UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. – The Virginia women’s soccer team opens play in the 2009 NCAA Tournament Friday night when it meets St. John’s in a first round match. Game time at Jeffrey Field on the Penn State campus is slated for 5 p.m. and fans can follow the action via GameTracker and a webcast available at GoPSUSports.com.
The Cavaliers (9-5-5) are making their 16th consecutive NCAA Tournament appearance and their 22nd overall tournament appearance. Only North Carolina and Notre Dame have longer active consecutive NCAA Tournament streaks. Virginia has a 19-19-3 all-time record in the NCAA Tournament, including a 16-8-2 mark under head coach Steve Swanson.
Since the tournament expanded to 64 teams in 2001, this year marks just the third time that the Cavaliers have played the opening weekend away from Klöckner Stadium. In both previous years, Virginia won both first and second round games to advance to the round of 16. In 2002, the Cavaliers topped Dayton 3-2 and West Virginia 1-0 in Morgantown, W.Va. In 2006, Virginia defeated West Virginia 2-0 and Wake Forest 2-0 in Winston-Salem, N.C.
St. John’s (13-6-1) is making its first ever NCAA Tournament appearance. The game between the Cavaliers and Red Storm is also the first ever meeting between the schools.
The other first round game at Jeffrey Field on Friday is between the host Nittany Lions and Colgate. Friday’s winners will meet in the second round on Sunday at 1 p.m.