Rematch: Women’s Soccer Draws Virginia in NCAA Tourney Opener

The Knights will hit the road once again, but this time as champions in the NCAA Tournament.

Fresh off their scintillating run to the Northeast Conference women’s soccer championship on Sunday afternoon, the Knights, clad in practice gear topped with new gray “NEC” t-shirts, gathered in the Rutherford Room in the basement of the SUB Monday to watch the NCAA tournament selection filling the 64-team bracket that will play 32 first-round matches at campus sites across the country.

Head coach Eric Tepee and staff joined the team in cheering when Virginia was announced as FDU’s first-round opponent in the tournament. The teams, which met earlier this season in a 5-0 loss for FDU, will play Friday at 4:30 p.m. in Charlottesville, Va.

The Cavs are making their 29th consecutive trip to the NCAA tourney and come in seeded No. 3. Virginia is 13-3-3 and is coming off a 2-1 quarterfinals loss to Duke in the ACC tournament quarterfinals on Oct. 30. FDU is 8-10-3.

The squads played in Virginia in FDU’s fourth match before the start of conference play.

That game was the start of a change for the Knights, “They found themselves,” Tepee said as he conferred with his staff. Tepee is in his eighth year as head coach and is leading the program in a second trip to the NCAA tournament. The Knights fell to Rutgers, 1-0, in their first tourney appearance in 2015, the last time FDU wore the NEC crown.

Student tickets cost $5 for the match, according to the Virginia athletics website.

The Knights react to hearing Virginia named as their first-round opponent in the NCAA Women’s Soccer Tournament Monday. FDU will make the 7-hour trip to Charlottesville, repeating the journey they took in late August when they lost 5-0 to the Cavaliers in a non-conference game.

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