ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. - The fifth-ranked University of New Mexico men's soccer team just received a huge addition three weeks before the start of the regular season. Kevin Correa, a member of the 2014 MAC Hermann Preseason Watch List, has transferred to the Lobos from St. Francis (N.Y.), and he will be eligible immediately and have two years of eligibility remaining.
"We're really excited to have Kevin join our program," UNM head coach Jeremy Fishbein said. "He has been a big-time goal scorer the last two years. He has a diverse playing background and has had a very unique experience growing up in New York City. We feel he's going to bring a dynamic presence to our team."
The feeling is mutual as Correa could barely contain his excitement about joining the program.
"I got a chance to watch them in the NCAA Tournament the last few years, and I really liked the way they played," he said. "The style of play really fits my skills and is a fun way to play the game: attacking to get the ball back (on defense) and then transitioning and attacking on offense. It's a great program with a great tradition."
The six-foot-one junior scored 13 goals and added six assists for the Terriers in 2013 as he was named an NSCAA/Continental Tire Third Team All-American. He finished sixth in the NCAA in points per game (1.68), eighth in total points (32) and ninth in both total goals (13) and goals per game (0.68). He scored two goals in a game four times last season, including both of the Terriers' games in the Northeast Conference Tournament. In his first season in 2012 he scored 11 goals and had three assists.
He brings more to the table than just his goal-scoring ability, however.
"I'm going to come in and work hard," he said. "It's not about me. It's about the team. Anything I can do to help the team get a win is what I'll do. I'm going to work hard and lead by example."
Correa joins a loaded Lobo roster that returns seven starters from last season's run to the College Cup and was voted No. 5 in the preseason by the NSCAA. Alreadly an overwhelming favorite to win a second straight C-USA title, the Lobos are adding another weapon to a loaded arsenal that is returning 80 percent of its goal scoring from last season's squad.
"This is going to be a different environment for him," Fishbein said. "He's going to be surrounded by top-level players. His job is to make our team better, and we feel he's going to do that. He's an ambitious playmaker."
Those playmaking skills were evident in his two seasons at St. Francis, and they were honored Wednesday morning when he was named one of 32 players on the MAC Hermann Preseason Watch List.
"It means a lot to me (to be on the list)." he said. "It's very exciting."
The MAC Hermann Trophy is the most prestigious individual award in NCAA soccer presented annually to one male and one female athlete. The winners will be announced Friday, Jan. 9, 2015, at the trophy presentation banquet at the Missouri Athletic Club in St. Louis
"I told my mom, and she wasn't exactly sure what it means," he said with a laugh, "but after I explained it she was very excited and so am I."
Near the end of the collegiate regular season, NCAA Division I coaches that are NSCAA members will vote on their top choices and the list will be narrowed down to the top 15 players. College soccer fans will also have the opportunity to participate in the selection process, by voting for their favorite semifinalist in November at the MAC Hermann Trophy website, managed by LockerDome.
From that pool of 30, six finalists (three men, three women) will be chosen for the award. You can see the complete release and all 32 nominees at the NSCAA website.
Lobo Pride Pass
Lobo Pride Passes are on sale now. For just $50 fans can gain access to both home exhibition matches and all 11 regular-season matches at the UNM Soccer Complex. The purchaser will also be able to attend all ticketed women's soccer, volleyball, track and field, softball and baseball home games during the 2014-15 season. The first 500 purchasers will also receive a free red Nike Lobo hat and a $5 concessions voucher. Call (505) 925-LOBO or visit the Lobo Ticket Office in The Pit to order or for more information.