September 2, 2011

Field Hockey Season Previews

Bryn Mawr
The Bryn Mawr College field hockey program is poised to begin the 2011 season under second-year head coach Marci (Lippert) Scheuing. The Owls look to improve upon their record from 2010 with 11 returners from last season and a strong incoming class. "I am so excited to get the 2011 season going. With the combination of the large incoming class and all 11 underclassmen from last season's roster returning, we are looking to improve in all areas of the game. We added more offensive threats to our roster and also more depth to our midfield. I am also excited to see the newcomers mesh with the talent that we already have."

 

Franklin & Marshall
The 2011 edition of the Franklin & Marshall field hockey team features a combination of an experienced core of returning starters and a large group of newcomers looking to make an immediate impact. The task of turning that combination into a success falls on the shoulders of fourth-year head coach Melissa Mariano. Mariano and the Diplomats put together a solid campaign in 2010 with a 10-7 (5-5 CC) record and were ranked at one point as high as 16th in the nation by the National Field Hockey Coaches Association (NFHCA), but were left to wonder what could have been as four of their seven losses were by just one goal.

 

Haverford
The 2011 outlook for the Haverford College field hockey team includes several promises. The first of those promises involves the schedule which will provide greater challenges to a team that finished 14-5 and in the Centennial Conference tournament's championship game in 2010. Another promise in 2011 is that the Fords won't be resting on their record-setting laurels of a year ago when the squad set numerous team scoring records on the way to a record number of victories.

 

Johns Hopkins
The Johns Hopkins field hockey team returns a strong core in 2011 that contributed to 63 percent of the Blue Jays' offense last season and includes 11 seniors. That senior class brings a wealth of experience to the table and will play a big role on and off the field for head coach Megan Fraser this season. "We have a big senior class, and whether they are a four-year starter or are just getting their first start, they are an entity that really leads this team," Fraser said. "I'm optimistic but realistic and I think we have a lot to prove".

 

Muhlenberg
While crews have been working the last few days to restore electric services to the tens of thousands in the Lehigh Valley who lost power due to Hurricane Irene on Sunday, a different type of restoration project has been afoot in Scotty Wood Stadium since last week.
The Muhlenberg field hockey team had a rough 2010 season, winning only two games. It was uncharacteristic for a program that averaged more than 10 wins a season between 2000 and 2009 and usually is in contention for a Centennial Conference playoff spot. The Mules are eager to return the program to its previous level, and if there is strength in numbers, they should be in good position. The Mules have their largest team in many years – 32 players, including a big group of 13 freshmen.

 

Swarthmore
In 2010, the Swarthmore field hockey team tripled its Centennial Conference win total en route to its most successful season since 2007.  Returning six of its top seven scorers and featuring a roster without a single senior, the Garnet will look to build off of last season's improvement and contend for a Centennial Conference playoff berth in 2011. While the team loses the services of second-team All-Centennial forward Sophia Ferguson '11,  the return of seven starters from last season as well as one of the program's most talented freshmen classes in decade has Garnet fans hoping the squad can shake the foundation of the Conference and earn a postseason bid.

 

Washington College
Coming off its second Centennial Conference semifinal appearance in three years, the Washington College field hockey team is primed for a successful 2011 season - and what went wrong last season has as much to do with that as what went right does.  The Shorewomen's 2-1 overtime win against Gettysburg in last year's first round game of the Centennial Conference Tournament was their first win in five overtime games last season. It was also just their second win in nine games decided by one goal. The Shorewomen finished the 2010 season with a record of 9-10 overall and 6-4 in Centennial Conference play, but were a few breaks away from a record as good as 16-3.

 

NFHCA Division III Preseason Poll

1. Bowdoin, 900 (33)
2. Messiah, 871 (11)
3. Ursinus, 749 (1)
4. Salisbury, 715 (1)
5. Lebanon Valley, 675
6. Tufts, 614
7. Skidmore, 612
8. New Jersey, 544
9. Eastern, 515
10. Middlebury, 454
11. Cortland, 389
12. Christopher Newport, 384
13. Lynchburg, 363
14. Amherst, 274
15. Rowan, 246
16. Juniata, 227
17. Hamilton, 150
18. Catholic, 135
19. Trinity, 93
20. Geneseo, 87