FORT MYERS, Fla. - Atlantic Sun Conference Coach of the Year Jim Blankenship and the reigning Atlantic Sun regular season and tournament champion FGCU women’s soccer team enter the 2013 campaign as the preseason league favorites to repeat last year’s performance.
The Eagles return 14 players, including eight starters from a 2012 team, and usher in 10 newcomers this year. FGCU finished the 2012 season with a 14-4-3 record, and brought home the program’s second-consecutive A-Sun Tournament Championship. This season’s non-conference slate features four teams which finished in the RPI top 100 last year, and three opponents that advanced to the NCAA Tournament.
Leading the way for the Green and Blue will be two all-conference First Team selections; junior Shannen Wacker (Parker, Colo./Ponderosa HS) and sophomore Ally Kasun (Lancaster, P.A./Hempfield HS), who was also a member of the NSCAA Southeastern Region All-Second Team and the A-Sun All-Freshman Team. FGCU will also be looking forward to the leadership of the other three returning members of last season’s A-Sun All-Freshman squad Shea Rhoney (Lithia, Fla./Newsome HS), Brittany Brown (Rochester, N.Y./Greece Athena HS), and Emma Blackwell (Jenks, Okla./Jenks HS).
“We’re excited about the new challenges that lie in front of us this year,” Blankenship said. “I’m eager to get the season going and see how our group comes together throughout preseason.”
The Green and Blue, who have already began preseason practice, will face off in a pair of exhibition matches, hosting USF on Tuesday, Aug. 13 at 1 p.m., and FAU on Friday, Aug. 16 at 1 p.m. The regular season commences on Friday, Aug. 23, as FGCU visits the University of Florida. The Eagles will land back at the FGCU Soccer Complex Sunday, August 25 for their home opener against Albany at 1:00 p.m.
FGCU season tickets can be purchased in person at the Alico Arena ticket office or by phone at 239-590-7145. Tickets are also available at FGCUathletics.com/tickets. The FGCU ticket office is open from 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. Monday through Friday, and one hour prior to ticketed events. An adult season ticket is $30, while a youth (3-12 years) ticket is $15. Single game tickets can also be bought at $6 for adults and $3 for youth. Groups of 10+ can get in for $3 per person. FGCU students and faculty/staff get in free with their Eagle ID.
2013 FGCU Women’s Soccer Schedule
Aug. 13 – USF#, 1 p.m.
Aug. 16 – FAU#, 1 p.m.
Aug. 23 – at Florida, 7 p.m.
Aug. 25 – Albany, 1 p.m.
Aug. 30 – Davidson^, 7 p.m.
Sept. 1 – Mississippi State, 1 p.m.
Sept. 6 – at FIU, 5 p.m.
Sept. 13 – vs. Portland State%, 11 p.m.
Sept. 15 – vs. Idaho State%, 9 p.m.
Sept. 20 – Memphis, 7 p.m.
Sept. 22 – at UCF, 6 p.m.
Sept. 27 – Jacksonville*, 7 p.m.
Sept. 29 – UNF*, 1 p.m.
Oct. 4 – at Northern Kentucky* , 7 p.m.
Oct. 6 – at Lipscomb*, 1 p.m.
Oct. 11 – ETSU*, 7 p.m.
Oct. 13 – USC Upstate*, 1 p.m.
Oct. 18 – at Mercer*, 7 p.m.
Oct. 20 – at Kennesaw State, 1 p.m.
Oct. 26 – at Stetson*, 5 p.m.
Nov. 2-10 – Atlantic Sun Tournament (Location TBA)
*Atlantic Sun Conference game
^Embassy Suites Classic
%University of Hawaii Tournament