Springfield, Mass. - November 11, 2013 - For the fourth-straight season, the Springfield College women's soccer team will be competing in the NCAA Division III Women's Soccer Championship this weekend. The Pride will take on Amherst College on Saturday in a contest hosted by Messiah College in Grantham, Pa.
According to the National Soccer Coaches Athletic Association national poll this week, the Pride ranks 25th in the country, tied with Saint Benedict. Springfield is ranked fifth in New England, while Amherst is ranked 10th in the region.
The Pride will take a six hour bus ride, traveling 331 miles to play an Amherst team that is located just 25 miles from Springfield. Of the 32 first-round match ups, this is the only one where the two teams played each other during the regular season. Amherst and Springfield squared off in mid-September with the Jeffs taking the 4-0 win.
Springfield, which owns a 13-4-3 record, captured an automatic berth into the national tournament after advancing past MIT in penalty kicks on Sunday in the New England Women's and Men's Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) Championship match. With the victory, Springfield is in the NCAA Championship for the sixth time in the last seven years. The Pride has been playing some of its best soccer late in the season and hasn't lost since October 12 at Wheaton, going 6-0-3 in the last nine games.
Amherst will be making its third-straight NCAA Div. III tournament appearance, owning a record of 9-3-3 record. The Jeffs earned an at-large bid into the tournament after falling to Trinity, 2-1 in NESCAC quarterfinal action on Saturday.
The other game in the four-team bracket at Messiah features the host Falcons (18-2-1) versus Lasell (16-3-1). Messiah enters this year's tournament via an automatic qualifier after winning its seventh-straight Commonwealth Conference Championship with a 1-0 win over Stevenson University. Lasell also enters via an automatic qualifier after being Suffolk 6-1 in the Great Northeast Athletic Conference.
The winners of Saturday's contests will play on Sunday, Nov. 17.