Scorpions Look to Build a Solid Foundation

After the disappointment of 2013, San Antonio has started its preseason efforts a little sooner
by Chris Hockman   |   Friday, February 21, 2014

Defending The Fort - column on San Antonio Scorpions (SASFC) & the San Antonio soccer scene.

The San Antonio Scorpions had a poor start in 2013 and it cost them dearly. A bad preseason, coupled with a late arriving squad, conspired to put the Scorpions deep in the hole.

In 2014 a quick start will be even more crucial, with just 9 matches determining the host of the 2014 Soccer Bowl. Getting off to a rocky start after just 3 matches would be a third of the season gone and plague the team for the rest of the spring.

Conversely, the reverse is true – a good start of just 3 matches would have San Antonio undefeated with a third of the season gone, looking comfortable at hosting the Soccer Bowl.

With that in mind, the Scorpions have done the right thing, responding from their poor 2013 by getting started with their preseason and compiling their roster earlier than last year.

While there’s still plenty of people to come in to the squad, and plenty of trialists have joined the squad in February, and MLS players still waiting to be culled will also join, the Scorpions still have a bigger squad than at this point in 2013.

In addition, the preseason training of 2014 is much more intense than it was in 2013 as Scorpions manager Alen Marcina has his squad doing double sessions while they don’t have the distraction of weekly matches, taking advantage of the milder weather before the heat starts.

The biggest help is the friendly matches being played. That improvement is 2-fold, with a higher quality and scheduling the matches further out, giving time for more matches.

In 2013 the Scorpions played only NPSL teams and lower division NCAA teams in the preseason, which was clearly inadequate preparation to play a professional season. The 2014 preseason has already begun to take shape, with San Antonio taking on the SMU Mustangs on Saturday, which sends them on the furthest journey the Scorpions have played a preseason match.

But the biggest match will be their encounter against FC Dallas on March 1, the first time the Scorpions have ever taken on an MLS team in preseason. But it’s a long overdue match up for the Texas side.

It is just a week out from the MLS season, so FC Dallas will be looking to get their players ready and so should provide a great test for the Scorpions getting ready for their season.

The preseason is already shaping up to be the best preparation the Scorpions have had, which should provide a good platform for the Scorpions to get a good start in the extremely short spring season.

NEXT UP: February 22 – San Antonio Scorpions vs. SMU Mustangs, Toyota Field, San Antonio. 2 p.m. EST, Untelevised.

Chris HOCKMAN

Nationality:
Australia
College:
Univ W. Sydney & Youthworks Coll.
Club Domestic:
Houston Dynamo, San Antonio Scorpions, Austin Aztex
Club Foreign:
Central Coast Mariners
Originally from Australia found football (or soccer as you Yanks call it) a great connection in a new country. Freelance writer since 2005 covering Australian and US Soccer. Based out of San Antonio but can regularly be seen in Houston, Austin and Dallas.
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