TUESDAY, JULY 01, 2014
Men’s Soccer to Host Eight Matches at Southern Oak Stadium
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – First-year Head Coach Mauricio Ruiz of the Jacksonville University men’s soccer team revealed his inaugural slate of matches in charge of the Dolphins on Tuesday with the release of the 2014 schedule. JU will host an exhibition and eight regular season matches at Southern Oak Stadium as the Dolphins seek their first NCAA Tournament berth since 2008.
An exhibition match at UCF – where Ruiz has been an associate head coach for the past six seasons – will signal the unofficial start of the season on August 17. The Dolphins return home for an Intersquad Scrimmage on August 20, before hosting an exhibition against Thomas University on August 23 in a trio of matches designed to give the Dolphins a chance to build some fluidity heading into the regular season.
The season officially opens on August 29 as Jacksonville hosts NJIT as part of the Mike Gibbs Memorial Tournament. The clash is set for 8 pm at Southern Oak Stadium and will be the back-end of a doubleheader with the women’s team. On August 31, JU closes out the tournament against FAU at 3 pm, once again following a women’s match.
Jacksonville will spend the first weekend of September in North Carolina, first taking on Davidson on September 5 in a rematch of last season’s epic double-overtime victory for JU. On September 7, the Dolphins complete the trip by taking on UNC Asheville. Another non-conference tournament awaits on September 12 and 14 as JU takes part in the UAB Soccer for a Cure Classic. The Dolphins will meet Dayton first, followed by Vermont to close out the tournament.
Returning home, Jacksonville hosts the first of four straight matches at Southern Oak Stadium on September 19 when Wofford makes the trip south. On September 23, JU hosts a former conference rival as Campbell ventures to town. A visit from Georgia Southern on September 27 brings the month to a close and marks the final match before the beginning of Atlantic Sun play.
The home stand comes to an end on October 1 when Jacksonville begins the A-Sun season against Florida Gulf Coast. Three days later, the Dolphins will go across town for their River City Rumble matchup with North Florida on October 4. Dipping back into non-conference play for a midweek game, the team embarks to Appalachian State on October 8.
After a weekend off, Jacksonville welcomes in Northern Kentucky on October 18. The Dolphins then begin a three-game road trip with visits to Georgia State (October 21), Stetson (October 25) and USC Upstate (November 1). Closing out the regular season is a Senior Day match at Southern Oak Stadium against Lipscomb on November 8.
The Atlantic Sun Tournament will be held on the campus of the No. 1 seed. First round matches will be played on November 12, with the semifinals set for November 14 and the championship on November 16.
Jacksonville is expected to welcome back 19 letterwinners from a year ago, including All-Atlantic Sun Second Team recipient Matheus Saroli and All-Atlantic Sun Freshman Team member Jack Burns. Last season, the Dolphins advanced to the A-Sun Tournament as the sixth seed with a conference mark of 2-4-2.