NEWPORT NEWS, Va. – The first round of the 2017 NCAA Division I Men’s Soccer Tournament gets underway this Thursday with Massachusetts and Fordham both hosting matches. This year the Atlantic 10 placed three teams into the 48 team field with Massachusetts earning the A-10’s automatic bid, VCU received a first-round bye by claiming the No. 16 national seed and Fordham received an at-large bid into the tournament.
UMass is set to host Colgate in the opening round on Thursday at 1:00 pm in Amherst, Mass. The Minutemen secured the Atlantic 10’s automatic berth in the tournament after beating Saint Louis, Fordham, and VCU to win the conference championship. It was the first time since 1991 that the same team won both the regular season title and a conference title.
Massachusetts defeated Colgate 2-1 in their meeting earlier in the season back on Sept. 16 at UMass. The victory started an 11-match unbeaten streak for the Minutemen that lasted until the final regular season game. UMass holds a 3-1-0 series advantage all-time against the Raiders dating back to the first meeting between the two squads in 2008. Colgate won the meeting last year on their home field 2-0.
Thursday’s match will be streamed live for free on Facebook and can be accessed through the link here. The winner of this match will go on to face No. 13 seed Michigan on Sunday, Nov. 19 in Ann Arbor, Mich.
Rewarded with an at-large bid, Fordham will host the St. Francis Brooklyn Terriers on Thursday; game time is set for 7:00 pm at Coffey Field in Bronx, N.Y. Fordham is no stranger to the NCAA Tournament, its been selected to the tournament field three out of the last four years. The Terriers have had recent success appearing in the NCAA Tournament, this is their fourth appearance in the past five years.
The game will be streamed live on the A-10 Network, the link can be found here. The winner of Thursday’s match will face No. 11 seed Virginia on Sunday in Charlottesville, Va.
By earning the No. 16 national seed, VCU will not play until Sunday afternoon. This is VCU’s first NCAA Tournament appearance since 2013, and first time getting a first-round bye since 2012. VCU will play host to the winner of the Butler/Lipscomb matchup on Sunday, Nov. 19 at 5:00 pm at Sports Backers Stadium. With a win Sunday night, VCU would face a potential matchup with the No. 1 seed overall in the tournament, Wake Forest, the following weekend.