Monday, June 1, 2015
Challenges ahead for Louisville women's soccer -- Monday Cardinal Couple
SECOND YEAR IN ACC AND NON-CONFERENCE SLATE DEMANDING
Having the advantage of being the home team in the best college soccer stadium in the nation is a plus for Karen Ferguson Dayes women's soccer team. Facing the schedule that lies ahead for the Kickin' Cards, though, is a task that will test her young squad.
Louisville will have 10 regular season games and one exhibition in Lynn Stadium this fall...five of them ACC teams and also four non-conference opponents. Things get started on Aug. 12th. when the Cards travel to NKU for an exhibition match and host Indiana on Sunday Aug. 16th.
A Friday night season opener in Lynn brings in Wright State on Aug. 21st. and Washington visits on the 23rd. The Huskies were an NCAA Tournament participant in 2014.
After hitting the road to face Kent State and Kentucky (Fri. Sept 4th.) UofL returns home to face SE Missouri State on Sunday Sept. 6th. A three-game road trip ensues with stops at UAB. Ole Miss and the conference opener against Boston College on Sunday, Sept. 20th.
The ACC is one of...if not the toughest...conferences in the ACC in women's soccer. Dangerous NCAA tournament entry from 2014 Miami comes to town Thursday, Sept. 24th. Pitt visits on the 27th. and then the Cards will seek a little revenge in Lynn against Morehead State for last year's loss when they battle the Eagles on Thursday, Oct 1st.
October looks to be a month of tough challenges for the Cards. They head to Syracuse on Oct. 4th. before returning home for a brutal three game stay against UNC, Duke and defending national champion Florida State on Saturday, Oct. 17th.
Louisville will end the ACC slate and regular season with three on the road...journeying to Virginia, NC State and Wake Forest on Halloween night.
Fourteen teams play ACC women's soccer. Louisville will face ten of them and the top four teams qualify for the ACC Championships on Nov 6-8.
The Cards may be young (just 5 seniors) but they bring back a ton of experience from 2014. Goalkeepers Paige Brown and Taylor Smith return and the strong defensive unit of Chatham DeProspo, Rachel Avant, Inger Katrine Bjerke and Hannah Konermann (Louisville Mercy) will help defend the net.
Mid-fielders Lexie Niedoba, Kari Weinland and Victoria Martinis saw valuable field time last year and the forwards will feature Allison Price, Casey Whitfield, Isabella Habudu and Shannon Dennehey (Louisville Manual).
The Cards may not be ACC Top-4 material just yet...but an improvement over 2014's 7-9-2 (3-5-2 ACC) record is certainly expected by the players and coaching staff.
Coach KFD is optimistic about the season:
"We pride ourselves on playing a tremendous non-conference schedule as we feel it helps prepare us for the rigors of the very prestigious ACC Conference and the NCAA Tournament....our first year in the ACC allowed us to gain valuable experience that we will look to build on this season and we are excited for the challenges we face."