Women’s Soccer starts season with huge win to begin the road to SUNYAC playoff berth

“SUNYAC Championship is our goal, it always has been,” head coach Brian McGrane said. McGrane has led the women’s soccer team to the playoffs three times in the past four seasons.

The team made a short playoff run last season after being knocked out in the first round of the SUNYAC playoffs by Plattsburgh State.

This season has a different outlook thus far after the Lakers thrashed Morrisville State by a score of 7-0. “This win shows that we’re a little deeper and more athletic than we have been in previous years, as the stats showed we took 40 shots in our win,” McGrane said.

The Lakers’ attack thrived in their home opener. They dominated possession and moved the ball well from end to end throughout the 90 minutes. Of the 40 shots taken, 19 of them were on target, and seven of the shots found their way to the back of the net.

There are many positives to take from that match, but the team still believes they can improve their play. Senior captain Emma Geyer performed well this past Friday, scoring two goals on four shots.

“Our attack has not shaped completely.” Geyer said. “We need more in game play together as a unit since we have only played against each other. Our chemistry is great, but once we play more games we’ll only get better,”

The Lakers have a strong foundation in all three parts of the field. Depth within the outside backs, wingers and strikers create potential for the Lakers to have a winning season. “With a lot of our starting lineup returning gives us depth, especially with all the transfers and freshman we have had come in here and provide us with great play,” McGrane said.

McGrane and his staff have brought in seven freshmen and seven transfers, five of them being sophomores. “We found some talent and got it, these girls bring some new energy and play to the field,” McGrane said.

The team from top-to-bottom is stacked with focus, speed, athleticism and skill, but, most importantly the Lakers are great at playing simple one, two-touch soccer.

They move the ball well and push up the field with a consistent pace that allows them to spread the ball wide and attack from the wings, hoping to get an opportunity in the box.

McGrane said there is too much talent and experience for this season to go to waste.

“I’m really confident we’ll make it [to SUNYAC Playoffs]. We lost a few good players but we have a lot of players coming back and all the new freshman and transfers too,” senior captain Alexa Restante said. “Overall we’re a really strong team”

There was nothing but assurance and confidence from the Lakers captain as she believes this season’s team has what it takes. Restante also spoke about the team’s consistent effort in practice and how it has reflected on them in games, helping other members of the roster fit in to new roles this season. .

“Our forwards being Gab Corrente and Hannah Almy are going to be relied on to score, our wide players Mackenzie Schaffner and others will have to step up when we need it,” McGrane said.

With seven goals in their first match, the Lakers have started hot offensively, but goals may be harder to come by as they approach a six-game road trip. Their next two matches are this Friday and Saturday in Fredonia, New York, against Penn State Behrend and D’Youville College.

“We’re used to being on the road, this team knows how to deal with it and these games are good for us as a team especially if we can pull out some wins while being away from home,” McGrane said.

Photo: Jake Piacenti | The Oswegonian