Eight Home Matches Highlight 2012 Schedule
June 7, 2012
EASTON, Pa. - Eight matches on the pitch at Mike Bourger '44 Field at Oaks Stadium highlight the 2012 Lafayette men's soccer schedule as announced today by Head Coach Dennis Bohn. The Leopards return three All-Patriot League talents as they aim for their 12th-consecutive winning season.
GoLeopards.com will once again provide live video coverage of all Patriot League home matches. The complete GoLeopards.com fall broadcast schedule will be announced this summer.
Lafayette begins its campaign on the road against the only three opponents on the schedule that were not on the 2011 slate. The season kicks off at Fairleigh Dickinson on Aug. 28 before matches at Penn on Aug. 31 and Quinnipiac on Sept. 2. The Leopards last challenged the Quakers in 2010 and have never played the Knights or the Bobcats during Bohn's 11-year tenure.
Cornell comes to College Hill for the Leopards' home opener on Sept. 7. The Friday night match marks the fifth straight season in which Lafayette has met Big Red. The clubs played to a 1-1 stalemate last season in Ithaca.
Lafayette defeated La Salle, Drexel and Mount St. Mary's by identical 1-0 tallies last season, and the Leopards look to post another victory against each club this fall. The Leopards play at La Salle on Sept. 9, host the Dragons from Drexel on Sept. 12 and - in their final tune-up prior to Patriot League action - visit the Mount on Sept. 15.
A second-straight trip to Maryland begins the league slate as Lafayette treks to Annapolis, where it has not lost since 1996 (6-0-1), to challenge Navy on Sept. 22.
The Leopards first homestand begins on Sept. 25 with a visit from the defending Colonial Athletic Association champion, Delaware. Last season, visiting Lafayette dispatched the Fightin' Blue Hens, who later advanced to the NCAA Tournament Second Round, by a score of 3-0. The week-long stretch at Oaks Stadium wraps up on Sept. 29 against league foe Holy Cross, which is winless against the Leopards in the last 11 meetings dating back to 2003.
An Oct. 2 outing at Rider is the precursor for one of the biggest matches of any season - an Oct. 6 trip to Bethlehem to challenge historic rival Lehigh. The Leopards claimed a 1-0 victory from the Mountain Hawks last season in Easton, marking the third-straight 1-0 decision in a series that dates back to 1913. Lafayette concludes a three-game road stint at Villanova on Oct. 9. The Wildcats and Leopards battled to a scoreless draw in Easton last season.
For the last six campaigns, 90 minutes has not been enough to settle the annual Patriot League meeting between Lafayette and American. On Oct. 13 at Oaks Stadium, the Leopards look to snap a streak of three-straight overtime losses to the Eagles, who will enter the match as the defending regular season champions of the league.
The non-league slate concludes on Oct. 16 with a visit from NJIT. Lafayette hung a 3-1 victory on the Highlanders last season on College Hill.
Colgate snuck by the Leopards, 1-0, with a goal in the 110th minute last fall and went on to win the Patriot League Tournament. Lafayette has a chance to avenge that defeat on Oct. 20 in Hamilton to conclude the road portion of the regular-season schedule.
The Patriot League docket wraps up at Oaks Stadium against Army and Bucknell on Oct. 27 and Nov. 3, respectively. The Leopards and Black Knights played to a scoreless draw in the aftermath of an October blizzard last season in West Point, while Lafayette downed host Bucknell, 2-0, in a must-win match to conclude the 2011 campaign.
The top four teams in the Patriot League advance to the 2012 Patriot League Championship, which is hosted by the regular season champion on Nov. 9 and 11.
The 2012 Leopards return 18 letterwinners and welcome nine freshmen to a squad that went 9-5-4 last season - boasting the best RPI and second-highest win total in the Patriot League - and ranked fourth in the nation in team defense with a 0.47 goals-against average. First Team All-Patriot League and Second Team NSCAA All-Mid-Atlantic Region midfielder Sean Peckham '13, Second Team All-Patriot League and Third Team All-Region midfielder Kyle Scharfenberg '13 and Second Team All-Patriot League back Julian Plummer '15 highlight the list of returners.