Highlighted by women’s soccer hosting FGCU in the first round of the NCAA tournament, USF athletics will have a busy weekend with men’s and women’s basketball also playing at home.
After winning or drawing its last nine games, USF women’s soccer was selected to host a first round game against FGCU at Corbett Stadium on Saturday at 1 p.m.
The Eagles (14-3-1) didn’t face USF (12-3-2) in the regular season, but the two faced off in the first round of the 2015 NCAA Tournament at Corbett, where the Eagles came out on top.
“Gulf Coast is a great team with they have a great record,” USF coach Denise Schilte-Brown said. “It’s going to be a battle and we’re going to be up for the task.”
Tickets are free for the first 500 students, with $5 tickets for students who aren’t in the first 500. Tickets will be $7 for all non-student fans who want to attend.
“I’m pretty excited that it’s two Florida teams going at it. I think Corbett is going to be packed,” Schilte-Brown said.
Women’s basketball to play two home games
USF women’s basketball will both start the weekend of home games for USF when it plays LSU at 5:30 p.m. in the Sun Dome and close the slate of games Sunday when it plays Houston Baptist at 2 p.m.
The games will be the Bulls’ first two of the 2017-18 season, and Friday’s matchup against LSU (37) will be its only against an opponent who is ranked in the preseason Rating Percentage Index (RPI) top 100 until they play Notre Dame on Nov. 25.
“When you really look at it, it was just yesterday we were in Tallahassee,” Fernandez said. “This offseason has flown by and I think Friday will be very exciting for both basketball programs. We’re definitely starting with a really, really good opponent in LSU. The last time we faced them was in this building in the NCAA tournament.”
The last time USF and the Tigers faced off, in the first round of the NCAA tournament, USF left the Sun Dome with a 73-64 victory.
Tickets to Friday and Sunday’s games are free for students. The men’s basketball team will play immediately after the women’s game ends Friday.
Men’s basketball opens Gregory era
Immediately following the USF women’s basketball game against LSU, the men’s team will host Florida Atlantic, with the estimated start time at 8 p.m.
The Owls, ranked 282 in the RPI rankings, are ranked 34 spots higher than the Bulls, who are ranked 316. In their only meeting last season, the Bulls lost to the Owls 78-62 in their fifth game of the season.
Friday’s game will be the first regular season game for new coach Brian Gregory, who was hired in March after the Bulls’ closed out an 8-23 season with former coach Orlando Antigua and interim coach Murry Bartow at the helm.