MEDFORD - The Jumbo field hockey, women's soccer and volleyball teams hit the road this weekend to compete for New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC) championships.
Head coach Cora Thompson's volleyball squad is the first in action as they face Connecticut College in a conference quarterfinal at Williams College on Friday night at 8 pm. Head coach Martha Whiting's women's soccer team will play host Middlebury in the NESCAC semi-finals on Saturday at 11 am. Head coach Tina McDavitt's field hockey team will be at Amherst College where they will play Bowdoin College in the conference semi-finals on Saturday at 1:30 pm.
Volleyball is competing for its first NESCAC title since the conference went to a championship tournament format in 1999. Tufts has never failed to qualify for the conference championship, and they have been the runner-up four times (2004, 2005, 2009, 2010). The Jumbos earned the #4 seed in this year's tournament with a 7-3 mark in the league (19-7 overall). Tufts has won seven straight entering the post-season. Fifth-seed Connecticut College was 15-11 overall and 6-4 in the league. Tufts topped the Camels in three sets on September 28 of the regular season. Friday night's winner will face the winner of the #1 Williams versus #8 Bates quarterfinal in the semi-finals on Saturday at 1 pm. The conference final is slated for Sunday at noon.
Women's Soccer is in the NESCASC "final four" for the first time since 2009. After failing to qualify for the tournament last fall, Tufts (9-6, 5-5 NESCAC) responded with a very competitve sixth-place finish in the conference this season. The Jumbos then upset #3 seed Bowdoin in the quarters last Saturday in Maine, 2-1. They'll need to top another favorite on Saturday in the semis as the host and #1 seed Panthers bring in an 11-1-3 overall / 8-1-1 NESCAC mark. During the regular-season, Middlebury scored with less than two minutes remaining to take a 2-1 win at Tufts on October 5. The Jumbos are competing for their second NESCAC title. They were the 2002 champions as well as runner-up in 2000 and 2005. Saturday's winner will face either #4 Trinity or #2 Williams in Sunday's noon final.
Field Hockey (14-1, 9-1 NESCAC) earned the #2 seed in NESCAC's by defeating Bowdoin 1-0 at Bello Field on October 30. After eliminating #7 Williams in the quarterfinals last Saturday 3-0, the Jumbos get rival Bowdon again in the semi-finals. The Polar Bears are the #3 seed in the tourney with 13-2 overall and 8-2 NESCAC records. The 2012 NCAA Champions, Tufts lost to Bowdoin in the conference semis last season before winning an NCAA Third Round game over the Polar Bears 2-1. The Jumbos are contending for their second league title. They won in 2009 and were the runner-up in 2010 and 2008. The Tufts-Bowdoin winner will move on to the NESCAC championship game on Sunday at noon against the #1 Amherst-#4 Middlebury winner. The Jumbos have nine straight victories entering the weekend.
The New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC) is pleased to announce it is partner with the Northeast Sports Network (NSN) to webcast the final rounds of NESCAC Championships for 16 team sports during the 2013-14 academic year. The partnership kicks off this weekend with coverage of field hockey, men’s and women’s soccer and volleyball championships at nsnsports.net/NESCAC.