By Jenni Chiarello
The Broncs rebounded from losses to Loyola (Md.) (4-9, 2-1 MAAC) and Niagara (5-8, 3-1 MAAC) last weekend with a 5-1 victory Sunday against conference rival Canisius (8-5-1, 3-1 MAAC). Rider (8-4-2, 1-2 MAAC) looks to carry this momentum into its weekend games against Marist and Siena.
“Both are good teams and we dropped both matches last year on the road,” Head Coach Draysone Hounsome said.“Defeating the 2010 MAAC champions [Canisius] on the road the way we did is a huge confidence booster.
Last season’s game against Marist (9-4, 4-0 MAAC) resulted in a 2-1 Rider loss; however, the Broncs are looking forward to trying to gain some retribution. The Redfoxes have been hot lately, winning four of their past five games.
“They are a strong team this year; they’ve already picked up four conference wins,” junior Claire Thompson said. “It’s crucial that we come out with high intensity early in the game.”
Marist forward Amanda Epstein has previously earned MAAC Rookie of the Week honors.
Junior Abi Cottam is confident in the team’s ability to come out of this weekend successfully.
“We know we are talented enough to beat both Marist and Siena,” she said. “It’s just a case of believing and keeping our composure for the weekend.”
Siena defeated Rider 4-1 last season. This season Siena is 7-5 and 2-2 in the MAAC.
“Siena will be a completely different team this year, so it’s also tough to know what to expect prior to getting the scouting report,” Thompson said.
Cottam is confident in her team.
“Our team has so many strengths: our defense, including our goalkeeper, is getting stronger each game,” Cottam said. “Our midfielders are strong and skillful, both defensively and offensively, and we know we can trust them to control the game for us. Our forwards are fast and versatile. All of these things will help us beat both Marist and Siena.”
Junior Jennifer Nichols is also happy with her team’s strong athletic play.
“One of our biggest strengths is our ability to possess the ball for long periods of time during the game,” she said. “This will absolutely help us beat Marist and Siena.”