The Geneseo field hockey team returned to action over Labor Day weekend and is looking to repeat the success of its 2012 campaign. The Knights are looking to improve on a 2012 season when they went 12-6 and finished tied for first place in the SUNYAC regular-season standings. This allowed the Knights to reach the SUNYAC semifinals, where they eventually lost to SUNY Cortland.
Since becoming head coach of the Knights in 2008, Jessica Seren has led the team to some of its most successful seasons. The team has reached the SUNYAC tournament for three consecutive years in the past three years.
Sixteen players return to the team this season, including senior captains Katie Farley, Kerry Hosford and Bridget McGovern. McGovern earned first team on the North Atlantic Region all-star team and All-SUNYAC honors in 2012. Sophomore goalie Dayna Mercer returns looking her best after her rookie campaign, in which she achieved second team All-SUNYAC. Joining Mercer with a SUNYAC second team pick is senior Kayla DeAngelis, who led the team with 25 points in 2012.
“Given our strength of schedule this season, we’re looking to just take things one game at a time and focus on being competitive with our opponents,” Seren wrote in an email. “It’s important that each time we step off the field, we are a little better than the day before. Doing those [things] should put us in a good position to make it back to the SUNYAC playoffs.”
Geneseo faced the fifth-ranked team in the region Salisbury University on Friday Aug. 30 for its first match in the Wilkes Tournament. The Knights kept the fight close for a while, trailing 1-0 at the half, but were unable to make a comeback and eventually fell to the Sea Gulls, 5-0.
Geneseo was back at it the next day, looking to close out the weekend with a victory over the hosting Wilkes University Colonels. The Knights fell behind early as Wilkes scored the first goal of the match just over a minute into the game. DeAngelis answered with a goal of her own before scoring another two en route to her first hat trick of the season. McGovern, Hosford and sophomores Sarah Malinak and Elena Hingston also added goals, as Geneseo defeated Wilkes, 7-2.
“The first weekend of games [was] good for us. We were tested right out of the gates and were able to recognize areas for improvement,” Seren said. “At the same time, we were able to draw a lot of positives from them which we’ll build upon as we look to move forward in our young season.”
Geneseo, now 1-1, plays again with a road match at Washington & Jefferson College (2-0) Saturday Sept. 7 and another away match at William Smith College (1-0) on Tuesday Sept. 10.