The Geneseo field hockey team’s playoff run came to a screeching halt when the team lost the SUNYAC Tournament Championship to third-seeded SUNY New Paltz on Saturday Nov. 8. While the final score was 4-0, it did not reflect the fight the Knights put up. This game followed the Knights knocking off top-seeded SUNY Cortland in the semifinals on Nov. 5 by a score of 2-1. Although the season is now over, head coach Jess Seren could not be happier with the way her team played. “The game was closer than the score indicates and we were just not able to execute offensively, which is something that hurt us earlier in the season,” Seren said. “New Paltz was able to capitalize and [New Paltz’s] junior goalkeeper Alayna Wageman played one of her best games of the season, getting named the SUNYAC Tournament MVP.”
This game gave the Knights a final record of 9-12 in a season that no one expected them to get to the SUNYAC Tournament, let alone the championship game. Geneseo was able to beat the odds and to get to that game. Seren thinks that this game was a turning point for her team.
“It’s the second time we have made it to the championship since I have been here,” she said. “To make it to the final game as underdogs really gives us positive momentum going into spring season. We went into the tournament with nothing to lose.”
The Knights will have a spring ball season—a few games in March and April where they are allowed to practice and play against other collegiate teams of their choosing. This will be a good time to get some of the under classmen onto the field and to let them get game experience before next season.
There are three players coming back who were named All-SUNYAC selections. Junior forward Sarah Malinak and freshman midfielder Morgan Maley landed first-team selections while junior goalie Dayna Mercer earned second-team selection. Seren is confident that with these three back, her team is in a good place for next season.
“These three were recognized with this honor because of their consistency. That is one of the biggest things for us; they put us in positions to win games,” Seren said. “They might not have had the highest stats in the conference, but their hard work and leadership helped us get to the position in the tournament.”
The Knights close out the season as the SUNYAC runner-up and will look to make a run at the third championship in the program’s history next season.