Nov. 9, 2009
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. - For the 10th year in a row, Florida State is headed to the NCAA Tournament. The Seminoles were recognized as one of four No. 1 national seeds in this year's tournament for the first time in school history and have earned the right to play on their home turf through the first four rounds leading up to the College Cup in College Station, Texas, December 4 & 6. FSU earned a national seed for the fifth straight year and for the sixth time in the last seven.
"It's great," said head coach Mark Krikorian on receiving one of four No. 1 seeds. "Quite honestly, I was a little surprised...we were right there with Portland and I thought they were a most worthy group of being a No. 1 seed. I think the strength of our schedule and playing in the ACC carried us to that No. 1 seed. We feel good about the opportunity to play at home in front of our crowd again and to bring the NCAA Tournament back to Tallahassee."
The top-seeded Seminoles will open the tournament in Tallahassee on Friday, November 13 at 4:30 p.m., against Southeastern Louisiana (13-4-2). Also making the trek to Tallahassee are Auburn (10-8-3) and California (10-8-1). The Tigers and Golden Bears will play in the second game on Friday at 7:00 p.m. The winners will square-off on Sunday at 1:00 p.m.
"We realize what is at stake," said senior captain Becky Edwards. "We realize that one loss and we're done. We have some great opponents ahead of us including in the first round against SE Louisiana. We are going to go into Friday's game looking for a battle and take each game one game at a time."
"It's go time now," said junior midfielder Amanda DaCosta. "You lose and you're out; we have to get after it right from the start."
Florida State will serve as a host for the first and second rounds for the sixth time in school history. The Seminoles are undefeated all-time at home in the NCAA Tournament posting a perfect 15-0-0 record.
"It's definitely exciting, we put in a lot of hard work and were rewarded for it," said sophomore Jessica Price on having the chance to host the first and second rounds of the NCAA Tournament. "I'm exciting for all our fans to come out and support us."
"Playing at home is always exciting," added Edwards. "We are used to our facilities and obviously we get to play in front of our great fans. They bring so much energy and extra support which is just awesome. We are thankful to be playing at home and are really looking forward to it."
"Having the potential to host four rounds of the NCAA Tournament here in Tallahassee is very important to us," explained Krikorian. "We have been a very good tournament team here (in Tallahassee) even before I got here, Patrick Baker and his staff did a great job of holding serve at home. We feel good about it, we feel it is a fair draw and know that SE Louisiana, Auburn and Cal are all quality teams."
FSU is one of just three schools to play in four of the last six College Cups. The Seminoles join UCLA and Notre Dame in this elusive category. UCLA leads all schools with seven College Cup appearances this decade followed by North Carolina with six and Notre Dame with five. Florida State and Portland are tied for the fourth most appearances with four each. The Seminoles advanced to the school's first national championship game in College Station, Texas in 2007, site of the 2009 College Cup.
Florida State and Southeastern Louisiana will face each other for the first time in school history. The Lions received the automatic bid after defeating Texas State 2-0 to capture the Southland Conference championship. SE Louisiana is making its first ever appearance in the NCAA Tournament in 2009.
"We really have been preparing all season for this moment," added Price. "Now, it's our time to shine, play our best and work hard for each other."
Both Auburn and California earned at-large bids out of the Southeastern Conference and Pac-10 Conference, respectively. The Tigers are making their eighth NCAA Tournament appearance, while the Golden Bears are in postseason play for the 17th time in school history.
FSU is 8-1-0 against Auburn including a 4-0-0 record in the NCAA Tournament. Cal and FSU have played just twice with both meetings coming in postseason play. The Seminoles are 2-0-0 all-time against the Golden Bears as both games were played in Tallahassee.
"This is what it is all about," added Krikorian. "All the hard work that everyone puts in up to this point, this is when you need to have your `A' game. If we are smart enough, prepared enough and if we play well enough then maybe we will go far in this tournament and give ourselves a chance to get back to the College Cup."
Tournament passes will go on sale beginning Tuesday, November 10 and can be purchased over the phone at 888-FSU-NOLE, in person at the Seminole Ticket Office located in side C of the University Center and online at seminoles.com. Single-game tickets as well as tournament passes can be purchased at the Seminole Soccer Complex beginning at 3:30 p.m., on Friday, November 13.
$10 - Adults
$6 - Youth, 18 & under, senior 50+ and students from participating schools
Free - Children 2 & under
Note: The first 100 students, with a valid student ID, will be admitted free of charge to Friday's first round games in Tallahassee.
Single Day Tickets
$7 - Adults
$5 - Youth, 18 & under, senior 50+ and students from participating schools
Free - Children 2 & under
Fans are encouraged to stay tuned to Seminoles.com for updates regarding the 2009 NCAA Tournament in Tallahassee.