July 10, 2014
2014 Army Volleyball Schedule
WEST POINT, N.Y. - Head Volleyball Coach Alma Kovaci announced Army's 2014 schedule on Thursday as the Black Knights look to take the next step in their quest for a Patriot League Championship and an automatic berth in the NCAA Tournament. Twelve home contests and the 2014 Black Knights Invitational highlight the docket, in addition to matches against five first-time opponents.
"We really wanted to challenge ourselves to play as much as possible prior to the Patriot League season," Kovaci said. "With 12 matches before conference play, we have a great opportunity to become comfortable with each other on the court and how we react in high-pressure situations. I am extremely excited for the season after seeing how the team progressed throughout the spring and am anxious for the addition of our freshman class. Like always, our goal is to continue to build a successful program and win a Patriot League championship."
Army is set to play a total of 29 regular-season matches, including 16 Patriot League competitions, and will participate in three tournaments. The Black Knights will take the court against opponents from nine different conferences, with two from the America East, West Coast Conference and the Big West. The Black Knights will also face one squad from the Big East, Northeast Conference, Colonial Athletic Association, Big South, Metro-Atlantic Athletic Conference and Horizon League.
For the first time in Kovaci's eight seasons at West Point, Army opens its schedule on the road at the Bryant Invitational on Aug. 29-30. The Black Knights kick off the campaign with a doubleheader against St. John's and tournament host, Bryant, on Aug. 29, prior to a pair of matches against Towson and UMass-Lowell the following day.
The team begins its 2014 home slate on Sept. 2 versus Santa Clara in the first-ever meeting between the two sides. The home opener at Gillis Field House is set for 7 p.m.
A run of matches against new opponents continues at the Long Beach State Mizuno Invitational (Sept. 5-6) against Long Beach State, San Francisco and Campbell. The Southern California journey wraps up on Sept. 7 when the Black Knights challenge UC Irvine, before the five-match road trip ends with Army's annual meeting against Marist three days later. The Black Knights are 33-2 all-time and have won 10 in a row against the Red Foxes.
Army entertains Holy Cross, Binghamton and Oakland in the 2014 Black Knight Invitational on the weekend of Sept. 13-14, while also opening Patriot League play against the Crusaders to start the tournament at 11 a.m. Saturday. Army is 4-0 in its history versus Binghamton and was triumphant in its lone meeting with Oakland in 1986.
Road matches at Bucknell (Sept 19.), Lehigh (Sept. 20), Navy (Oct. 10) and Lafayette (Oct. 11) surround a three-match homestand against Colgate (Sept. 27), Loyola Maryland (Oct. 4) and American (Oct. 5). The Black Knights will look to capture their 13th straight "Star" win and ninth consecutive victory over the Midshipmen. Army holds a 43-10 lead in the Navy series, with wins in 15 of the previous 16 decisions.
The final non-league tilt of the year comes on Oct. 15 when the Black Knights host NJIT at 7 p.m. The event is sandwiched in the middle of Patriot League games and will provide an opportunity for Kovaci's squad to prepare for the stretch run.
Conference matches resume on Oct. 18 when Army clashes with Holy Cross in Worcester, Mass., before returning home for back-to-back meetings with Lehigh (Oct. 24) and Bucknell (Oct. 25).
The final regular season road trip pits the Black Knights against Colgate on Oct. 31, prior to a trip south to Loyola Maryland (Nov. 7) and defending Patriot League champion American the following day.
Army rounds out the schedule on Nov. 14-15 by hosting Lafayette and Navy, respectively. Both matches are lined up to begin at 7 p.m.
The 2014 Patriot League Tournament, which features the top four teams in the regular-season standings, is set for Nov. 22-23 at the site of the highest seed. Army leads all Patriot League teams with 21 appearances in the postseason and will attempt to match the conference record of consecutive tournament trips (Bucknell, 16) in 2014.
The Black Knights return eight players from last season's squad and boast a recruiting class ranked in the top 30 nationally.
All home matches are played at Gillis Field House and are free admission. For real-time score and news updates, follow @Army_Volleyball on Twitter or like the Black Knights on Facebook.