LEBANON, Tenn.-- The 2019 men's soccer starts its season tomorrow, opening on the road against Tennessee Wesleyan College.
"We have a lot to be excited about with the returners and with the new lads coming in," Grant stated.
The Phoenix have been a strong competitor the last few years winning the MSC Regular Season Conference Championship in 2018 and the MSC Conference Tournament Championship in 2015 and 2017.
The team returns key pieces from last year's team, bringing back: Forwards Bakary Bagayoko and Martin Walsh, Midfielders Tyler Watson, Brandon Gonzalez and Abdulkhalik Abdi, and Defenders Jonathan Waldenstrom, Austin Morenzoni and Aiden Doherty. They are looking for newcomers to step up and fill in big roles after the graduating seniors departed.
"It is hard to replace the senior class that we just had." Grant went on to talk about how that class really helped get the program to where it is today and how they set the standard. "but we have brought in great kids and going forward I think we have more depth than we have had in the past. The experience that our junior class has will help us tremendously with them winning championships."
As the preseason polls stand right now, Cumberland has three matches set against teams ranked or receiving votes in the national poll. They go on the road to take on RV Thomas University on August 31st, at No. 21 Bethel on September 17th and at no. 17 Lindsey Wilson on October 15th.
"We have a great first game tomorrow (against Tennessee Wesleyan) and we play a tough out of conference schedule including the trip to Atlanta when we play Thomas and SCAD-Savannah and our conference is always really tough." Grant added about the competition they will face this year.
Cumberland opens up their home schedule next Tuesday August 27th vs Fisk University at 3 p.m.