by Dan Gardella
Fairfield — On Wednesday morning, the Fairfield Stags figured out the second half of their 2018-2019 season schedule as the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference (MAAC) released the conference schedules for all eleven teams, concluding with the annual MAAC Tournament in Albany, New York beginning on March 7th, and concluding on March 11th. The Stags begin their MAAC schedule at home as they welcome in Rider on January 3rd.
With the full schedule unveiled, here’s some things you need to know about Fairfield’s 2018-19 schedule:
Fairfield will play 12 of their 30 regular season games on their home court with only three of them coming in non-conference play. Last season, visiting teams had a tough time escaping Connecticut with a victory against the Stags as Fairfield went 10-3 at home. After opening the season with two road games, the Stags will be home for two by welcoming NEC foes LIU Brooklyn and Wagner on November 13th and 17th.
Sydney Johnson explained how he wants his team to become exposed to playing high quality teams to prepare them for high-intensity games in March, either from the NCAA Tournament or other postseason tournament. This year, the Stags did themselves no favors as they will take on four teams that finished in the Top 100 of the country in RPI: Purdue (9), Old Dominion (74), Bucknell (81), and Boston College (94), all on the road. Along with Bucknell, Fairfield will take on two more conference regular season and tournament champions this season, both coming from the NEC (Wagner and LIU Brooklyn).
Strong Conference Start:
Last season, Fairfield hit a wall in the beginning of conference play by starting the conference slate dropping five of their first six contest. From there, the Stags flipped a switch and finished the season going 8-4. Fairfield used that late season momentum to win three straight in the MAAC Tournament before falling to Iona in the championship. This season, Fairfield will open MAAC play with six of their first nine contests on their home court. With a good start this season, Fairfield could turn some heads in the conference.
After the Stags open up conference play against the defending regular season champions in Rider on January 3rd, they travel to New Rochelle to face off with the MAAC Tournament champions in the Iona Gaels on January 5th. Following that, Fairfield returns for a two game homestand against Niagara and St. Peter’s before hitting the road for two against in-state rival Quinnipiac and Monmouth. Upon their return from New Jersey, Fairfield opens their longest homestand of conference play with three straight at home against Canisius, Siena, and Iona. Immediately after that, they embark on their longest road trip of conference play with three away from home against Manhattan to close out January, followed by Marist and Siena. The Stags return home quickly to welcome in Monmouth in mid-February before heading on the road again, this time for two games against Canisius and Niagara. Fairfield concludes their season with two home games against Manhattan and Marist before finishing the season at St. Peter’s on March 3rd.