SEATTLE – Washington women’s soccer has announced the 2014 schedule for the spring season. The schedule is made up of five games against local collegiate and professional teams that will test the Huskies and prepare them for the fall of 2014.
“We are excited about the quality and the spacing of the games we are scheduled to play this off season,” said head coach Lesle Gallimore. “Our five dates of competition are a vital part in preparing our team for competition in August and preparation that will help us vie for a Pac-12 title as well as make the best NCAA tournament run possible.”
Washington opens the spring at Seattle University’s Championship Field on March 13, at 7 p.m. The Redhawks were an NCAA Tournament team a year ago, although Washington had perhaps its best game of the season, defeating Seattle U., 5-0, during the regular season.
“Our early match before spring break versus Seattle U. gives our players incentive to train and compete at a high level this winter and go into the break with a full match under their belts,” said Gallimore. “We had our best goal scoring output versus Seattle U. this fall, but Seattle U then proceeded to win 15 games in a row before losing to Portland in the first round of the NCAA Tournament.”
After returning from Spring Break, the Dawgs will host the Seattle Reign of the National Women’s Soccer League on April 3, at 7 p.m. The Reign will be entering their second season in the NWSL and will provide a stiff test for Washington.
“We are extremely excited about playing a second-year NWSL team, the Seattle Reign FC, as one of their preseason contests. It will be a great challenge for our team to compete against these professionals, who field two of our former players in Kate Deines and Hope Solo. Many of our players aspire to play in the league and there is no greater way to evaluate where you stand that to go head to head with these great players.”
Next up, Washington will renew the rivalry with Portland when it heads to Merlo Field on April 13. Portland defeated Washington during the regular season and went on to advance to the second round of the NCAA Tournament.
“Portland is always a formidable opponent and tough to break down,” said Gallimore. “We weren’t pleased with how we competed against them this fall and we plan on having a better effort and showing down at Merlo Field in April. They are a team that challenges you in every facet and it’s terrific to get that competition.”
The Dawgs final collegiate competitor will be Western Washington, an elite D-II program.
“We’ll also play D-II powerhouse Western Washington who was played in the National Semi-Finals this year and have been extremely strong the last several season,” said Gallimore. “Western is always a physical test for our team in that they tend to field strong, direct and hardworking teams.”
Finally, Washington will wrap up the spring against the Seattle Sounders women. Last year, Washington tied 1-1 with the Sounders women before several Dawgs went on to play for the opponent for the later part of the season.
“We’ll end the off-season slate with a match versus the Sounders women at Starfire in Tukwila,” said Gallimore. “This has been a fun and competitive match over the last several years. Their roster isn’t set yet, but we’ll most likely be facing several of our former players, many players that are on trial for the W-League season as well as top level current and former collegians.”
“We’re looking forward to taking the field together again at improving as a team. We fell short of our standards and expectations last season, and we’re eager to move forward with this returning group.”
Full 2014 Spring Schedule
March 13, UW at Seattle U. – 7 p.m.
April 3, Seattle Reign at UW – 7 p.m.
April 13, UW at Portland – TBA
April 17, WWU at UW – 7 p.m.
April 25, UW vs. Seattle Sounders – 7: 30 p.m. at Starfire