CHAPEL HILL – The reigning national champion women’s soccer team released its 2013 schedule Thursday with new ACC opponents and 13 conference games.

Notre Dame, Pittsburgh, and Syracuse join the ACC this summer and are featured on the Carolina women’s soccer schedule for the first time as conference foes.

The season kicks off with three Nike-sponsored events at Virginia, Carolina, and Duke respectively. Just six games into the season, UNC will begin its conference schedule on the road against Virginia Tech.

The early schedule is road-heavy with four of the first five ACC games away from Chapel Hill. That lends to a favorable close to the season as six of the last eight games will be at Fetzer Field.

The Tar Heels only graduate nine players off their roster of 33, including standout goalkeeper Adelaide Gay, midfielder Ranee Premji, and midfielder Amber Brooks.