From the HCC sports desk:
BEL AIR, Md.—The Harford women’s soccer team will travel to Goldey-Beacom and Goucher on August 21 and 24 for preseason scrimmages before kicking off the 2009 season on August 29 as the Fighting Owls host Region XIX runner-up Morris at 1:00 p.m. at Harford Stadium, head coach Jason Muffoletto and assistant coach Dana Casey announced recently.
“Every year we look forward to our preseason scrimmages because it gives us the opportunity to compete against four-year schools and if we play well it gives a boost to the start of our season,” Casey said.
The contest against the Titans will mark the beginning of a four-game homestand and six-game span which features four nationally-competitive teams. The Owls will begin the Maryland Junior College Athletic Conference season with a rematch of last year’s Region XX championship game against defending region and district champion Anne Arundel on September 1. The 2008 regional championship ended in a 0-0 tie and was decided by penalty kicks, 4-3 in favor of the Pioneers, who would go on to win the district title and finish sixth in the national tournament.
The homestand will continue with non-conference match-ups against Division-III Brookdale and D-III Region XV champion and district runner-up Nassau on September 2 and 4 before Harford travels to CCBC-Essex for a September 9 game, only to return home on September 12 to face Region X champion and district runner-up (to Anne Arundel) Cape Fear.
“This season we have a tight game schedule with multiple back-to-back games to prepare us for tournament play at the end of the season,” Casey said. “We will meet all MDJUCO teams only once this season and our non-conference games are against teams that traditionally have strong women’s soccer pograms.”
A series of five straight games on the road begins on September 14 as the Owls take on another Region XIX opponent in Burlington before traveling to Cecil and Frederick for MDJUCO conference games on September 16 and 22. Harford will wrap up its road trip with a September 26 match against the club team from Mary Washington University before traveling to Region X runner-up Louisburg on September 27.
Two MDJUCO conference games against CCBC-Catonsville (Sept. 29) and College of Southern Maryland (Oct. 6) will bring the Owls into October before beginning another four-game stretch with three top-tier teams. After facing the Region XIX runner-up to start the season, the Owls will battle the Region XIX champion and district runner-up in Mercer (Oct. 9) before dueling MDJUCO defending regular season champion, D-III Region XX champion and district semifinalist Montgomery College-Rockville (Oct. 13), with both matches being played on the road.
Harford will return home on October 17 to face D-III Gloucester before hosting the MDJUCO regular season runner-up and D-III Region XX runner-up Howard on October 20 before wrapping up the regular season at Prince George’s on October 24.
The Region XX tournament is slated to begin on October 27 with the play-in round, while the semifinals and championship final will be held on October 29 and 31 and will be hosted by Harford along with the men’s soccer region tournament.
The region winner will advance to the district championship, at a site which is still to be announced, and that winner will continue on to the NJCAA National Tournament from Nov. 19-22 in Tyler, Texas.