WWU Women's Soccer to Host NCAA West Regional at Harrington Field on Saturday
Receiving the No.1 seed, the Western Washington University women's soccer team will host a sub-regional and earn a first-round bye for the 2014 NCAA Division II Championship Tournament, the field being announced on Monday, Nov. 10.
The Vikings will meet the winner of an opening-round game of the West Regional on Saturday, Nov. 15, at 1 p.m. at Harrington Field on the WWU campus.
The first-round contest between No. 4 seed Cal State Stanislaus (13-4-1) and No.5 seed Seattle Pacific (12-4-3) takes place on Thursday, Nov. 13, at 7 p.m.
In the other half of the regional, No. 3 seed Cal Poly Pomona (13-5-1) and No.6 seed Point Loma (12-3-1) face off in an opening-round game, the winner advancing to meet No.2 seed and host Cal State L.A. (16-1-3) at Los Angeles.
“It’s exciting news, the players have worked so hard this season and getting to host a game at our new campus facility is a huge advantage,” said WWU head coach Travis Connell (12th year, 157-61-24).
The Vikings, 16-0-3 overall and ranked No.12 in last week's National Soccer Coaches Association of America/NCAA II Top 25, are making their third straight post-season appearance and sixth overall as a NCAA member. Last year, they won the West Regional and advanced to the national semifinals. In 2012, WWU lost in the regional final.
WWU, 8-0-1 at home this season, earned a regional berth after winning a third consecutive Great Northwest Athletic Conference regular-season title (11-0-3) and reaching the championship game at last week's GNAC Tournament. The Vikings lost 5-4 in a penalty kick tiebreaker to Seattle Pacific after tying 1-1 in overtime in the championship game. In an opening-round game, they defeated Central Washington, 2-1.
“We’re in a good place,” Connell said. “We’ve got a little chip on our shoulder after losing in penalties in the conference championship game. Something that you think about when you go unbeaten in a season is how to keep your team motivated, so losing Saturday on penalties got everyone’s attention right back to where it needs to be, which is working hard and with something to prove every time you step on the field.”