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Turlock Express hoping to pick up momentum
Turlock Express player Arturo Pulido battles to keep control of the ball against his Ontario opponent last season. Pulido is one of three veterans on the Express team this year. - photo by Journal file photo

The Turlock Express opened its Major Arena Soccer League season  with a  1-3 start heading into Friday's home match with the San Diego Sockers.

The Sockers currently sit in first place in the Pacific Division with a 3-1 record while Turlock is in dead last.

The Express have also allowed the most goals in the Pacific with 48 goals while scoring just 29, including a 0-3 road record.

“We just put a new team together, brought people from out of town to bolster the roster and now it's part of gelling together,” said Express head coach Art Pulido. “We also had a long road trip, right now just a tough trip.”

It looks like the Express have gone through a rollercoaster career since turning into a professional team.

They won just three games last season with a 3-17 overall record while going 9-11 during the 2014-15 season.

“We kinda went through progression when we started,” said Pulido.

Prior to the beginning of this season, the Express saw investors flock the team and assist them in ways they had never seen before.

“It's that kinda difference to take care of the players the way they are supposed to and major upgrades for the facility for the upcoming year,” said Pulido. “Now we have LED lighting and that is one step, the entire building has done that and we have two bleachers but have six other bleachers waiting for next season when the new rendering is done.”

The Express also saw a boost in playmakers from outside the area.

Adrian Gutierrez and Martyn Arista, along with Arturo Pulido are back for the Express.

They also benefitted from signing El Salvadorian scorer Anibal Echeverria and forward Ivan Campos is also back.

Christopher Welch, a former Sacramento Surge, has also joined this year's squad.

“We've got that veteran experience for sure we just have to play together more,” said Pulido. “We've got some scorers this year. The team changed a little bit because of our new investors and big things are going to happen for the future of the Express.”

The Express will host San Diego at 7:05 p.m. Friday at Turlock Indoor Soccer Arena, 500 S. Center St., Turlock.