SEWARD, Neb. – The second season of head coach Greg Henson’s Concordia women’s soccer tenure gets underway on Friday (Aug. 29) when the Bulldogs welcome AIB College of Business (Iowa) for a 5 p.m. kickoff inside Bulldog Stadium. It will be the only chance for Bulldog fans to catch Concordia at home until Sept. 24.
Coming off a 9-9-2 campaign in 2013, the Bulldogs seek to defend their home turf, where they went 7-4 last season. Those 11 matches included a 4-1 season-opening victory over Bethel College in Henson’s Concordia debut. Plenty of veteran leadership returns from last year’s squad with the senior quartet of Rachel Mussell (54 games), Melissa Stine (53 games), Ashlie Sklenicka (36 games) and Marcie Sindt (34 games) carrying a combined 177 games of experience.
How these veterans mesh with key newcomers like midfielder Esther Soensken and forward Jessica Skerston might determine whether the Bulldogs can return to the GPAC semifinals for a second-straight year. There’s also exciting potential in Bulldogs such as sophomores in goalkeeper Chrissy Lind and forward Jordan McCoy.
AIB, 9-8 overall and 3-3 in the Midwest Collegiate Conference last season, enters the third year of existence as a women’s soccer program. The Eagles are off to a 1-0 start in 2014 after pulling out a 1-0 win over the University of Saint Francis (Ill.) on Aug. 23. Goalkeeper Kaylin Swart earned the shutout for a squad that did not graduate a single starter from a year ago.
Friday’s meeting will be the first-ever between Concordia and AIB. Following the season opener, the Bulldogs will then play six-straight contests on the road, beginning with in-state rival Bellevue University on Wednesday, Sept. 3 (7 p.m.).