The Central Connecticut women's soccer program has announced its schedule for the upcoming 2014 season. Head Coach Mick D'Arcy will lead his squad into a challenging 18-match slate that features 10 non-conference contests and the full lineup of Northeast Conference opponents.
The Blue Devils will open the season at the TD Bank Classic hosted by the University of Vermont, an event CCSU won two years ago. Central will open with the host Catamounts on August 22 and then play New Hampshire on Aug. 24.
"We have put together a tough non-conference schedule that will hopefully prepare us for anything that we might face in the Northeast conference," D'Arcy said on Wednesday morning. "We are excited to return to the Vermont Tournament to open up our season. We won the tournament two years ago and hopefully this year's tournament will get our season off to a good start."
The 2014 home opener will come on Aug. 28 with intrastate rival Hartford visiting New Britain for a 7 p.m. match.
"Our home opener against University of Hartford will be a great game. Geographically they are our closest rival and of course both of their assistant coaches (Kelly Shimmin & Ciara Crinion) are CCSU legends."
The last day of August will feature a road trip to Queens, NY, for a contest at Big East member St. John's.
The month of September will feature five straight home contests with a Sept. 5 match against the UConn Huskies kicking off the Blue Devils' longest home stand of the season. NJIT (Sept. 12), Lehigh (Sept. 14), Maine (Sept. 19) and Fairfield (Sept. 21) will also visit the CCSU Soccer Field during September. The Blue Devils will also host Yale at home on October 13, in the final non-conference tilt of the season.
"We are expecting a huge crowd for the game against UConn. Coach Len Tsantiris has set the bench mark for women's soccer in our state and we are looking forward to testing ourselves against one of the best soccer programs in the nation," D'Arcy added.
October will bring the start of NEC play with CCSU opening conference action on the road at Robert Morris on Oct. 3 and at Saint Francis U on Oct. 5.
"NEC play kicks off with a tough road trip to Pennsylvania where we will need to be at our best to get results against Robert Morris and then against the reigning champion Saint Francis U on Sunday."
The Blue Devils will host Fairleigh Dickinson at home on Oct. 10 and Sacred Heart will visit New Britain on Oct. 17.
CCSU will alternate between home and away over the final four matches of the season. On Oct. 19 the Blue Devils will travel to Staten Island to play Wagner and on Oct. 26 they will visit LIU Brooklyn.
The Blue Devils will host the Bryant Bulldogs on Oct. 24 and close the regular season at home against Mount St. Mary's on November 2.
The NEC women's soccer tournament will be played on Nov. 7 and 9 at the home field of the regular season champion. The top-four regular season finishers will compete in the tournament playing a single-elimination format.