ELON, N.C. – Elon University women’s soccer will face Horizon League champion Milwaukee in the opening round of the 2020 NCAA Tournament, as announced on the NCAA selection show on Monday afternoon, April 19. The Phoenix (6-3) and Panthers (8-1-1) will meet for a 3 p.m. game on Wednesday, April 28 at WakeMed Field in Cary, N.C., with the winner earning the right to play top-seeded Florida State.
Elon is making its second trip to the national tournament in its Division I history and its first appearance since capturing its first Big South title during the 1999 campaign. That year saw the Phoenix earn a 3-2 overtime win over Liberty in the conference championship before falling to No. 22 Duke 3-1 in Durham, N.C. in the opening round of the NCAA tournament.
“It’s a really exciting time for the program,” said head coach Neil Payne. “There’s a lot of this current group that were here a couple of years ago. They’ve sacrificed a lot. We rolled our sleeves up and went to work and we haven’t deviated from that. We’ve been committed to that and every time they step out on the field they’re working that much harder. So it’s really gratifying, particularly for that group, to be at such an exciting part in the program’s history.”
First round action will be played on April 27-28, with second rounds happening on April 30-May 1. The third round will be on May 5 and quarterfinals on May 9. The national semifinals will be held on May 13 and the championship game is scheduled for May 17 at Sahlen’s stadium at WakeMed Soccer Park. Each of the first four rounds will be available on NCAA.com, while the national semifinals will be broadcast live on ESPN2 and the final will be broadcast live on ESPNU.
The Phoenix captured its first Colonial Athletic Association Championship title this past Saturday, April 17 as the team recorded a 1-0 win over UNCW at Towson’s Tiger Field. After a scoreless first half, Carson Jones broke through in the 81st minute as she put away the rebound of her own blocked shot. Elon’s back line held the Seahawks to just two shots on goal as freshman goalkeeper McKenna Dalfonso recorded her fourth consecutive shutout and sixth of the season. The Sewell, N.J. native also totaled two saves on the day. Jones and Lily Harkes led the team in shots on goal (2), followed by Beky Myers (1) and Claire Broderdorp (1).