early evening practice for the Miner’s. The squad, led by GLVC Coach of the Year Joe Ahearn, visits Springfield on Thursday evening for an exhibition match against the Missouri State Bears. Game time is 6:30 pm at Plaster Stadium.
The team includes a pair of Springfield players, freshman Taylor Arens (Catholic/Springfield SC) and junior Caleb Collier (Kickapoo/Springfield SC), pictured after practice today.
The Miner’s are coming off a season that included a share of the Great Lakes Valley Conference’s regular season championship, followed by a run to the title game of the NCAA Division II Midwest Regional, losing to eventual national champion Northern Kentucky.
The Miners were picked to finish third in the 16-team conference race in the league’s coaches poll released Wednesday, just after landing a No. 13 national ranking in the pre-season for Division II by the National Soccer Coaches Association of America – the same spot S&T finished in the final national poll a year ago.