Arrick Wilson, Sports Editor
The women’s soccer program made it to the Atlantic 10 postseason tournament last season, with the A-10 regular season championship. The 13-win season concluded after VCU took an upset loss in the first round of the tournament to Saint Joseph’s University.
Along with the upcoming games, Ram fans should also look for the return of players graduate student Amber DiOrio and redshirt junior midfielder Anna Bagley. Both players were picked by the league’s head coaches for the preseason All-A-10 team, according to the A-10 website.
1. Atlantic 10 — VCU at University of Richmond Spiders: Oct. 2 at 3 p.m.
The VCU and Richmond rivalry matchup holds considerable weight each season in each different sport. The black and gold rivalry with the Spiders still lives on to this day.
The Rams currently have a two-game winning streak against the Spiders, according to VCU Athletics. The Rams can hope to keep their lead in the rivalry in an anticipated match in Richmond, Virginia.
2. Atlantic 10 — VCU at Saint Louis University Billikens: Oct. 20 at 8 p.m.
Saint Louis University has won the A-10 championship four straight times and was voted to win it again this season by the league’s head coaches, according to the A-10 website.
The Billikens return a plethora of A-10 first-team selections including senior midfielder Abbie Miller, senior midfielder Brionna Halverson and A-10 Rookie of the Year, sophomore forward Emily Puricelli, according to the A-10 website.
With the Billikens’ league dominance, this game could be a chance for the Rams to upset the Billikens. This is not far-fetched as the Rams defeated the Billikens last season, according to VCU Athletics.
3. Atlantic 10 Conference Opener — VCU vs. University of Massachusetts Minutewomen: Sept. 15 at 7 p.m.
This game will open the A-10 conference play for the Rams. Last season, the Rams only lost one match to A-10 opponents, garnering a record of nine wins out of 10 matches.
The Rams could use this as a reintroduction of to A-10 conference teams, as it can set the tone for the rest of the conference schedule. The Rams have defeated the University of Massachusetts three straight times in the past three years, according to VCU Athletics.
4. VCU at No. 2 University of Virginia Cavaliers: Sept. 11 at 2 p.m.
Listed as the last non-conference game on the Ram’s schedule, the black and gold look to face the Cavaliers.
Last season, the Cavaliers earned the No. 1 seed in the 2021 NCAA Tournament, advancing to the semifinal before falling to Brigham Young University, according to VCU Athletics. The Cavaliers are currently ranked as the No. 2 team in the country by the national recruiting soccer website, Topdrawersoccer.
This game could be a chance for the Rams to upset not only a nationally ranked team, but also an interstate university.
5. Atlantic 10 — VCU at University of Dayton Flyers: Oct. 9 at 1 p.m.
The University of Dayton was picked second to win this season’s A-10 championship by the league’s head coaches, according to the A-10 website.
The Flyers return junior forward Itala Gemelli, who is the reigning A-10 Offensive Player of the Year, according to the A-10 website. Last season, the black and gold defeated the Flyers 3-1, continuing a three-game winning streak.
This season will be interesting for the Rams, as they will play in the Sports Backers Stadium again this season. This season, the Rams will attempt to bring home an A-10 championship for the first time, according to VCU Athletics.
The Rams will play a home game against the University of North Carolina Wilmington Seahawks on Aug. 26 at 7 p.m., at the Sports Backers Stadium. For ticket information, visit vcuathletics.com.