BALTIMORE, Md. – Head coach Stacey Eversley has announced her 2019 Goucher College field hockey schedule. The 17-game slate is highlighted by 10 home contests including three-straight games and five of the first seven at Beldon Field.
"We love playing at home," said Eversley. "We are excited to have so many home games this year. The fans are great and there is nothing like playing at home."
The Gophers look to build upon the 8-7 record from Eversley's first season when they open the season against St. Mary's (Md.) for the third-straight season on August 30 at home. It is the first time the squad has opened the year at home since 2017 and will face St. Mary's for the 23rd time in team history.
The team remains at home to welcome Transylvania (September 1) and Southern Virginia (September 7) to town for the first-ever meeting against both teams. Transylvania is located in Lexington, Kentucky and will be coming to the Old Line State to face Goucher and Hood in the first weekend of the season while Southern Virginia is in its inaugural season for field hockey in 2019.
"I believe all games prepare you for the next," said Eversley. "Our non-conference schedule should help us to learn how to play home and away as well as to just gel as a team. We are always trying to improve from game to game and the hope is that when we get to conference play we have prepared ourselves well."
After the match against Southern Virginia, the team will hit the road for two games in Virginia and start a string of four of the next five matchups against teams from the Old Dominion Athletic Conference (ODAC). The Gophers travel to Ferrum on September 8 and Randolph-Macon on September 14. After defeating Ferrum 2-1 last season, Goucher has won all three meetings in the all-time series while it will be the 14th meeting against Randolph-Macon and first since 2017 after last year's meeting was cancelled.
The team returns home, but stays in ODAC play against Virginia Wesleyan on September 18. It will be the second meeting in the series against Virginia Wesleyan and first since the 2015 when the Gophers took a 2-0 victory. Lebanon Valley will then come to town on September 21 with Goucher looking for its first win in three tries.
The squad heads back to Virginia and plays its final ODAC school when it travels to Eastern Mennonite University on September 24. Eastern Mennonite won the tilt last season 2-1 in the first match between the two teams since 1998 and the meeting in Harrisonburg, Virginia, will mark the eighth meeting in the all-time series.
For the second-straight season, the Baltimore-based program will open Landmark Conference play against Drew and will start circuit play at home for the first time since 2016. The team has won four straight against Drew to cut Drew's all-time series lead to 7-6-1.
"We need to to take one game at a time and to study what is working for us and what isn't," said Eversley. "We play in a competitive conference so understanding that anyone can win on any given day. We cannot wait for season to start!"
After the game against Drew, the Gophers will be on the road for three of their next four games and will start the month of October at Widener on October 1 and at Scranton on October 5. It will be the first contest against Widener since the 2013 season with Goucher holding a 4-3 edge in the all-time series while the team will face Scranton for the 14th time in team history.
Returning home for its first of four home games in the month of October, the Gophers host Hood on October 8. Goucher defeated Hood 8-0 last season to take a 15-6 advantage in the all-time series.
The team will travel to Juniata for the 13th meeting in the all-time series on October 12 before returning to Beldon Field for three of the final four games of the regular season.
Catholic (October 16) and Susquehanna (October 19) come to town to start the final stretch before the squad heads to Elizabethtown (October 26) and then wraps up the season at home against Moravian (November 2). It will be the 35th meeting in the all-time series against Catholic and 15th against Susquehanna. The Gophers defeated Elizabethtown 2-1 last season to end a 12-game losing streak to Elizabethtown and will be the 16th meeting in the all-time series. Goucher defeated Moravian 3-2 in overtime in 2018 for its fifth-straight win in the matchup to take a 7-5 edge in the all-time series.
Goucher looks to finish as one of the Top-4 teams in the standings to advance to the Landmark Conference postseason for the first time in program history. The semifinals are on November 6 and the championship match will take place on November 9.