Field hockey announces 2015 schedule

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. -- Head coach Charlene Morett announced yet another challenging schedule for the Penn State field hockey team, as the Nittany Lions are slated to take on seven top-20 teams and four NCAA tournament teams from last season.

Entering her 29th season guiding the Nittany Lions, Morett will be guiding one of the youngest and most inexperienced teams of her tenure. Nine senior starters departed following the 2014 season, but 11 talented newcomers will join the Blue and White for the upcoming year. The team’s youthfulness did not factor into the upcoming schedule though, as its degree of difficulty is remains consistent with past seasons.

The 2015 schedule will begin on the road in Virginia, as the Lions will take on Old Dominion Friday, Aug. 28 and Virginia Sunday, Aug. 30. Both perennial powers finished in the Top 20 of the final 2014 coaches’ poll.

Seven of the 17 regular season games will be played at home at the Penn State Field Hockey Complex, where the Lions went 9-1 last season. The home slate opens Friday, Sept. 4 at 6 p.m. against Temple. After hitting the road again to play two more in-state foes (Bucknell, Sept 6 and Lock Haven, Sept. 8), California will visit Penn State on Friday, Sept. 11 as part of an east coast swing.

The Big Ten schedule begins the following weekend at Michigan (Sept. 18) in Ann Arbor. The Nittany Lions will also play 2014 NCAA participant Kent State the following day in a neutral site contest at Michigan.

The Blue and White will return to Big Ten play and the Penn State Field Hockey Complex the following weekend for the longest homestretch of the season, hosting Michigan State (Sept. 25) and Ohio State (Sept. 27). PSU will then conclude the non-conference slate the next weekend, hosting Quinnipiac (Oct. 2), a team guided by field hockey alum Becca Main (’94), before traveling to Princeton, a 2014 NCAA tournament team, Sunday, Oct. 4.

Defending Big Ten regular season champion Maryland will visit Happy Valley Friday, Oct. 9, and then Penn State will travel to Rutgers (Oct. 16) and Indiana (Oct. 18) before hosting Iowa in the home finale Friday, Oct. 23 at 3:30 p.m. The regular season will conclude on the road at Northwestern, the defending Big Ten tournament champions, Friday, Oct. 30.

Indiana will host the Big Ten Tournament Nov. 5-8. Since joining the Big Ten in 1992, Penn State is second in the conference with seven regular season titles and first with six tournament titles.

The Lions will also look to make their 31st program appearance at the NCAA Tournament the following weekend. Penn State has advanced to the NCAA Tournament in 11 of the past 13 years, making six quarterfinal appearances, one semifinals appearance and one appearance as a NCAA Finalist in 2007. In the history of the field hockey program, the Lions have made seven semifinal appearances and two championship game appearances.

Last Updated May 29, 2015