Thursday, August 30, 2012
On Friday, August 31, the Rider University men's soccer team will play its season opener and the Rider field hockey team will play its home opener on the Ben Cohen Field.
The two-time defending Northeast Conference Champion field hockey team will host Villanova at 4pm.
The men's soccer team, which won a Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference playoff game last year for the first time in four years, will host Monmouth at 7pm.
"It's great that we got Monmouth onto the schedule this year," said second year head coach Charlie Inverso, who compiled a Hall of Fame career at Mercer County Community College with a record of 434-46-14 before coming to Rider last year. "They are always the class of the Northeast Conference and a fixture in the NCAA tournament."
Rider last played Monmouth during the 2008 season, losing 2-0 in West Long Branch to the third ranked team in the Region. Last season the Hawks advanced to the second round of the NCAA tournament, losing 2-1 to UConn to finish the season 14-6-2. Rider last defeated the Hawks in 1998. Rider is 6-12-2 in the 20 meetings with Monmouth.
The Broncs began the 2012 field hockey season with a loss at Drexel, but over the years have enjoyed quite a home field advantage. Rider has won its last 17 home games, 29 of the last 30 and 64 of the last 82 home games (.780).
"This year's schedule is going to be extremely challenging," said Rider head coach Lori Hussong, who is in her 13th season at Rider. "This difficult slate of games should prepare us well for conference play."
Villanova (2-0) began the 2012 field hockey season by winning the Colonial Classic, defeating host Robert Morris and Central Michigan. Last year Rider defeated the Wildcats 2-1 and owns a 7-6-1 advantage in the series history.
Monmouth began the soccer season 2-0 with victories over Towson and Providence.
As always, both the field hockey and the men's soccer contests will be video streamed on Bronc Vision and live stats will be available via GameWatcher.