Jacqui White, Assistant Sports Editor
Utica College’s women’s soccer team is ready for their 2018 season.
After going 5-11-1 last year, the team is determined to improve and make noise in the Empire 8 conference.
Defensive player Brooke Catalano, a senior who studied abroad last season, explained that the team has been “pushing more” after missing the Empire 8 championship. Even though Catalano away in Ireland last season, she kept updated with how her team was doing.
“Last year, our team motto was ‘All In,’” Catalano said. “This year, the motto is ‘Yes We Can.’”
The game that forced the Pioneers out of the championship came against the Alfred University Saxons. While the Pioneers lost the game 4-2, but the experience made them look forward to this season to try even harder to push themselves.
Catalano explained that since last season the team has started to be more competitive with each other, which helps with how they play. Their communication on and off the field also helps with how they communicate while playing.
With it being her senior year, Catalano hopes to accomplish a goal she’s had since freshman year.
“My personal goal is to actually score a goal while being a defensive player,” she said. “Or if I can’t do that, I would want to make a good pass to someone who then makes a goal.”
Head coach Eileen Blumenauer echoed Catalano’s thoughts on how the team has been working together more to try and grow from last season.
Blumenauer explained that while her team isn’t practicing to win against any specific team, but they are lucky that the teams they play outside of the Empire 8 are built similar to those they will face in the conference.
“The ‘All In’ motto we had and the growth from last season has inspired the team to grow even more this season,” Blumenauer said.
Blumenauer also mentioned how the players themselves have become more disciplined and dedicated. They have expectations for each other and help one another set goals to reach throughout the season.
The head coach said that the team is lucky with their schedule, as all other the teams are equally as good as they and they can continue to push themselves each game to try and improve themselves.
The women’s soccer team has opened the season with 1-2-1 record and will face off against the SUNY Potsdam Bears at home on Friday, Sept. 14, at 6 p.m.