The Canisius College women’s soccer team will open the 2014 season on Aug. 16, when the team hosts Kent State in an exhibition game at the Demske Sports Complex, head coach Jim Wendling announced on Tuesday.
The Golden Griffins have nine non-conference contests scheduled, four of which will take place at home. Roberts Wesleyan (Aug. 27), Cleveland State (Sept. 12), Binghamton (Sept. 14) and Robert Morris (Sept. 20) will visit the Demske Sports Complex this season.
The Griffs will play their first road game against NJIT in Newark, N.J., on Aug. 22 and will also be on the road against cross-town rival Buffalo (Aug. 24) and long-time rival St. Bonaventure (Aug. 31). The team will close out the non-league road slate taking a trip to California, which will be the first time in program history, to take on Pacific (Sept. 5) and Sacramento State (Sept. 7) in the team’s final non-conference road games.
Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference play is scheduled to begin on Sept. 18 when Canisius travels to Saint Peter’s. The Griffs then return home for a pair of contests against defending league champ Monmouth (Sept. 27) and Niagara (Oct. 1), before hitting the road for a two-game road trip. The trip is kicked off by a visit to Hamden, Conn., to take on Quinnipiac (Oct. 4), followed by the Oct. 8 matchup against Rider.
Canisius will then play three of its last five contests at home and close out the regular season against Manhattan (Oct. 25).
This is the first year of the MAAC Women’s Soccer Championship six-team bracket format. The first round games (seeds 3-6) will play Nov. 1 with the two winning teams advancing to the semifinal round Nov. 7 at the site of the regular season champion.
The Championship game will then be played at the No. 1 seed’s home site on Nov. 9, with the winner earning an automatic berth into the NCAA Tournament field.Canisius returns 19 players from last year’s team, including sophomore Tara McPherson who was named to the First Team All-WNY All-Stars by Upper 90 Magazine. McPherson was one of two players on the Canisius roster to start all 21 games last season.