Villanova men’s soccer is going to the dance for the first time since 2016 and just the second time in program history.
The Wildcats (11-7-1) earned an at large bid into the field of 48 and will open on the road against the University of Vermont in Burlington, Vermont on Thursday at 6 p.m.
“This is something we’ve been working toward with this group of seniors and juniors,” head coach Tom Carlin said in a video posted by the team. “They’ve worked hard. To think about where we’ve come from 2019, to the Covid year to now, just shows this is a group of resilient young men that put a lot into this. We’re excited.”
Nova earned an at-large bid on the strength of their RPI playing in the tough Big East Conference where they finished with a 5-4-1 record. They also posted resume-building non-conference wins over Northwestern on the road and Rider and Yale at home.
Their win over Creighton on the road in the Big East Championship quarterfinal likely secured their place, similar to how their win over Creighton at home in 2016 secured their first berth into the tournament in program history.
The Wildcats 2016 team, which was honored earlier this season, fell to Akron 2-0 in the opening round of the tournament. A win in Burlington on Thursday evening would be a program first.
When your ️ gets punched! ✌️ #NCAASoccer #GoNova pic.twitter.com/G0GBlJF5e4— Villanova Men's Soccer (@NovaMSoccer) November 16, 2021