Xavier Takes On Marquette In Opening Friendly Match

Xavier opens the exhibition schedule against Marquette on Friday.

Xavier opens the exhibition schedule against Marquette on Friday.

Aug. 16, 2012

CINCINNATI - The Xavier men's soccer team gets its first taste of preseason action against Marquette at the Shindigz National Soccer Festival on Friday in Fort Wayne, Ind.

It will be the first exhibition match of the 2012 season for the two-time defending Atlantic 10 Champion Musketeers that have had record-breaking success under third-year head coach Andy Fleming.

Xavier went 12-5-4 last season and was bumped from its second-straight NCAA Tournament by West Virginia. Returning from that squad are all 11 starters that posted 26 of 31 goals and 35 of 37 assists. Leading the offensive returners are senior Luke Spencer (7g, 6a) and junior Gino De Paoli (6g, 7a), who account for half of the returning goals.

Junior Nick Hagglund, a candidate for the Hermann Trophy, anchors one of the top defenses in the conference. Opponents scored only 19 times against the Musketeers last season, the lowest mark in program history. Joining Hagglund in the back are seniors James Queree and Sean Ryan, and junior Adar Cohen.

Starting again in goal for the Musketeers is senior Justin Marshall. The four-year starter is Xavier's all-time goals against average leader (1.11) and has had two-consecutive record-breaking years in net, which earned him NSCAA region honors.

Friday's match begins at 5 p.m. on field two.