Women's Soccer Announces 2012 Schedule
May 29, 2012
MILWAUKEE – Head coach Markus Roeders and the three-time BIG EAST American Division champion Marquette University women’s soccer team has announced its home and away opponents for its 20th season of competition in 2012.
The Golden Eagles will face five teams that participated in the NCAA Women’s Soccer Championship, including national runner-up Duke at the Duke/Nike Classic.
“We will celebrate the 20th season of Marquette women's soccer with another highly competitive schedule,” said Roeders. “I think it is a great mix of terrific opponents at home and on the road, which should prepare us for the BIG EAST portion of the schedule. We have great balance between experienced players, who have won multiple championships and made trips to the NCAA tournament, and our younger ladies who are eager to take huge steps forward this fall. The team embraces the rigors of this schedule and it should be a lot of fun.”
Marquette will host Wisconsin for its lone exhibition match of the season on Thursday, Aug. 9 at 7:30 p.m. The date with the Badgers marks the fifth consecutive year the teams will face off in exhibition play.
“As we saw this spring, the scrimmage versus Wisconsin will help us prepare for the games that count. It is the right game at the right time due to the competition level and the emotions that come with it. It will help us learn what works and what we need to keep working on prior to the first match,” said Roeders.
Following the conclusion of its preseason training camp, Marquette will play its first three games of the season at Valley Fields. The Golden Eagles open the season against St. Bonaventure on Friday, Aug. 17 and host 2012 College Cup participant Florida State on Sunday, Aug. 19 at 1 p.m.
“We are looking forward to starting at home for our first three matches. Manoj, St. Bonaventure’s coach, has done an outstanding job with his program and they consistently finish in the top of the Atlantic 10. They are organized and he gets his group to play the right way to get results. Florida State has been a thorn in our side the last couple of years and we know they are excellent as a team. We will need to play a full game to get a result. We have knocked on the door the last couple of years against them but mistakes cost us the matches,” said Roeders.
UW-Milwaukee travels to Valley Fields for an 8:30 p.m. kick-off following the men’s soccer team’s clash with the Panthers at 6:30 p.m. on Friday, Aug. 24.
“The match with Milwaukee is always a classic and with the addition of Greg as their new coach, I am sure he will have a few surprises up his sleeve that evening. It should be a fabulous night and our expectation is to break an attendance record at Valley with the doubleheader with our men’s team who will also be playing Milwaukee that evening,” said Roeders.
The Golden Eagles travel to Saint Louis for their first road contest of the season on Sunday, Aug. 26. MU continues on the road at Northwestern on Friday, Aug. 31, before returning to Valley Fields to host Central Michigan on Monday, Sept. 3 at 1 p.m.
“We will be in a three game stretch against teams that we played against last year, Milwaukee, St. Louis and Northwestern, who all have had coaching staff changes. Kat at St. Louis has a ton of experience and is a great coach, I am sure St. Louis will be vastly improved over last fall. Northwestern, with Mike Moynihan and David Nikolic, will take a giant step forward this season and we will need to play at a high level to get results on the road. Coming back and facing Central Michigan at home will be no easy task. CMU is a classic favorite in the MAC,” said Roeders.
Marquette will travel to Durham, N.C., for the Duke/Nike Classic where it will take on North Carolina on Friday, Sept. 7 and the host Blue Devils on Sunday, Sept. 9.
“Our trip to Durham for the Duke/Nike Classic is probably the toughest tournament that we have scheduled over the past few years. Duke came within minutes of winning the NCAA title last fall and Robbie Church has a large group of veteran players returning. North Carolina is still the giant of giants and until somebody can keep them out of the national title picture for multiple years, they will be hungry and willing to push every game as if they are playing for a championship,” said Roeders.
Following the Duke/Nike Classic, the Golden Eagles will remain on the road for its first three BIG EAST Conference contests of the season. The Golden Eagles begin their American Division title defense at Pittsburgh on Thursday, Sept. 13, and will play at Seton Hall and Rutgers.
“Traditionally the first Big East match is a turn of the page during the season. The rules and environment of playing in the league are just a little different and playing on the road will be tough. In order for us to have a chance to stake a claim at our fourth consecutive BIG EAST American Division title, we will need to start strong and keep teams behind us,” said Roeders.
Sandwiched between its matches with Pittsburgh and Seton Hall, the Golden Eagles will host George Mason for its final non-conference match of the regular season.
“Once we get into the regular BIG EAST season, our entire focus will be to win games, earn points to put ourselves in a position to win a championship and get the best possible seeding for post-season matches,” said Roeders.
Louisville and Cincinnati are the first of five BIG EAST foes to visit the Valley on Sept. 28 and Sept. 30, respectively.
Marquette will play its final three regular season conference games following a trip to Providence (Oct. 5) and Connecticut (Oct. 7). The Golden Eagles will host St. John’s (Oct. 12), Syracuse (Oct. 14) and USF (Oct. 20) to close out the regular season.
Senior Night festivities will mark the end of the regular season on Saturday, Oct. 20 against the Bulls. The careers of Rachel Brown, Megan Jaskowiak, Ally Miller, Lisa Philbin and Rachael Sloan will be celebrated in a pre-game ceremony.
“Finishing the last three games at home will be an added bonus and senior night will be extra special for Rachael Sloan, Ally Miller, Lisa Philbin, Rachel Brown and Megan Jaskowiak. We will need to rely heavily on this group of leaders and although they can't do it by themselves, we definitely want them to finish their careers on a high note,” said Roeders.
The BIG EAST Championship kicks off on Oct. 25 with first round play, followed by quarterfinal action on Sunday, Oct. 28. Connecticut will play host to the semifinals and final at Joseph J. Morrone Stadium Nov. 2-4.
The Golden Eagles welcome back 22 letter winners and nine starters from a season ago that captured MU's third straight BIG EAST American Division Championship and advanced to the second round of the NCAA Championship.
A combined season ticket pass for 2012 women's and men's soccer regular-season home games are available now for just $30 by calling the Marquette ticket office at 414-288-4668.