The Florida soccer team learned its NCAA Tournament fate on Monday afternoon and the Gators will host Mercer on Sunday afternoon in a first round match up.
Florida (14-4-1) was given a No. 2 regional seed. They will welcome the Mercer Bears (14-5-2) at the Dizney Lacrosse Stadium on Sunday at 2 p.m.
“We’re really excited to be home because we’ve traveled so much this year,” said Florida head coach Becky Burleigh. “I think that’s been the biggest relief, just to be able to stay in our own beds and to get into a routine. We’ve had a little bit of a layoff and I think that’s been a very positive thing for us.”
Florida played Mercer in the first round of the 2010 NCAA Tournament with the Gators pulling out the 3-0 win.
This is the program’s 18th appearance in the NCAA Tournament through its 20 year history. The Gators hope to bounce back from an early SEC Tournament exit after falling to Tennessee in penalty kicks.
“Well I think what was (most) important was our mentality after the loss,” Burleigh said. “We really came together as a group and really supported one another. Especially when you have penalty kicks – that’s such an individual thing at that point, it doesn’t feel like a team situation. But the fact that our players really rallied around each other after (the loss) I think showed a lot of maturity on our team and a lot of growth on our team.”
The Gators are led by sophomore forward Savannah Jordan, who has 15 goals and six assists this year.
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