INDIANAPOLIS - The Butler women's soccer team will defend its 2010 Horizon League regular season title with a challenging schedule that will feature eight home matches and trips to Kansas, Indiana and Kentucky.
BU, which won the Horizon League last year under league coach of the year Tari St. John, will open with a pair of exhibitions - including an Aug. 14 date at Kansas - before hosting NAIA Madonna University in the regular season opener Friday, Aug. 19. After trips to Indiana and Indiana State, the Bulldogs will host Oregon State Sunday, Aug. 28.
"As in years past, we have scheduled some very difficult opponents in our non-league portion, including teams from the Big Ten, Big East and Pac-12 conferences," St. John said. "We have a much more experienced team returning this fall and look forward to testing ourselves this season."
"We are excited about the opportunity to have night games with the installation of lights on the Butler Bowl," St. John said. "It will allow for more students to attend Friday games and add to the game atmosphere."Another challenging Horizon League slate awaits the Bulldogs, who went 6-2-0 in the league last season. The league opener is Sunday, Sept. 18 at Detroit. Other road trips include Youngstown State, Valparaiso and Green Bay. Wright State will be the first league opponent to come under the lights at the Butler Bowl Saturday, Sept. 24. Butler's other league home matches are vs. Cleveland State (Oct. 5), Milwaukee (Oct. 15) and Loyola (Oct. 28).
"As returning conference champions, we know it will be difficult to take on the role of the underdog against any of our league opponents," St. John said. "Using the non-league schedule as preparation, we plan to make another run at a championship season and find additional success in the Horizon League Soccer Championship.
The Bulldogs return nine of the team's top 11 scorers (89.7% of the team's scoring) in addition to five players who garnered All-Horizon League recognition from last year's team.