Aug 23, 2013
PITTSBURGH--The University of Pittsburgh women's soccer team opens its 18th all-time regular season on Sunday when it travels two miles down Fifth Avenue for a match at rival Duquesne. Kickoff is at 3 p.m. ET at Duquesne's Rooney Field. Admission is free and open to the public.
"Sunday's game is a great first test for us," Pitt head coach Greg Miller said. "It's an inter-city rival. They'll be some things that we've worked on in practice that hopefully will come out in the game and some things that we still need to work on."
"We've accomplished a lot during the preseason. We're a lot further along and prepared to face a young Duquesne team. We've tried to do the best job we could to try to bring this team together. We have a lot of youth and inexperience. I like where we are at, it's just a matter of putting the pieces together for our first test."
Pitt and Duquesne meet for the 10th time in women's soccer history. Pitt holds a 7-2-0 advantage in matchups versus Duquesne and has claimed each of the series' last seven games. In addition, the Panthers have outscored the Dukes 15-2 in those seven games, including a 3-1 victory on August 26, 2012 at Ambrose Urbanic Field last year. Pitt is 2-2 all-time in road games at Duquesne's Rooney Field.
The matchup will be Duquesne's second of the season as the host Dukes take on St. Francis, Pa. on Friday evening.
Pitt will travel to No. 23 Ohio State for its second match of the year on Wednesday, Aug. 28. That match will be a homecoming for Pitt head coach Greg Miller, who spent 11 years in Columbus as Ohio State's Associate Head Coach. The two programs scrimmaged in Pittsburgh earlier this spring.
In 2013, Pitt will face eight teams that were ranked among the nation's top-25 in the preseason NSCAA coaches' poll. Five of the top-10 ranked teams are ACC programs including defending national champion and No. 1 ranked North Carolina, Florida State (3), Duke (7), Virginia (8), Notre Dame (10), Wake Forest (15) and Maryland (17). That poll can be found here: http://www.nscaatv.com/rankings/2059/NCAADivisionI/women/Central/PreseasonPoll. In addition, Boston College and Virginia Tech also received votes.
Next Friday, Pitt opens its home schedule against Bucknell on Aug. 30. Pitt's first Atlantic Coast Conference game will be against Boston College on Thursday, Sept. 12. Pitt's 2013 women's soccer schedule also includes nine home games at Ambrose Urbanic Field and 11 matches which will be played in the Pittsburgh area.
Pitt began its NCAA mandated practices in early August at Ambrose Urbanic Field at the Petersen Sports Complex. It played its first and only exhibition match at Kentucky on August 16, falling 1-0 in a closely contested match.
Pitt returns nine starters and 11 letterwinners from a 7-10-2 team. In addition, Pitt adds a 12-member recruiting class.