Missouri State women’s soccer coach Rob Brewer has completed the regular season slate for his team in 2012, he announced today. The Bears will play nine home games at Plaster Field with the nine remaining games on the road.
Missouri State will begin the 17th year of the program with back-to-back home games in mid-August. UALR and North Texas come to Springfield for games on August 17 and 19, respectively. After a stop at Fayetteville, Ark., to face the Razorbacks, the Bears will return to Plaster to face Nebraska-Omaha on August 24.
“We have a few new teams on the schedule and that should be exciting for us,” said Brewer. “It will be good to get that experience under our belt before we get too deep into the school year.”
MSU then sets out on a four-game road swing beginning in Bloomington, Ind., against the Indiana Hoosiers. The Bears will spend Labor Day weekend in Tulsa, Okla., facing the Tulsa Golden Hurricane and Oral Roberts Golden Eagles. A trip to Lawrence, Kan., wraps up the road trip as the Bears play 2011 NCAA Tournament participant Kansas on September 7.
“It’s always helpful to play the tough teams early in the year,” continued Brewer regarding the road games at Arkansas, Indiana and Kansas. “It gives you the opportunity to fix things before beginning conference play.”
The Bears return to Plaster Field on September 9 to open a three-match home stand against SIUE. Western Illinois and North Dakota State visit on September 14 and 16, respectively, to complete the nonconference home schedule.
Missouri State begins conference play on the road this season, playing at Drake on September 22. The final nonconference game will be played at UMKC on Monday, September 24.
“The conference schedule will be challenging,” stated Brewer. “While Creighton and Illinois State are always near the top of the league, everyone else was playing well towards the end of last season and will be improved this season. So everyone will be ready to get the season started.”
The Bears will alternate home and away conference games the remainder of the season. MSU will look to avenge last year’s season finale overtime loss at Evansville when the Purple Aces visit Plaster Field on September 30.
October begins with a trip to Cedar Falls, Iowa. The Bears will play UNI for the first time since the teams met in the State Farm/MVC Tournament semifinals, a game in which MSU prevailed in overtime. Creighton comes to town before the Bears head to Illinois State to play last year’s regular season and tournament champion Redbirds.
Missouri State will wrap up the regular season with Senior Night at Plaster Field against Indiana State. The last time the Sycamores played at Plaster, Grace Cross scored in the final minute of play to lift the Bears to a 1-0 win.
The 2012 State Farm MVC Tournament follows the regular season. The host school and location of the tournament will be announced at a later date.
MSU will play a single exhibition match before the regular season. The Bears will travel to Saint Louis on August 11 to play the Billikens.
Last year, the Bears finished 12-5-2, placing second in the Valley with a 4-1-1 record. Missouri State advanced to the MVC Tournament title game for the second-straight season. Besides winning the 150th match in school history, the Bears accomplished other first last season as well. MSU had a seven-game winning streak, an 11-match unbeaten streak and four-straight 1-0 shutout wins in 2011, all firsts in team history.