DURHAM, N.H. – Robin Balducci, 18th-year head coach of the University of New Hampshire field hockey team, has announced the 2009 schedule for her UNH team.
In addition to five America East league games, the Wildcats will battle four Ivy League teams as well as two ACC teams, a pair of Big East squads and a member of the Big 10. Of the 18 games, five are home at Memorial Field and three are at a neutral site.
The 2009 season opens Aug. 30 at home against Syracuse University, a team that advanced to the semifinals of last year’s NCAA tournament and ended the year ranked third in the national polls.
New Hampshire begins September with a pair of games in the Ocean State against Brown University (Sept. 4) and Providence College (Sept. 6). The ‘Cats then make the first of two trips to Burlington, Vt. to play Cal-Davis and Penn at UVM’s Sheraton Classic on Sept. 12-13.
UNH continues play against another Ivy League team, Harvard, on Sept. 16 and returns home to face Holy Cross on the 19th. The Wildcats then hit the road again to battle Davidson and Duke, a 2008 NCAA quarterfinalist that was ranked eighth in the country.
League play begins Oct. 3 at home against interstate rival Maine, and the ‘Cats travel to play Northeastern and Dartmouth before resuming America East action at Vermont. The next day, UNH travels to Cambridge, Mass. (Harvard) to play Michigan.
New Hampshire plays a fifth consecutive out-of-town game against Boston University on Oct. 17 and then plays host to Boston College – a team that ended ’08 at No. 15 in the rankings – on the 18th.
The Wildcats will hold Senior Day on Oct. 24 against Fairfield University and conclude the regular season the following weekend at Albany, the defending America East champion who defeated UNH, 2-1, in last year’s league title game.
UNH finished as runner-up in both the America East regular season standings and tournament in 2008.