By Michael Mack
Expectations are high for Rider’s field hockey team, ranked 11th in the nation according to FieldHockeyCorner.com. The Broncs are coming off of a very successful season, including an impressive post season run. The Broncs lost in the finals of the Northeast Conference (NEC) tournament last season to rival Lock Haven.
According to senior goal-keeper Lyndsie Johnson, the team is aiming for even more this season.
“As a team, our goal is to win the NEC tournament,” she said. “[The team is] off to a good start.”
They have won their first two games by very decisive 8-2 and 4-1 scores, over Lehigh and Temple, respectively.
Johnson recorded her seventh career shutout in a 3-0 win over Central Michigan. The win marks the first time field hockey has started off 3-0 since the 2004 season.
The Broncs will face off against Hofstra on Sept. 13.
The golf team is looking to turn a season full of impressive individual performances into a winning season for the entire team. Last season, the Broncs finished sixth out of nine in the MAAC tournament. Juniors Brent Wolgast, Brian Accorsini and Jordan Wycoff all had performances that placed them in the top 25 in a tournament. With these returning athletes, the team has high hopes for this season.
The Broncs tee off their season tomorrow at the Rutgers Invitational.
Like the golf team, the cross country teams have the individual talent on both the men’s and women’s sides. Now they need to translate that talent into team success. The men’s team got its top runner back in junior Christian Gonzalez, who finished first for the team in all six of the meets he competed in. For the women’s team, sophomore sensation Heather Giovagnoli is back and has high hopes for the team.
“We have a young team but a lot of talent,” she said. “We’re hoping to live up to last year’s achievements at our conference meet.”
The women’s team finished second of 10 teams at the MAAC Championships last season. The team’s next meet is Sept. 19.
The volleyball team is looking to bounce back from a disappointing season. After starting last year’s season at 6-2, the team hit a rough patch and went 3-17, dropping all of its last nine matches.
However, the team has nine returning players from last year and six incoming freshmen.
They have high hopes that this combination of experience and new talent will turn the team around. The team is off to a 1-3 start and its next match is on Sept. 11 at Providence.
Both men’s and women’s soccer teams are in the midst of rebuilding.
The women’s team is coming off of a 2-14-3 season. However, it is obvious that this is not the same team as last year, as more than half the team is made up of freshmen. The Broncs are off to a 1-2 start and their next game is on Sept. 13 at N.J.I.T.
While the men’s team is also made up of mostly freshmen, it may be looking for more immediate results.
Junior captain Jim Bradley is very optimistic.
“Our freshmen are very talented and have a good head on their shoulders,” he said. “Our expectations are to be in the top four of the MAAC and make the conference playoffs.”
The men’s team is off to an 0-1 start and its next game is Sept. 11 in Lexington, Va.
The men’s team is coming off a 3-16 season. The team added two freshmen this year and hope to be led by the experience of its returning players. The team lost a lot of close matches last year and will look to turn those into wins this year.
The women’s team is coming off of a 3-14 season. The team added four new players including three incoming freshmen. Although the team is not the most experienced, it hopes to make up for that with sheer talent.
Both teams start their seasons Sept. 13 in Philadelphia.