MARQUETTE, Mich.— Northern Michigan University Men's Soccer announced their 2018 schedule which will begin with a non-conference home match against Mercyhurst University on August 30. The 16-match regular season will include nine home contests and seven road matchups.
"A season ago, we had the fourth most difficult strength of schedule in the region," head coach David Poggi said of the team's schedule. "It is not easy to predict future results, but I feel this slate of games will prepare our team for postseason play and an opportunity to advance to the NCAA Tournament."
The Wildcats will open September with their first road game of the season when they travel to the University of Southern Indiana on the September 2. NMU then returns to Marquette for another non-conference tune-up when they play host to Quincy University on September 9. The first weekend of Great lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference action will be September 14 and 16 when the Wildcats host Davenport University and Purdue-University Northwest.
In October, NMU will begin the month will four contests in Marquette to wrap-up the home schedule. They will take on Northwood University October 3, the University of Wisconsin-Parkside October 5, Saginaw Valley State University October 12, and Ashland University on October 14. The Ashland contest will be the final home match of the regular season, with the team's seniors being honored prior to the start.
"This will be a special year for our program for many reasons," Poggi added. "It will be the program's first graduating class and we have experience in postseason play. That senior group means so much to this program and one of our goals is to continue the successes they have helped build."
NMU enters 2018 with third-year head coach David Poggi at the helm. Poggi guided the Wildcats to a 6-11-2 overall record and the program's first-ever postseason victory in the GLIAC Tournament in 2017. Senior forward-to-be Sam Popp (Northville, Michigan) is the top-returning point scorer for a team that had no seniors. Popp netted six goals and added three assists for 15 points as a junior. In goal, junior goalkeeper-to-be Filippo Torelli (Parma, Italy) made 18 starts last season earning a 1.35 goals against average.