June 16, 2008
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NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- Seven home games and five games against teams from Tennessee highlight the 2008 Vanderbilt women's soccer schedule.
The Commodores will have matches against seven teams that made the 2007 NCAA tournament starting with an exhibition at Wake Forest on Aug. 19.
Vanderbilt will open the regular season at home against neighboring foe Belmont on August 24. It will mark the first-ever regular season contest between the two schools in women's soccer.
The Dores non-conference schedule also includes road trips to Middle Tennessee (Aug. 29), East Tennessee State (Sept. 5) and Tennessee Tech (Sept. 7). In addition VU will face Big 12 power Missouri (Sept. 12), a 2007 NCAA tourney squad, and Saint Louis (Sept. 21) on the road.
"We have a very interesting schedule this year," said Vanderbilt head coach Ronnie Coveleskie. "We added Belmont, East Tennessee State, Middle Tennessee and Tennessee Tech, all of whom are very good programs in the state. I felt we needed to do a better job of playing against teams in Tennessee and I looking forward to those contests."
Besides the season opener against Belmont, Vanderbilt will have two more non-conference home games against Big East foe South Florida (Aug. 31) and UAB (Sept. 21).
The Commodores will open SEC play with four straight games at the VU Soccer Complex, starting with Alabama on Sept. 26. They will also host Auburn (Sept. 28), Florida (Oct. 3) and South Carolina (Oct. 5), all of whom made the NCAA tournament a year ago.
Vanderbilt will then play six of its final seven games in the regular season on the road. A four-match road swing begins against Georgia on Oct. 10. The Dores will then face Tennessee (Oct. 12), LSU (Oct. 17) and Arkansas (Oct. 19) before returning home for the final game of the year in Nashville against Ole Miss on Oct. 23.
VU will finish out the regular season at Mississippi State on Oct. 26 and at Kentucky on Oct. 31. The SEC tournament will once again be held in Orange Beach, Ala., and will start on Nov. 5.
"Our schedule is very competitive and very balanced," said Coveleskie. "It is important to keep in mind that we still have a young team that has matured, but at the same time we need to have a good mix on the schedule in order for them to continue to grow. Every time we step on the field, we will have to play the best game we can possibly play to get the best result. I want it to be a challenge for our team each and every day."