Photo by: Tony Leon/ActionWestPhotography.com
WHITTIER, Calif. – The Whittier College Women's Soccer team is set for this weekend's NCAA Division III West Regional as they take on Pacific Lutheran on Saturday, November 11 beginning at 8:00pm.
The 64-team field is comprised of selections from Pool A (automatic qualifications (AQ) from a conference), B (independent schools and school that are members of conferences that do not meet the requirements for automatic qualification) and C (schools from AQ conferences that were not the conference champion and any remaining Pool B teams). This year, forty-three conferences were awarded automatic qualification for the 2017 championship, one team was selected from Pool B and the final 20 berths went to Pool C teams.
Cal Lutheran University is the host for the Division III West Region Pod and will welcome UC Santa Cruz, Pacific Lutheran, and Whittier College.
The schedule for Saturday includes:
5:30pm – No. 1 Cal Lutheran (15-3-2, 11-1-2 SCIAC) vs. No. 4 UC Santa Cruz (5-14-1)
8:00pm – No. 2 Pacific Lutheran (16-3-1, 13-2-1 SCIAC) vs. No. 3 Whittier College (12-8, 6-8 SCIAC)
All games will be played at Rolland Stadium with the winners coming back on Sunday, November 12 to face-off at 7:00pm.
Whittier took on the Regals of Cal Lutheran three times this season. The Poets were swept on the regular season falling 2-1 (2OT) and 2-0 but came back strong to upset the top seeded Regals in the Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SCIAC) Post Season Tournament 3-2 in OT.
The Purple & Gold did not play Pacific Lutheran or UC Santa Cruz this year. The last time the Poets and Lutes matched up was last year in 2016 with a decision that ended in a tie at 0-0 (2OT). Back in 2015, the Poets took on UC Santa Cruz and won 4-1. Since 2013 Whittier is 1-2-1 against both of these programs.
Second-round winners will advance to one of four sectional sites November 17 and 18 or 18 and 19. All games, except the semifinals and final, will be played on the campuses of competing institutions. Winners of the four sectionals will advance to the semifinals December 1 and 2, at UNCG Soccer Stadium in Greensboro, North Carolina, with the University of North Carolina at Greensboro and Greensboro Sports Commission serving as hosts.
The NCAA Division III West Regional Berth for the Poets is the second in program history with the last appearance occurring back in 2003 where Whittier fell 2-1 to Linfield.