JERSEY CITY, NJ – Saint Peter's men's soccer head coach Julian Richens has announced the 2017 season slate for the Peacocks. The 16-game schedule is highlighted by seven home games and features four contests against non-conference opponents that the Peacocks went into overtime with in 2016.
"We always look to play a challenging non-conference schedule to help prepare us for our conference season," said Richens. "With some tough away fixtures, we are looking forward to setting the foundations for a successful season."
The Peacocks will open up the regular season on the road for the first time in three years, when the team heads to Newark to face in-state foe Seton Hall on August 25. The Peacocks hosted the Pirates in last season's opener, and last defeated the Pirates the last meeting in Newark during the 2012 opener, winning 3-1. Next, the squad will remain on the road when they face Hartwick for the third time in the last four seasons on September 1, meeting the Hawks in Oneonta, New York, for the second time after hosting Hartwick in 2016. The teams played to a 1-1 draw in Jersey City in last year's contest.
Saint Peter's will open up its home slate in Jersey City for one game on September 3, when the team welcomes St. Francis Brooklyn to Jaroschak Field. The Peacocks and Terriers have gone into double overtime in each of the last two meetings, with the Peacocks falling 2-1 last season and the teams playing to a 1-1 tie in 2015.
The team will hit the road again for a two-game stint at Sacred Heart and at La Salle. On September 9, the Peacocks will look to make it three straight wins against Sacred Heart after edging the Pioneers 3-2 in overtime last season and 2-1 in 2015. Then, on September 13, they will travel to Philadelphia to visit La Salle where the team will look to end a three-game losing streak to the Explorers. Saint Peter's and La Salle also went into extra time last season, with the Explorers taking the contest from the Peacocks, 4-3 in overtime.
Saint Peter's will be back at home on September 19 with a date against Bucknell. This match-up will be the 14th contest all-time between the teams with them last playing in 2009.
The squad opens MAAC play on the road for the 11th-straight season, when they head to Marist on September 27. The Jersey City team holds a slim 15-14-1 advantage against the Red Foxes, but Marist has taken the last two meetings, including a 2-0 shutout last year.
Saint Peter's comes back to Jaroschak Field for its MAAC home opener against Rider in an hOURglass Rivalry matchup on September 30. The Broncs earned the win in Lawrenceville in 2016 in the season finale and hold an 18-12-1 margin in the series. Saint Peter's took the last meeting in Jersey City between the two New Jersey schools in 2015, winning 2-0. The Peacocks will remain at home for their first October contest with a league game against the Jaspers of Manhattan on October 4. Saint Peter's holds a commanding 29-11-1 series lead over Manhattan.
A two-game conference road trip begins in Western New York at Niagara on October 7 and concludes in Connecticut at Fairfield on October 11. The Peacocks lead the overall series with the Purple Eagles 15-9-5 and hold a two-game winning streak. The Stags hold an all-time series advantage over the Peacocks, leading 24-18-5 and the Peacocks have surrendered the last four meetings to the Stags.
Saint Peter's will remain in the state of New Jersey for the next four games, including three of the matches on its home pitch, starting with Canisius on October 14. The Peacocks trail the Griffs 11-15-1 all-time and won four straight against Canisius before falling in the last three straight. Saint Peter's host Iona next on October 18. The Peacocks and Gaels are meeting for the 39th time and the Gaels lead the series 19-16-3. The lone away match during the four-game stretch puts Saint Peter's in West Long Branch, New Jersey against hOURglass Rival Monmouth on October 21. The Peacocks edged the Hawks 1-0 last year on a game-winning goal by Peacock alum Louis Mobbs with 20 seconds remaining for the upset win. Saint Peter's closes out the 2017 home stanza with a Senior Day game on October 28 against Siena. The Peacocks are 11-14-3 against the Siena Saints all-time.
A road trip to Quinnipiac on November 1, will conclude the 2017 regular season campaign. The 2016 regular season champions Quinnipiac, edged Saint Peter's in a heartbreaking 1-0 overtime match in Jersey City on Senior Day last year. The Peacocks lead the all-time series with the Bobcats, 5-3-1 but Quinnipiac holds a 2-1-1 series advantage since joining the MAAC in 2013.
The top six conference teams will participate in the 2017 MAAC Men's Soccer Championship, from November 5-12. The tournament will be hosted by the No. 3 and No. 4 seeds during the first rounds, and the No. 1 seed will host the semifinals and final rounds. The top two seeds will also be awarded first round byes in the tournament. Saint Peter's has won the MAAC championship titles in 2003 and 2010 and the program has made appearances in the NCAA tournament in 2003, 2007, and 2010.
To follow men's soccer action all season long, visit saintpeterspeacocks.com and follow the action on all social media sites using the handle @SPUAthletics.