MUNCIE, Ind. – The Ball State soccer program, coming off a run to the Mid-American Conference Tournament championship game last season, has announced its schedule for the 2014 campaign.
The Cardinals will play 10 home games at the Briner Sports Complex, starting with an Aug. 16 exhibition contest against IUPUI. The regular-season opener comes the following week when the Cardinals welcome IPFW on Aug. 22.
The non-conference schedule is highlighted by a visit to Big Ten foe Purdue (Aug. 29) and trip to the Naval Academy (Sept. 12-14) to play in a tournament against Navy and Delaware.
"We have put together a competitive non-conference schedule with games against good regional opponents," Ball State head coach Craig Roberts said. "We also have an exciting trip to Navy and will take the opportunity to make that an educational experience for our team, like we have done in recent years on our trips to Hawaii and Colorado. All in all, we believe our early-season experiences will prepare us well for conference play."
The non-conference slate also includes home dates with Morehead State (Aug. 31) and Jacksonville State (Sept. 20) along with road contests at Green Bay (Aug. 24) and Valparaiso (Sept. 5).
Ball State will open its 11-game MAC schedule at home Sept. 26 against Bowling Green. The Cardinals will host Western Michigan on Oct. 17 in a rematch of last year's MAC Tournament championship game. The remainder of the league home games come against Central Michigan (Oct. 3), Toledo (Oct. 5), Northern Illinois (Oct. 19) and Miami University (Oct. 30).
The Cardinals will play conference road games at Eastern Michigan (Sept. 28), Ohio (Oct. 10), Kent State (Oct. 12), Buffalo (Oct. 24) and Akron (Oct. 26).
The top eight teams in the final conference standings will qualify for the MAC Tournament, which begins Nov. 2 with first-round games on campus sites. The semifinals and championship will be played at the site of the top remaining seed with the winner earning the league’s automatic berth into the NCAA tournament.
Ball State reached the MAC Tournament title game last year for the first time in program history as the Cardinals capped the 2013 season with their best record in six years at 11-7-4.
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