Women’s Soccer Releases 2018 Schedule
LOUDONVILLE, NY – Siena Women's Soccer Head Coach Steve Karbowski has released the Saints' 2018 schedule. Siena's slate is highlighted by a pair of non-conference matches vs. Big East foes, and the Saints will play half of their 18 regular season home matches at Siena Field. "We are eagerly anticipating the return of the team for preseason," said Karbowski, who enters his milestone 20th season leading the program. "This will be one of the most challenging and competitive non-conference schedules that we've played. The schedule has a good mix of home and away matches with opponents from five different conferences, and the first month of the season will have us well prepared heading into MAAC play." Siena embarks upon its 2018 campaign by playing five of its first seven matches at home. Over the past 11 seasons, the Saints boast an impressive 64-20-10 (.734) record within the friendly confines of Siena Field, which includes a stellar 33-6-2 (.829) mark in non-conference action. Siena kicks off its 39th varsity season with the program's earliest ever regular season opener when the Saints host Big East opponent Seton Hall on Friday, Aug. 17 at 3 p.m. at Siena Field. This marks the second straight year in which the programs will square off in the season opener, although last year's lid-lifter was halted with the match scoreless in the 46th minute following an 80-minute weather delay in New Jersey. Siena concludes its season opening long weekend on Monday, Aug. 20 with a home match vs. Hartford at 3 p.m. The Saints then hit the road for the first time in 2018 the following weekend with contests at UMass (Aug. 24) and Central Connecticut (Aug. 26). Siena begins a season long three-match homestand to conclude its opening stretch and commence conference play. Following a week-long break, the Saints host Cornell on Labor Day (Sept. 3), before concluding the homestand with key matchups vs. crosstown rival UAlbany (Sept. 6) and the MAAC opener vs. Quinnipiac (Sept. 15). Siena wraps up its eight-match non-conference docket with road contests at Big East foe Villanova (Sept. 17) and Vermont (Sept. 20). The Saints and Catamounts are set to meet for the 15th consecutive season in what has become one of the most dramatic mid-major non-conference rivalries annually in the Northeast. Although Siena carries an 11-match unbeaten streak vs. Vermont heading into this year's showdown, the Saints have scored either
the game-tying or game-winning goal in the final minute of regulation or in overtime in four of the past five meetings. Siena returns to conference play for good when the Saints close out September with a home date vs. Niagara (Sept. 26), before traveling to defending MAAC Regular Season and Tournament Champion Monmouth (Sept. 29) in a rematch of last year's conference semifinal. Siena opens the final month at Fairfield (Oct. 3), and will alternate home and away contests throughout October to conclude its regular season slate. The Saints will also travel to Saint Peter's (Oct. 10), I-87 rival Marist (Oct. 17), and the regular season finale at Canisius (Oct. 24) as part of its MAAC road schedule. Siena will also host Iona (Oct. 6), Rider (Oct. 13), and Senior Day vs. Manhattan (Oct. 20) to wrap up its home league docket. The 2018 MAAC Championships revert back to a six-team format this fall. The top-two seeds will earn byes to the semifinal round, with the No. 3 and No. 4 seeds hosting quarterfinal contests vs. the sixth and fifth seeded teams, respectively, on Oct. 28. The No. 1 and No. 2 seeds will then host semifinal matches on Nov. 1, with the highest remaining seed playing host to the 2018 MAAC Women's Soccer Championship Match on Sunday, Nov. 4. The Saints are looking to build off a successful 2017 season in which they advanced to the MAAC Semifinals as the No. 4 seed, while posting an 11-8 overall record including a 6-4 conference mark. Siena is set to return eight starters this fall – headlined by 2017 leading scorer Gabby Albano and Second Team All-MAAC and MAAC All-Tournament Team Goalkeeper Taylor Dorado – in addition to welcoming in the largest freshman class in program history featuring nine newcomers.