Rams Selected as Skyline Preseason Favorite in Women's Soccer
Rams Selected as Preseason Favorite in Women's Soccer
Lawrenceville, N.J. – Fresh off the first
NCAA Tournament bid in program history, the Farmingdale State
College women's soccer team has been selected as the preseason
favorite to capture the Skyline Conference championship as voted
upon by the conference's head coaches.
Head coach Chris Roche returns for his fourth season at the helm, after leading the team to a 13-8-1 overall record and 8-1 in Skyline Conference play last year. Farmingdale State had just two seniors on last season's Skyline championship team. With another strong crop of newcomers, the Rams expect another strong showing this season. The Rams return three all-conference players from last season in senior Kaitlin O'Brien, and juniors Amanda Biondi and Tricia Pickford. Biondi (14) and Pickford (13) were the team's assist leaders, combining for 27 assists on the Rams' 55 goals.
Bard College and St. Joseph's College tied for second in the preseason poll. In its first season in the Skyline Conference, Bard went 13-6-1 overall and 7-2 in Skyline play. The Raptors advanced to the Skyline championship game where they fell to Farmingdale 1-0 in the final. Bard also made its first-ever postseason appearance by earning an ECAC tournament bid. The Raptors will have to replace three all-conference players in graduated seniors Liz Herber (GK), Laura Dorsey (M) and Rose Lee (F). The team returns its top scorer from last season in senior Mozhdeh Zahedi, an All-Skyline first-team selection.
St. Joseph's-Long Island is also expected to have a strong team this season. The Golden Eagles went 13-7-2 overall and 6-1-2 in Skyline play with their only conference loss coming at Farmingdale State in a close 1-0 game. Junior forward Angie Merante, who scored a team-leading 15 goals last season, earned Skyline Player of the Year honors. St. Joseph's also returns three other first team all-conference players in junior goalkeeper Dana Carney, sophomore defender Daniela Esposito and senior midfielder Meghan Brady.
Purchase College, picked fourth, returns a potent offense, led by sophomore forward Susan Bigler. Bigler, the Skyline Rookie of the Year last season, led the conference in both goals (21) and points (44) as a freshman.
SKYLINE CONFERENCE WOMEN'S SOCCER
2008 PRESEASON COACHES' POLL
Place, Team, Points
1. Farmingdale State (8) 80
2t. Bard (1) 68
2t. St. Joseph's-L.I. (1) 68
4. Purchase 58
5. Sage 49
6. Mount Saint Mary 42
7. Mount Saint Vincent 34
8. Maritime 24
9. Old Westbury 15
10. Yeshiva 12
(first-place votes in parentheses)