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New Horizons: Robert Morris men’s soccer to embark on spring schedule with new coach and in a new conference

Photo courtesy Zac Weiss | Pittsburgh Soccer Now

For the first time in more than 20 years, Robert Morris University’s men’s soccer program will be under the direction of a new head coach and will be playing in a new league.

First-year head coach Jason O’Keefe, has announced a 10-match schedule featuring all Horizon League contests, as the league prepares for a spring competitive season following the cancellation of its traditional fall campaign due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Unlike local Division I men’s program counterparts, which will play six-league games this spring, RMU will face a more ambitious schedule, with matches slated against all ten Horizon League programs that compete in soccer once apiece this season.  Game days will be spread out over different days of the week.

RMU starts the season on the road in just over two weeks time with a clash at Oakland on February 4 before returning for a two-game homestead against Cleveland State and IUPUI.

In another note of interest, according to its schedule, RMU will play all five home matches at SouthPointe Fieldhouse, as it appears they’re dealing with challenges of maintaining natural grass fields at the North Athletic Complex on its campus in Moon Township.

They head to Green Bay to finish out February with one more away match.

Road trips to UIC, Detroit Mercy, and Milwaukee as well as home matchups against Northern Kentucky and Wright State round the 2021 campaign out for the Colonials.

RMU enters the 2021 spring campaign with a new face and a new head coach in O’Keefe as well as a new home in the Horizon League. O’Keefe spent the last four years as head coach at Appalachian State, the last two of which he led the Mountaineers to back-to-back winning seasons, including a mark of 11-7-1 (.605) in 2019.

Heading into the 2021 campaign, RMU’s roster will feature a re-vamped squad with nine new faces this season, including five true freshmen and four transfers.

Hernan IbarraTom AkinolaSebastian SjoRamsey DaymonEvan LamarcaLucas Shook (Butler)Kelvin RamirezMiller Masson and Aitor Ruiz De Eguilaz will all don the Colonial Red, White, and Blue for the first time this season as RMU looks to make an impact in their new conference.

Local players of note on the squad include all three keepers: Grant Glorioso (Jr., North Allegheny), Mike Zolnienczyk (So., Springdale), Keaton Jennings (North Catholic); Nate Graziani (Jr., West Allegheny), Nino Citivate (Fr., Canon-McMillan), Matt Cillo (Jr., South Fayette)

Amongst their new Horizon League foes, the Colonials have never faced Milwaukee, Fort Wayne or IUPUI. Cleveland State will be Robert Morris’ closest conference foe, with just 124 miles separating Cleveland and Moon Township.  The Colonials and Vikings have squared off 17 times in their history, with CSU owning an 11-6 overall record in the series.

Look for more coverage as Pittsburgh Soccer Now plans to connect with Jason O’Keefe and preview the Colonials prior to the start of the season.

Robert Morris Men’s Soccer Schedule (Spring 2021) 

Date Time At Opponent  
February 4, 2021 (Thursday) 7:00 p.m. Away Oakland Rochester, Mich.
February 10, 2021 (Wednesday) 1:00 p.m. Home Cleveland State Canonsburg, Pa. SouthPointe Fieldhouse
February 16, 2021 (Tuesday) 1:00 p.m. Home IUPUI Canonsburg, Pa. SouthPointe Fieldhouse
February 22, 2021 (Monday) 1:00 p.m. Away Green Bay Green Bay, Wis.
March 6, 2021 (Saturday) 1:00 p.m. Home Purdue Fort Wayne Canonsburg, Pa. SouthPointe Fieldhouse
March 12, 2021 (Friday) TBA Away UIC Chicago, Ill.
March 18, 2021 (Thursday) 1:00 p.m. Home Northern Kentucky Canonsburg, Pa. SouthPointe Fieldhouse
March 24, 2021 (Wednesday) 3:00 p.m. Away Detroit Mercy Detroit, Mich.
March 30, 2021 (Tuesday) 10:00 a.m. Home Wright State Canonsburg, Pa. SouthPointe Fieldhouse
April 5, 2021 (Monday) 12:00 p.m. Away Milwaukee Milwaukee, Wis.


John Krysinsky has covered soccer and other sports for many years for various publications and media outlets. He is also author of 'Miracle on the Mon' -- a book about the Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC, which chronicles the club, particularly the early years of Highmark Stadium with the narrative leading up to and centered around a remarkable match that helped provide a spark for the franchise. John has covered sports for Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, DK Pittsburgh Sports, Pittsburgh Sports Report, has served as color commentator on Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC broadcasts, and worked with OPTA Stats and broadcast teams for US Open Cup and International Champions Cup matches held in the US. Krysinsky also served as the Head Men’s Soccer Coach at his alma mater, Point Park University, where he led the Pioneers to the first-ever winning seasons and playoff berths (1996-98); head coach of North Catholic boys (2007-08), associate head coach of Shady Side Academy boys (2009-2014).

Riverhounds MF Danny Griffin

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