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North Carolina, Notre Dame among weekend invitational hosts
No. 1 North Carolina
Defending NCAA champion North Carolina returns to the friendly confines of Fetzer Field for the first time since a 2012 NCAA third round victory against Baylor last Nov. 18 when it plays host to the Carolina Nike Classic Friday and Sunday. Tobacco Road neighbor Duke, Kennesaw State and New Mexico join the Tar Heels in this weekend's field, which consists of a pair of doubleheaders.
Friday's slate includes a meeting between 12th-ranked Duke and Kennesaw State at 2:30 p.m. followed by the home opener of the top-ranked Tar Heels against New Mexico at 5 p.m.
The ACC rivals then swap opponents for Sunday's session with Duke meeting the Lobos at noon and the Tar Heels taking on the Owls at 3 p.m.
No. 2 Stanford
No. 2 Stanford plays its home opener Saturday at 7 p.m. against No. 16 Portland at Laird Q. Cagan Stadium. They resume a series in which they have met five times in the NCAA tournament and are annually regarded among the strongest teams on the west coast.
Stanford has won its past 24 home openers, dating back to a 1988 loss to UC Santa Barbara in the Cardinal’s fifth season of existence. Stanford also will attempt to extend its 67-match home unbeaten streak.
No. 3 Florida State, No. 8 Florida
It is rivalry weekend for the third-ranked Florida State soccer team as the Seminoles (2-0-0) travel to play No. 8 Florida (2-0-0) in Gainesville on Friday, Aug. 30 at 7 p.m. before returning home to face No. 17 UCF (2-0-0) on Sunday, Sept. 1 at 1 p.m.
This weekend will mark the first two ranked opponents the Seminoles will face in 2013. Florida State faced the Gators (No. 22) and the Knights (No. 9) last year with both teams ranked in the top 25 at the time of the meeting. FSU was victorious in both matches by identical 1-0 scores. The Seminoles went on to finish the 2012 campaign 11-3-0 against ranked foes and 4-2-0 against teams ranked in the top 10. Under head coach Mark Krikorian, Florida State is 62-33-8 all-time against ranked opponents.
The Gators will wrap up the weekend with another intra-state matchup, traveling to take on Florida International at 7 p.m.
No. 4 UCLA, No. 7 Notre Dame
The Irish will host the Notre Dame adidas Invitational this weekend at Alumni Stadium. No. 4 UCLA (2-0-0) will take on No. 20 Marquette (1-1-0) on Friday at 5 p.m., followed by No. 7 Notre Dame (2-0-0) against Oakland (1-1-0) at 7:30 p.m. The teams will play again on Sunday, featuring a top-10 matchup between Notre Dame and UCLA.
The Bruins will be coming to South Bend for the first time since 1997 (an 8-0 Notre Dame victory in the NCAA championship quarterfinals at old Alumni Field), and will face the Fighting Irish for just the second time since the teams' 2004 national championship contest (won by Notre Dame on penalties, 4-3, after a 1-1 double-overtime draw).
No. 5 Virginia, No. 9 Penn State
The No. 5 Virginia women's soccer team continues its season-opening seven-game home stand Friday as it hosts No. 9 Penn State. Game time at Klöckner Stadium at 5:30 p.m.
Penn State leads the all-time series 7-2-1, including a 3-0-0 record in Charlottesville. The Nittany Lions have won at Klöckner in each of the past two seasons. Last year, Penn State defeated Virginia 3-1 in the season opener.
The Cavaliers continue their home stand on Sunday as they host in-state foe Richmond at 5 p.m. The Nittany Lions will host La Salle on Sunday at 1 p.m.
No. 6 BYU
No. 6 BYU (1-0-0) will host Nebraska (2-0-0) this Saturday, Aug. 31 before heading on the road to Baton Rouge, La., to face the LSU Tigers on Labor Day.
The Cougars beat Cal State Fullerton 3-1 in their regular season home opener last Friday. BYU had two goals scored by Rachel Manning and another added by freshman Ashley Hatch. Nebraska played two games last weekend beating Southeast Missouri State 4-0 and Cincinnati 4-1. Nebraska has scored seven second half goals this season.
BYU has never beaten Nebraska (0-3-0), but hasn't faced the Huskers since losing to them twice (2-0 and 3-0) in 2001. The 3-0 loss came in the second round of the NCAA tournament in Lincoln, Neb. The Huskers will continue their Utah road trip and play Utah State on Monday in Logan after facing the Cougars.
No. 10 Wake Forest
The No. 10 Demon Deacons will play host to North Texas and Louisville this weekend as a part of the Wake Forest Invitational. They will take on the Mean Green on Friday at 6 p.m. and the Cardinals on Sunday at 2 p.m.
Wake Forest is 2-0-0 after a 3-1 win against Kentucky and a 3-0 win against Alabama last weekend. Katie Stengel led the way by scoring five goals in the two games.