HAMDEN, Conn. – The Quinnipiac University men's lacrosse team has 13 games on its regular season schedule for the 2012 season. The spring slate includes a marquee match-up against 2011 NCAA Tournament contender, Hartford, and three games against opponents that finished top-25 in last year's national poll.
Now in his 11th season at the helm, head coach Eric Fekete was pleased with the Bobcats' fall season practices and workouts. He sees the spring schedule as a challenge, but is optimistic that his team can return to the Northeast Conference Championship for a second consecutive year.
"I look forward to the 2012 season," said Coach Fekete. "We face a unique year with the arrival of 19 freshmen on campus and the graduation of so many key contributors from 2011. The future is very bright and what we lose in experience, we will have to recover with a strong work ethic and good pregame preparation."
Six of the 13 contests will be at the Quinnipiac University Turf Field, home of the men's lacrosse program. QU's NEC matches are split between three on the road and two at home.
The opening game will feature strong opposition as the Bobcats play host to Brown University on Sunday, Feb. 26 at 12 p.m. The Bears narrowly missed a bid to the Ivy League Tournament last season, finishing the campaign with a 6-8 mark.
"Brown is one if the strongest programs in the country, commented Coach Fekete. "They are a great regional rival and always bring a strong team out on opening day. We always look forward to starting the season with a great battle between two of New England's premier programs."
On March 3, the Bobcats will then head out west to Falcon Stadium in Colorado Springs, Colo. to take on Air Force at 1 p.m. (Eastern Time). QU returns home after the game, leaving just two full days to prepare for its next contest. The Bobcats welcome Fairfield University on Wed., March 7 for a 3 p.m. start, followed by another game at the QU Turf Field against Detroit Mercy on Sat., March 10 at 1 p.m.
Following two games on the road at St. Joseph's (March 13) and Hartford (March 17), the Bobcats return home for a non-conference showdown against Binghamton on Sat., March 24. Game time with the Bearcats is set for 1 p.m.
Northeast Conference action will be next for the Bobcats, as QU opens competition with a rematch of the 2011 NEC finals. The squad squares off against Mount St. Mary's on Sat., March 31 in Emmitsburg, Md. Last year's regular-season showdown between the two teams proved to be the difference-maker in the NEC standings. Each team carried a 4-1 mark into the post season, leaving the head-to-head result to determine the No. 1 seed.
The Bobcats continue conference play at home against Wagner on Sat., April 7 at the QU Turf Field. QU then heads out eastward to Boston, Mass. to take on Harvard, who was ranked 18th in most of the preseason polls, (April 10) and returns home for Bryant on Sat., April 14 for a 1 p.m. start. The Bobcats wrap up the regular season on the road at Robert Morris on April 21 and Sacred Heart on April 30. Both games are slated for 1 p.m.
The top four teams of the six-school league will earn a spot in the NEC Tournament. The semifinals are scheduled for Fri., May 4 with the finals to occur on Sun., May 6. The highest seed will host the championship.
Contact: Tony Distasio; Ardistasio@quinnipiac.edu