Event Expected to Generate $1.29 Million for the Local Economy
PITTSBURGH – The NCAA Division II Men’s and Women’s Soccer Championships return to Pittsburgh this week for the second consecutive year with games being played at Highmark Stadium on Dec. 12 and 14. These championships are part of the 22 NCAA championships that Pittsburgh was awarded for the years 2018-2022. SportsPITTSBURGH, Slippery Rock University, Highmark Stadium and the Local Organizing Committee will host 200 student-athletes, in addition to their coaches and fans. These championships were also hosted in Pittsburgh in 2018 as part of the NCAA Division II National Championships Festival.
“We are thrilled to be able to bring NCAA Division II soccer back to the great city of Pittsburgh,” Jim Moore, NCAA women’s soccer committee chair, said. “The city was a wonderful host for us in 2018, and we couldn’t be happier to return to beautiful Highmark Stadium to showcase the very best of Division II soccer.”
This year’s championships will feature the final four teams from the men’s bracket, as well as the final four teams from the women’s bracket. Semifinals will take place on Thursday, Dec. 12 at 11 a.m., 2 p.m., 5 p.m. and 8 p.m. Championship matches will take place on Saturday, Dec. 14 at 12 p.m. and 3 p.m.
“Slippery Rock University Athletics is pleased to again partner with SportsPITTSBURGH in bringing the 2019 NCAA Division II Men’s and Women’s Soccer Championships to Highmark Stadium,” Paul Lueken, director of athletics for Slippery Rock University, said. “What a tremendous opportunity for us to showcase the city of Pittsburgh and SRU as premier partners in hosting exciting NCAA championships!”
Players from the eight soccer teams will participate in reading to students, joining in gym classes and presenting at assemblies at five local schools. Students from those schools will then have the opportunity to attend the semifinal matches on Thursday, Dec. 12. Members of the Shadyside Boys and Girls Club, as well as City of Pittsburgh firefighters will unveil the American flag at the championship matches on Saturday, Dec. 14. Community engagement is a staple for the NCAA and one of the many components that bring the region together around sports events.
“SportsPITTSBURGH is honored to welcome back this event for the second year,” Jennifer Hawkins, executive director for SportsPITTSBURGH, said. “We are proud to have a hand in establishing Pittsburgh as an iconic destination and a home for reoccurring sports events and to again demonstrate that our community will come together to support these student-athletes.”
As the sports development division of VisitPITTSBURGH, SportsPITTSBURGH’s primary goal is to attract and host a wide variety of sporting events while providing planners and local stakeholders with the expertise and professionalism required to host a world-class event in the Pittsburgh region.