EDWARDSVILLE, Ill. – Seven home matches highlight the 2017-18 SIUE wrestling schedule as Head Coach Jeremy Spates looks to challenge this year's squad.
The home schedule includes four nonconference matches with Drexel (Nov. 10), Buffalo (Jan. 12), Missouri (Feb. 14) and Northwestern (Feb. 18). SIUE welcomes three Southern Conference opponents to the Vadalabene Center this season, including Citadel (Jan. 7), Campbell (Feb. 11) and VMI (Feb. 11).
"We have good group of incoming teams," said Spates. "Drexel was ranked in the top 25 most of last year and has some good kids on their team. We have some good SoCon teams coming in, and we're excited about our home matches late in the season against Missouri and Northwestern."
The Cougars will debut the season Nov. 4 in Iowa at the Harold Nichols Cyclone Open.
"It will be good to start the season by seeing some teams we wouldn't normally see," said Spates. "Hopefully, we'll see some high-level competition."
SIUE continues to make appearances at one of the top events in the area at the Lindenwood Open (Nov. 18).
In early part of the dual season, the Cougars face Indiana (Dec. 2), Cleveland State (Dec. 2), Central Michigan (Dec. 18), and Purdue (Dec. 18).
In late December, SIUE will make an appearance at a new national event – the South Beach Duals in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. The Cougars are scheduled to compete against Binghamton, Kent State, Michigan State and North Carolina.
"This will give us an opportunity to take our whole team down there and get matches for everyone rather than just the 10 or 12 we would get in another tournament," said Spates. "We also are seeing teams from four conferences and East Coast teams we don't always see."
SIUE continues its dual meet tradition with Northern Illinois, competing Jan. 13 before the IKWF state meet in Springfield, Illinois.
The latter part of the schedule includes road SoCon matches at Chattanooga (Jan. 19), Appalachian State (Jan. 21), Gardner-Webb (Jan. 28) and Davidson (Jan. 28).
The Cougars compete in their final SoCon Championships March 3 in Asheville, North Carolina. SIUE announced earlier this year that it will compete in the Mid-American Conference starting with the 2018-19 season.
The NCAA Division I Championships, the goal for all collegiate wrestlers, will take place March 13-15 in Cleveland, Ohio.