NEW YORK - Columbia men's soccer head coach Kevin Anderson has revealed the team schedule for the 2012 season. Columbia will face seven teams that advanced to the 2011 NCAA Tournament and five conference champions. On Friday, Aug. 31, the Lions will start the season at home against 2011 MAAC Tournament Champion Fairfield at 7 p.m. in Columbia Soccer Stadium.
"The 2012 season sees us coming off of the most successful campaign the program has had in the last decade. This statement holds true for the last two seasons of play and it is our expectation to repeat this once again..."the third time's a charm". The 2012 season will challenge the depth and quality of our roster while creating the opportunity for us to be successful in gaining post season play to the NCAA tournament, whether that be through our automatic bid as conference champions or the at large bid selection. It's very simple, every second of ever game counts! When constructing these opportunities it will be vital to stay focused on each particular game, from scouting reports and video analysis of opponents, to team tactical presentation and implementation but most important that our squad embraces the depth of our group to maximize our strength, "THE LOCKER ROOM" which gives us every platform for success."
For the next match, the team will hit the road to take on Sacred Heart on Sunday, Sept. 6 to begin a three game week. On Wednesday, Sept. 5 Columbia returns home to face local rival Manhattan at 7 p.m. followed by a trip to Monmouth on Saturday, Sept. 8 to face the 2011 NEC Tournament Champions. The Monmouth Hawks finished 16-6-0 last season and played their way to the second round of the NCAA Tournament.
The Lions will return home to host a pair of matches starting with its third MAAC opponent, the St. Peter's Peacocks, on Wednesday, Sept. 12. The 2011 CAA Tournament Champions Delaware are up next for the Lions on Saturday, Sept. 15.
On Wednesday, Sept. 19 the Lions will begin the first of five straight road matches in the Bronx, N.Y. at Fordham. After a local match-up with the Rams, Columbia will continue its New York City circuit playing at Long Island University on Saturday, Sept. 22 and at Big East Tournament champion St. John's on Tuesday, Sept. 25. To cap the month, the team will begin Ivy League play at last year's co-champion Brown. The Bears went 4-1-2 in the Ivy League and posted wins in the first and second round of the NCAA Tournament.
The Lions will end the five game road swing at Penn on Oct. 6. On Tuesday, Oct. 9 will open a three home game stretch with Big East opponent Providence at 7 p.m. Columbia will return to Ivy League play as they host Princeton on Saturday, Oct. 13 at 4 p.m. Homecoming Day looks to be a very special match as the Lions host Ivy League co-champion Dartmouth on Saturday, Oct. 20 at 7 p.m. The Big Green shared the league title with Brown before falling to Providence in the first round of the NCAA Tournament.
A trip to Yale to face the Bulldogs on Oct. 27 is up next for the Lions before they return to New York City to host Atlantic Soccer Conference Champion Adelphi on Oct. 30 at 7 p.m.
Columbia will finish the regular season with two Ivy League matches against Harvard and Cornell. The Lions will head to Boston, Mass. on Nov. 3 to face the Crimson at 4 p.m. The final home match of the season will be a senior night battle against Cornell on Saturday, Nov. 10 at 7 p.m.