MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – West Virginia University Director of Athletics Oliver Luck has released the 2014 men’s soccer schedule, which is highlighted by five straight home matches at Dick Dlesk Soccer Stadium to open the season.
“Marlon (LeBlanc) has put together another exciting schedule against some of the top talent in the nation,” Luck says. “There are some great games on the schedule, and I look forward to watching the team take on some of the marquee teams in college soccer.”
The schedule consists of a game against a 2013 College Cup semifinalist and six conference champions, as well as six participants in the 2013 NCAA Tournament. Additionally, 11 of the team’s 18 opponents finished in the top 100 of the RPI.
“Our 2014 slate is as diverse as it’s ever been,” coach Marlon LeBlanc says. “We have challenged ourselves once again with a schedule that will test our team every time out. Our young group is excited for the challenges ahead, and we are looking forward to the 2014 season with great optimism and anticipation.”
The season will begin with an exhibition match at Ohio State (Aug. 17), followed by a home contest against Dayton (Aug. 23).
WVU opens the season with perennial powerhouse St. John’s (Aug. 29) and Oakland (Sept. 1) at Dick Dlesk Soccer Stadium. The Red Storm advanced to the second round of the NCAA Tournament in 2013. The matches are part of the annual West Virginia/Penn State Invitational.
The following Thursday, WVU will renew a rivalry with Virginia Tech (Sept. 4) at home. The teams have not met since 2004, and the Hokies hold a 7-3 series advantage.
The homestand closes out with St. Francis (Pa.) (Sept. 7) and UC Irvine (Sept. 11). UC Irvine will come to Morgantown after making it to the Sweet Sixteen in the NCAA Tournament last season.
West Virginia then will hit the road for three non-conference matches at Elon (Sept. 14), High Point (Sept. 20) and James Madison (Sept. 23). Elon went to the second round of the NCAA Tournament last year.
The Mountaineers will play two of the next three at home before opening the Mid-American Conference portion of the season. WVU will host Niagara (Sept. 26) and Duquesne (Oct. 5), while also traveling to New Mexico (Oct. 1), a 2013 NCAA College Cup semifinalist.
The MAC season commences with two road games at Northern Illinois (Oct. 11) and Akron (Oct. 17), before WVU returns to non-conference play and travels to Penn State (Oct. 22).
WVU hosts the first of two home MAC games against Bowling Green (Oct. 25), followed by a road match at Penn (Oct. 28), before returning home to face Buffalo (Nov. 1) in the home finale.
The regular season ends at Western Michigan (Nov. 8).
MAC Tournament action is held from Nov. 14-16 at the site of the highest seed.