UNM says goodbye to 4 sports programs

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ALBUQUERQUE (AP) — An era is ending at the University of New Mexico as the school officially stops four sports programs, including men’s soccer.

Head soccer coach Jeremy Fishbein says unsuccessful efforts over the past year to save the program have left those associated with it physically and mentally exhausted.

Men’s soccer has been one of the university’s most successful teams, winning its share of conference titles and making regular appearances in the national collegiate tournament.

All four programs are set to end Monday after the UNM Board of Regents voted last year to cut soccer along with beach volleyball and the men’s and women’s ski teams to shore up a budget deficit within the athletic department.

Officials also said they needed to address compliance issues with federal mandates regarding equal opportunity for female athletes.

Fishbein said it has been an honor to coach at the university over the past 18 years.

In a parting statement, he described soccer as a progressive and diverse sport that will be part of the state’s future.

“The game we all love is too powerful and too important to the youth of New Mexico and the youth of our country,” he said. “It will be up to all of you to continue the fight to re-instate Lobo men’s soccer.”

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