Fort Myers, Fla. – The Florida Gulf Coast University women's basketball team has announced the 2008-09 schedule. Head Coach Karl Smesko and the Eagles, coming off a 22-win season and a WNIT berth, will play a solid non-conference schedule before diving into the 20-game conference slate.
"This is a very challenging schedule," said Smesko. "We are going to learn a great deal about ourselves, because this schedule will definitely be a test for us. Hopefully we will be ready."
The Eagles' home schedule consists of 15 regular-season games, including non-conference contests against Florida and UC-Santa Clara at Alico Arena.
The Eagles will not host any tournaments this season, after hosting two tournaments during the 06-07 season, but will participate in the UNC Greensboro Marriot Classic in Greensboro, N.C. The regular season begins with a home game vs. Florida, who defeated the Eagles 60-55 in the second round of the WNIT, on Friday, Nov. 14, before the Green and Blue heads to Tallahassee to take on the Florida State Seminoles on Sunday, Nov. 16.
The Eagles then return home to host UC-Santa Clara on Nov. 26, before heading to Greensboro, N.C., for the UNC Greensboro Marriot Classic on Nov. 28-Nov. 29. FGCU will face UNC Greensboro in game one and will take on Winston Salem State in their second game of the classic.
FGCU will then travel to DeLand, Fla. to take on A-Sun foe Stetson on Dec. 4 and will head back home to host Central Florida (Dec. 7) and Campbell (Dec. 13).
Before the Christmas holiday, the Eagles head north to Daytona, Fla. to take on Bethune Cookman. The Green and Blue will have 11 days off for the Christmas holiday before they return to the court to host Cornell, who is coming of a 20-9 season which included an Ivy League Championship and a NCAA Tournament automatic bid, on Dec. 30 to end the 2008 calendar year.
The Eagles begin 2009 and dive into conference play with back-to-back road games vs. Lipscomb (Jan. 3) and Belmont (Jan. 7). This season the Atlantic Sun Conference will go to a 20-game conference schedule. FGCU will face the other 10 members once at home and once on the road. The Eagles host defending A-Sun champion ETSU on January 8. Last season ETSU lost to Oklahoma State 85-73 in the first round of the NCAA tournament.
The Eagles wrap up the season with a home game against Johnson & Wales on Feb. 28.
The FGCU booster club will be hosting a “Sneak Peak/Pick-a-Seat Party” on October 23 where fans can get a first look at the men’s and women’s basketball team. Admission to the event is free. FGCU still has season ticket packages remaining, starting at $100.
For more season ticket information, please call (239) 590-7145 or visit www.fgcuathletics.com/tickets. For the most up-to-date schedule throughout the season, click the 'Schedule' link on the women's basketball page.