Fairfield, Conn. (May 7, 20130)—The Sacred Heart Women's Volleyball team, who will look for its third Northeast Conference Championship in 2013, has released its schedule for the upcoming season. In addition to the seven returners, including 2010 NEC Rookie of the Year Dianis Mercado (Vega Baja, Calif.), 10 rookies join the squad for the 2013 campaign.
"I am very excited for our 2013 team," said Head Coach Rob Machan. "This is one of the strongest classes I have ever had at SHU and our upperclassmen put in our best spring ever. We have an excellent group of players and should be a strong contender in the conference this year."
The Pioneers kick off the 2013 season August 30 and 31 at the Crusader Classic where they'll face host-team Holy Cross, Stony Brook and UMASS-Lowell. Then they return home to host Hofstra in the home opener of September 3 at 7:00 p.m. before hosting the annual SHU Hampton Inn Invitational September 6 and 7 in the William H. Pitt Center featuring Fordham, Manhattan and American.
Sacred Heart rounds out the early season tournaments playing in the University of Delaware Tournament September 13 and 14 against Furman, Rutgers and Delaware, and the Villanova Classic the following weekend taking on UPenn, Norfolk State and Villanova.
The Pioneers then open Northeast Conference play on September 28 when they host Saint Francis U at 5:00 p.m. Interjected into the 14-game NEC schedule, Sacred Heart faces Connecticut, crosstown-rival Fairfield U, Stony Brook and St. John's on the road.