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October 2010 Archives

W-VB: Warriors Enjoy a Senior Moment

In their final matches, Joy, Ruta and Schirone shine in LEC victory

vbseniors72_5513.jpgWILLIMANTIC, Conn. -- The Eastern Connecticut State University women's volleyball team outscored the University of Southern Maine 19-2 close out the first-set win and went on to a 25-7, 25-15, 25-22 Little East Conference sweep in the season-finale for both teams Saturday at Francis E. Geissler Gymnasnium.

In pre-game ceremonies, Eastern honored its three outgoing seniors and their families.

Eastern (13-15, 1-6 little east) and Southern Maine (6-23, 0-7 little east) were the two teams failing to qualify for the six-team LEC tournament, which gets underway Tuesday with first-round matches. The Warriors missed out for the first time ever.

After winning the first two sets, Eastern struggled in the third set, finally shaking free from a 19-all tie with the help of two kills from Christina Schirone (Pelham, NY), one of three Eastern seniors playing the final matches of their careers. Eastern closes out its home season with ten wins in 15 matches.

Senior Rachael Joy (Huntington Station, NY) and junior Julie Forler (Hartland) led a balanced Eastern effort with six kills each, Schirone totaling  five kills and five service aces. Junior Gianna Trombino (East Moriches, NY) had 22 assists, a team-high 12 digs and contributed four of the team's season-high total of 18 aces. Joy had ten digs, senior libero  Alyssa Ruta (Holbrook, NY) and sophomore Danielle Bourne (Branford) adding seven each.

Senior Shannon Shuttle paced the Huskies with seven kills and five digs, senior Danielle Netland (Cumberland, NH) collecting 12 assists. Junior Kayla Cotsis and freshman Meghan Rumore each added five digs.

Eastern Conn. 3, U. of Southern Maine 0

Southern Maine (6-23, 0-7 little east)             7    15    22
Eastern Conn. (13-15, 1-6 little east)           25    25    25


Men's Soccer: Warriors Emerge, 1-0

RIC's loss gives Warriors home field advantage against Anchormen


LEC25.jpgMANSFIELD, Conn. -- Eastern Connecticut State University's 1-0 win over visiting Plymouth State University, coupled with Rhode Island College's 2-1 overtime loss, gives the Warriors the No. 2 seed in the four-team Little East Conference playoffs, which begin with semifinal-round matches Wednesday.

At right: Junior keeper Carl Appel rises above the fray in the first half of Saturday's 1-0 victory over Plymouth State. (Stephen Goomrigian photo).

Eastern (13-3-2, 5-1-1 little east) faces No. 3 Rhode Island for the fourth straight year in the semifinals, hosting the Anchormen Wednesday at 6 p.m.. The winner faces the winner of Wednesday's other 6 p.m. semifinal-round game between No. 1 Keene State College and No. 4 UMass Dartmouth in the final Saturday at the site of the highest remaining seed.

For tournament details, click on Little East Tournament Centra

Eastern has won two of the previous semifinal round matches against Rhode Island, having won both times at home.

Eastern rides a seven-game unbeaten (6-0-1) streak into its fourth straight LEC post-season tournament. The Warriors are the defending champion and winners of two of the last three tournaments.

Sophomore midfielder Jon DeCasanova (Glastonbury) broke a scoreless tie with just over four minutes left Saturday with a blast that hit the left post and skimmed past Plymouth sophomore keeper Bjorn Ohlsson. The goal was the seventh this year and second game-winner for DeCasanova. The goal came on a throw-in in front of the Plymouth (5-11-1, 1-6-0 little east) from freshman Tom Vear (Monson, MA).

With the game scoreless, sophomore Cory Tobler (Portland) couldn't connect on two great chances, one coming with five minutes left in the first half on a shot that skidded just to the right of the right post, and one when he hit the right post on a shot from the left of the goal. Plymouth best chances came seconds apart with 13 minutes left in the first half. A perfect through-ball from senior Tommy Schrey looked like it would spring freshman Moses Igah (Abuja, Nigeria), but the ball caromed off Igah's heel as he made his break. Igah then recovered the ball, carried to the end line and crossed it in front back to Schrey. Schrey's shot from in close, however, was saved by Eastern junior keeper Carl Appel (West Windsor, NJ).

Appel made five saves for his 18th career shutout and 40th career win (40-11-5). Appel is 10-3-2 this year with  six shutouts, a 0.74 goals-against average and .860 save percentage.

Field Hockey: Warriors Fall in Finale

fhseniors_4415.jpgLEC25.jpgMANSFIELD, Conn. -- Senior Meghan Feehan's sixth goal of the season in the ninth minute stood up as Worcester State University (7-12, 4-7 little east) edged Eastern Connecticut State University (4-14, 1-10 little east), 1-0, in a Little  Conference match which was the season-finale for both teams.

Above Senior Rachel Cocola (5) and the Warriors share a hug following the final match of 2010.

Worcester's season-ending victory left it a game shy of qualifying for the LEC tournament. Eastern missed the playoffs for the sixth straight season.

Feehan finished as the team's co-leader in goals when knocked the only goal of the match past Eastern senior goalie Tia Mucciarone (Franklin, MA) from the middle of the circle with just over eight minutes gone in the match.

Eastern's best chance to tie the match came with 6:30 left when senior Paige Booth's  (Hollis, NH) shot rolled under Worcester senior goalie Kat Masterjohn but went just wide of the right post. The Warriors earned two penalty corners in the final minute of play but could not convert either of those two opportunities into shots.

Eastern's six seniors were honored prior to the final match of their careers: Paige Booth (Hollis, NH), Rachel Cocola (South Windsor), Ashley Del Vecchio (Fairfield), Dana McLaughliln (West Hartford), Mucciarone and Melanie Proud (Wall Township, NJ).


Men's XC: Miller's TIme Tops Warriors

Sophomore leads team at New England Alliance/LEC Championships


LEC25.jpgPAXTON, Mass. - Sophomore Nick Miller (Norwich) led Eastern Connecticut State University with a 33rd-place finish at the New England Alliance/Little East Conference Men's Cross Country Championships Saturday at Moore State Park.

At right: Nick Miller (Stephen Goomrigian photo)

Eastern's third finisher in the race as a freshman, Miller paced 12 Eastern runners at the tape. He was timed in 28:30 over the 5 mile layout, placing 33rd in the Alliance scoring and 22nd in the Little East Conference scoring.

The top 20 finishers in the Alliance are named All-Alliance and the top 7 in the conference are named All-Conference.

Eastern placed eighth among 13 Alliance teams and fifth among six in the conference. Keene State College won its second Alliance and conference titles in three years, besting defending champion University of Southern Maine in both.

Following Miller for Eastern was first-year junior Conor Hackett (Bolton) and senior Ken Landry (East Hampton). Hackett was 46th overall (28:55) and Landry 58th (29:20).

Eastern competes in the ECAC Division III Championships Saturday at Colt State Park in Bristol, RI.

Run over 5.0 miles

Team Results

New England Alliance

1. Keene State College 36; 2. U. of Southern Maine 65; 3. Westfield State U. 117; 4. Massachusetts Dartmouth 123; 5. Bridgewater State U. 141; 6. Fitchburg Staet U. 149; 7. Rhode Island College 201; 8. EASTERN CONN. 218; 9. Massachusetts Maritime Academy 243; 10. Salem State U. 254; 11. Worcester State U. 306; 12. Mass College of Liberal Arts 374; 13. Massachusetts Boston 395.

Little East Conference

1. Keene State College 25; 2. U. of Southern Maine 45; 3. Massachusetts Dartmouth 73; 4. Rhode Island College 116; 5. EASTERN CONN. 124; 6. Masschusetts Boston 190.

Women's XC: Quinones a Repeater


LEC25.jpgPAXTON, Mass. - Eastern Connecticut State University junior Amanda Quinones (Trumbull) repeated All-New England Alliance honors Saturday, running to a 12th-place finish at the New England Alliance/Little East Conference Women's Cross Country Championships at Moore State Park.

At right: Amanda Quinones (Stephen Goomrigian photo)

Quinones, a second-year transfer, improved five spots from a year ago, when she was 17th overall. Saturday, Quinones was timed in 20:17 over the 5,000 meter layout  to lead ten Eastern runners.

As a team, Eastern was seventh among 13 teams in the Alliance and fourth among five in the Little East Conference tabulations.  Keene State College won its 11th straight Alliance and conference titles in easy fashion by taking the top three spots and four of the last first five.

The top 20 finishers are accorded Alliance honors and top seven are named all-conference. Quinones was tenth among conference finishers.

Behind Quinones, three Eastern runners finished within less than a minute of each other: freshman Katie France (Portland), sophomore Cora Gingras (East Hampton), and freshman Alexa Palasky (Griswold).

Eastern competes in the ECAC Division III Championships Saturday at Colt State Park in Bristol, RI.

Run over 5,000 meters

Team Results
New England Alliance

1. Keene State College 19; 2. U. of Southern Maine 82; 3. Bridgewater State U. 111; 3. Westfield State U. 111; 5. Massachusetts Dartmouth 122; 6. Worcester State U. 158; 7. EASTERN CONN. 176; 8. Rhode Island College 178; 9. Salem State U. 261; 10. Framingham State U. 315; 11. Fitchburg State U. 323; 12. Mass College of Liberal Arts 329; 13. Massachusetts Maritime Academy 378.

Little East Conference

1. Keene State College 18; 2. U. of Southern Maine 64; 3. Massachusetts Dartmouth 80; 4. EASTERN CONN. 106; 5. Rhode Island College 107.

W-Swimming: Rivers, Schapp Excel

Warriors drop 142-114 decision to Assumption in first home meet of year

rivers_head_72_4202.jpgWILLIMANTIC, Conn. -  Freshman Amanda Rivers (Meriden) won the 50 and 100 yard freestyle events and All-New England senior Amy Arisco (Wallingford) captured the 50 yard butterfly Saturday when the Eastern Connecticut State University women's swim team opened its home season with a 142-114 loss to Assumption College at the Sports Center pool.

Rivers (at left), Schapp (below)

Assumption (1-0) swimmers recorded the fastest times in nine of 12 individual events and one of two relays. Rivers won the 50 freestyle in a time of 26.26 and the 100 freestyle in a time of 58:53 and Arisco claimed the 50 butterfly with a mark of 28.09. Eastern ended the meet schapp_head_72_4225.jpgby winning the 200 freestyle relay with an all-freshman unit of Michelle Schapp (Torrington), Becky Odgers (Shelton), Rivers and Jacqueline Tromp (Bohemia, NY).

Assumption, which captured 107 of a possible  146 points in last Saturday's Blue Jay Pentathlon, went 1-2-3 in the 1,000 freestyle and 1-2 in the 200 freestyle, 100 backstroke, 100 breaststroke and 500 freestyle. The Greyhounds are members of Division II.

Schapp followed Rivers at the finish with a second-place showing in the 100 freestyle and was third in the 500 freestyle and third in the 200 freestyle; in addition to winning the 50 butterfly, Arisco was second in the 100 butterfly; Tromp placed second in the 50 backstroke and third in the 100 backstroke; freshman Colleen King (Barkhamsted) was second in the 50 breaststroke, junior Nadine Menard (Woodstock)  third in the 100 breaststroke, and first-year sophomore Lauren Curtis (Hamden) fourth in the 1,000 freestyle.

Arisco also swam the second-fastest time in the 200 individual medley and was awarded first place ahead of Assumption freshman Monique Haney, who swam the event on an exhibition basis. Officially, Haney won the 1,000 freestyle and 100 butterfly. Haney was the individual winner at Saturday's Blue Jay Pentathlon, with Arisco taking third.

Eastern visits Western Connecticut State University Saturday at 1 p.m.





Women's Soccer: Warriors Seal the Deal

They take their place in history with first-ever undefeated regular season 

team_ws72dpi 1033.jpg PLYMOUTH, N.H. -- The Eastern Connecticut State University women's soccer team  (15-0-3, 6-0-1 little east)) completed their its undefeated regular season in the program's 25-year history, gaining at least a share of the Little East Conference regular-season title title for the fourth time in eight years with a 3-1 victory over Plymouth State University.
Eastern finished undefeated (6-0-1) in the conference regular season for the third time in six years by winning its second-ever outright LEC regular-season title. No.-1seeded Eastern, ranked No. 1 in New England and No. 10 nationally, draws a first-round bye and will play Thursday at home at 4 p.m. against the winner of a Tuesday first-round match between No. 4 UMass Boston and No. 5 University of Southern Maine. For tournament details, click on Little East Tournament Centra

It is only the second time that Eastern has earned the top seed.

The highest remaining seed hosts the Saturday final.

downergoal_72Picture 758.jpgThree of the game's four goals were scored in a span of 3:20 early in the second half. Eastern scored its first goal with less than five minutes left in the first half and made it 2-0 seven minutes into the second half. After Plymouth cut the lead in half at 54:57, the Warriors re-gained the two-goal cushion on freshman Nicole Leonard's (Rutherford, NJ) fourth goal of the season on an assist from senior back Lauren Hickey (Southwick, MA).

Above Eastern never looked back after Chelsea Downer scored the first goal of the match late in the first half. (Liz Cutler photos)

First-year sophomore Chelsea Downer (Colchester) had given Eastern a 1-0 lead in the 41st minute with her second goal of the year and sophomore Taylor Buchanan (Ellington) made it 2-0 with her team-leading13th of the season. Buchanan is rated fifth in the conference in goals.

Junior Theresa Pagnozzi (Waterford) remained undefeated this year (12-0-2) and in her career (13-0-2) by combining with sophomore Mackenzie MacLeod (Northfield) in net. Neither keeper was credited with a save. MacLeod played the final six minutes.

The win was the 12th straight for Eastern over Plymouth (7-10-0, 2-5-0 little east). The Warriors had come away with 1-0 victories the previous three times they met Plymouth on its home field. In the last ten years under 11th-year head coach Chris D'Ambrosio, the Warriors are 56-8-6 in regular-season LEC play.

Eastern is one of four programs among this week's NSCAA Division III Top 25 to complete an undefeated regular season. The Warriors are joined by No. 1 Messiah College (17-0-0), No. 2 Hardin-Simmons University (17-0-0) and No. 4 Otterbein College (16-0-1).  Third-ranked Illinois Wesleyan University began the week unbeaten but was tripped up Wednesday by No. 9 Wheaton College (IL) and fell to 15-1-1.

The win ties the program record for victories in a season. It is only the third undefeated season in the history of men's and women's soccer at Eastern.  The men's team posted back-to-back unbeaten regular seasons in 1968 (11-0-1) and 1969 (11-0-0) on the way to New England championships and final records of 15-1-2 and 16-2-0, respectively.

Women's Volleyball: Warriors Fall in 4

They hope to halt skid in Saturday's season-finale against USM

forler head 72_2084.jpgWILLIMANTIC, Conn. -The Eastern Connecticut State University WARRIORlogo2009_72dpi.jpgwomen's volleyball team attacked at just .083 in losing its fifth match in the last six with 15-25, 28-26, 15-25, 23-25 verdicts against Wesleyan University Wednesday night at Francis E. Geissler Gymnasium.

Above: Julie Forler

Coming off a four-set Little East Conference loss Tuesday night at UMass Dartmouth, Eastern (12-15) shook off a decisive first-set loss to even the match with Wesleyan (12-18) before the Cardinals captured the final two sets.

In the first set, Wesleyan scored the first seven points and Eastern never got closer than six points thereafter. In the second set, Eastern led 17-10 but Wesleyan bounced back. There were six ties thereafter before the Warriors scored the final two points. In the decisive third set, Wesleyan outscored Eastern 9-1 after the Warriors had pulled to within 16-14. Attempting to force a final 15-point fifth set, Eastern trailed by five, 23-18 in the fourth set but recovered to tie the set at 23-23 before the Cardinals scored the final two points.

In the second-set victory, sophomore middle Katie Wilson (Pittsburg, CA) had four kills without an error, two blocks, and two service aces and junior Britt Carrier (Southington) added three kills without an error and five digs, junior libero Taylor Abelli (Cheshire) 11 digs and sophomore Shannon Burke (Manchester) and freshman Erynn Miller (Stratford) five digs each. Burke also recorded two blocks. In the match, senior Julie Forler (Hartland) had a season-high seven kills.

Abelli  recorded her 1,500th career dig in the match with two digs in the first set. She is ranked seventh all time.

Wesleyan has won three in a row and four of five, while Eastern has lost three straight and five of six.

Eastern closes out the season Saturday when it hosts the University of Southern Maine at 1 p.m. in a Little East Conference match.

Wesleyan U. 3, Eastern Conn. 1

Wesleyan (8-12)    25    26   25    25
Eastern (12-15)      15   28    15    23


Statistical leaders

Wesleyan U.

Ruby Hernandez  30 digs, 32 reception attempts with a .938 perentage
Laura Yim   48 assists
Kim Farris  8 blocks
Monica Leslie  7 blocks
Alissa Santucci 13 kills with a .370 attack pct.
Casey Reed  13 kills wth a .216 attack pct.
Lesley Faulkner 9 kills

Eastern Conn.

Shannon Burke 21 digs, 3 blocks, 9 kills
Taylor Abelli  19 digs, 24 reception attempts with 0 errors
Britt Carrier  17 digs, 35 assists,2 aces
Rachael Joy  15 digs, 6 kills, 14 reception attempts withi 1 error
Katie Wilson  11 kills with a .450 attack pct., 5 blocks, 2 aces
Erynn Miller  17 reception attempts with 1 error, 5 kills
Julie Forler  7 kills





Men's Soccer: 11 Contribute Points

Warriors score two early goals and two late ones in 8-1 rout of Becker

vear72dpi_5390.jpgMANSFIELD, Conn. --  Freshman forward Tom Vear (Monson, MA) had three goals on three shots, junior midfielder Sean Collins (Bristol) three assists and senior keeper Rick Emery (Brewster, NY) made four saves in his first career start as the Eastern Connecticut State University men's soccer team extended its unbeaten streak to six with an 8-1 non-conference victory over Becker College Wednesday afternoon at the Mansfield Outdoor Complex.

Above: Freshman forward Tom Vear (22) is challenged by Becker defender Aldo Karkanjozi in Wednesday's 8-1 victory. Vear had three goals to lead the Warriors. 


Ranked No. 6 in New England, Eastern (12-3-2) got two goals from Vear 69 seconds apart midway through the first half and freshman forward Romaro Johnson (Bridgeport) scored his first two collegiate goals 50 seconds apart late in the match as Eastern defeated Becker (9-7-1) for the third straight season.

In his first collegiate start (ninth appearance), Emery made four saves for his second win of the season and of his career without a loss.

In all, 11 players were credited with at least one point. Junior team scoring leader Matt Furman (Montville) had two assists to improve his team-leading point total to 25 and team-leading assist total to seven in the 11 matches in which he has appeared. Junior back Aaron Smiles (Bedford, MA) also picked up his sixth assist of  the season when he teamed with Furman on Vear's second goal. Smiles played 62 minutes despite wearing a cast on his left arm after fracturing his wrist in Saturday's 2-1 Little East Conference win over UMass Dartmouth.

Also recording their first collegiate points with assists off the bench were freshman midfielder Kyle Surprenant (Coventry) and freshman forward Mitch Power (Douglas, MA)..

Eastern closes out the regular season Saturday at 4 p.m., hosting Plymouth State University in a Little East Conference match.


Women's Soccer: 17 Down, 1 to Go

With one match left, Warriors look for first-ever unbeaten regular season


WARRIORlogo2009_72dpi.jpgMANSFIELD, Conn. - The Eastern Connecticut State University women's soccer team moved to within one game of its first undefeated regular season in the program's 25-year history with a 1-0 non-conference victory over Manhattanville College Wednesday night at the Mansfield Outdoor Complex

Above: Eastern's four seniors closed out their regular-season home careers on the winning end of a 1-0 victory. From left: Amber Petrizzo, Megan Pavia, Stephanie Norell and Lauren Hickey..

Ranked No. 1 in New England and No. 10 nationally (equaling its highest national rank ever), Eastern (14-0-3) rode a first-half goal from sophomore midfielder Kelly Wallace (South Windsor) to its eighth shutout of the season.  The 1-0 victory was Eastern's fourth this year and the one-goal win was its  eighth.

A 2-0 loser to Manhattanville (3-13-1) a year ago, Eastern outshot the Valiants 16-6 and junior keeper Theresa Pagnozzi (Waterford) made three saves for her fifth shutout of the season. Pagnozzi is 11-0-2 this year, 12-0-2 lifetime.

Manhattanville, under former Eastern head coach Matt Paton, had two good chances to score and Eastern one before the Warriors finally broke through in the 27th minute. First-year sophomore forward Chelsea Downer (Colchester) set up the play with a pass to sophomore forward Daniela Marchitto (Orange) on the right wing. Marchitto carried to the end line before sliding a ground ball to Wallace, who one-timed her fifth goal of the season (fourth game-winner) past Valiant senior keeper Ali Bromson.

Both of Pagnozzi's aves in the  second half were outstanding. She dove to her left to rob senior forward Holly Nonis eight minutes into the period, barely getting her hands on the ball and knocking it clear. Minutes later, Nonis found Deborah Gilwit in space, forcing Pagnozzi to make a diving save to her right on the freshman forward's shot.

Marchitto nearly gave the Warriors a 1-0 lead four minutes into play, but Bromson turned the bid from inside the box away with a dive to her right. 

In the second half, Eastern threatened to pad  its lead, but Marchitto, Wallace, sophomore forward Taylor Buchanan (Ellington) and freshman forward Nicole Leonard (Rutherford, NJ) couldn't convert. Bromson robbed Marchitto, Wallace and Buchanan, and a wide-open Leonard sent a pass from freshman midfielder Tamar Merheb (Bethel) over the crossbar.

Bromson,  who shut out Eastern last year, made nine save.

Eastern closes out the regular season Saturday at Plymouth State University, looking to complete the unbeaten season and nail down the Little East Conference regular-season title and No. 1 seed in the upcoming LEC tournament. Eastern has trimmed Plymouth by 1-0 scores in each of the last three meetings on the Panthers' field.





W-Volleyball: Sluggish Start Costly

Warriors lose to UMass Dartmouth for the first time in 22 years

abelli_miller_72_5344.jpgNORTH DARTMOUTH, Mass. -The Eastern Connecticut State University women's volleyball team fell into an early hole after two sets and could not climb out in an 11-25, 13-25, 25-20, 22-25 Little East Conference contest Tuesday night at the Tripp Athletic Center.

At left: Against UMass, Taylor Abelli moved into seventh place all-time digs, with 1,498. In background is freshman Erynn Miller, named Little East Conference Rooke-of-the-Week Tuesday.

The win is the first for UMass (22-8, 3-3 little east) after 33 consecutive losses at the hands of Eastern (12-14, 0-6 little east) dating back 22 years, and eliminates the Warriors from conference tournament contention for the first time.

After losing the first two sets in convincing fashion, Eastern gained its rhythm in the third set, collecting 17 kills and attacking at .295 in a five-point victory. In the fourth set, the Warriors stayed close throughout, until  the Corsairs scored four straight points that snapped a 20-20 tie.

In the third-set victory, Eastern scored five straight points to snap a 10-10 tie and never trailed thereafter. Sophomore Katie Wilson (Pittsburg, CA) had two kills in that decisive 5-0 run, with sophomore Danielle Bourne (Branford) and freshman Erynn Miller (Stratford)  adding one each. Miller -- named last week's Little East Conference Rookie-of-the-Week -- Bourne and Wilson combined for 12 kills in that third set, with Miller, junior Taylor Abelli (Cheshire) and junior Samantha Slonski (Griswold) each digging up five balls.

The Warriors never recovered after  UMass scored seven of the first eight points in the first set and the Corsairs scored five straight points in the second set to build an insurmountable 15-8 lead.

Defensively, the Warriors commited only three reception errors in the match and recorded 11 blocks.

Wilson had seven kills, and Miller six . Abelli led all Eastern players with 18 digs,moving into seventh place all-time with 1,498 career digs. Slonski had 12 digs and Miller ten. Wilson totalled five block assists and one solo and Abelli and Miller combined to handle 52 recetpions with only three errors.

Eastern hosts Wesleyan University Wednesday at 7 p.m/. and closes out the season Saturday at 1 p.m. when it hosts the University of Southern Maine.


Field Hockey: Late Explosion Decisive

Warriors score three goals in final five minutes in 4-0 victory


WARRIORlogo2009_72dpi.jpgPAXTON, Mass. -  The Eastern Connecticut State University field hockey team dominated play throughout but could not pull away until scoring three goals in the final five minutes in a 4-0 non-conference victory over Anna Maria College Monday evening.

At right: Rachel Cocola (5)

The victory in its final road contest of the season ends a four-game Eastern (4-13) losing streak, with the win total representing one more than a year ago. Anna Maria (2-15) has lost 14 of its last 15 and drops to 0-4 all-time against Eastern.

Eastern players were credited with all 19 of the shots in the match and the Warriors took 20 of the game's 21 penalty corners but led by only one goal heading into the final five minutes of play. At that point, senior forward Rachel Cocola (South Windsor) scored her first career goal (she has spent most of her career at sweeperback) and junior midfielder Liz Bolduc (Stonington) followed up with her second goal of the season 39 seconds later to ice the win. Senior forward Paige Booth's (Hollis, NH) added an insurance goal off the bench with 26 seconds left.

Junior back Erika Malito (Killingly) helped stake the Warriors to a 1-0 lead five minutes into the second half when her penalty corner set up junior forward Ali Chapman (Watertown) for her fourth goal of the season..

Junior goalie Danielle Reichardt (Ocean Township, NJ) didn't need to make a save to record her first career shutout.

 Eastern closes out its 14th intercollegiate season Saturday, hosting Worcester State University in a Little East Conference match at 1 p.m.





shoop_podium72_5278.jpgAbove: Leanne Shoop makes her Hall of Fame acceptance speech.

The E-Club Hall of Fame staged its 17th ceremony Sunday afternoon at the Betty Tipton Room in the Student Center. The Class of 2010 included Denise Lamontagne '90, Thomas Reynolds '83, Bernice Laferriere '93, Brian Cassidy '87, Jason Brasher '92, and Leanne Shoop '92. Lamontagene was a four-year softball starter at second base and member of the 1990 national chamption team; Reynolds was a four-year baseball starter who led the Warriors to the 1982 national championship; Laferriere was a four-year starter who helped Eastern to consecutive NCAA Division III Final Four appearances; Brasher was a four-year soccer starter who ranks third all-time in scoring; and Shoop was a four-year starter in the outfield who still holds the program record for hits, and was a teammate of Lamontage on the 1990 national title team. Former two-time track & field All-America Bonnie Edmondson '87 served as Mistress of Ceremonies. Also honored at the banquet were the charter members of the Hall of Fame Class of 1986:  former basketball star Kathleen Regan '79; Thomas Nevers, the first soccer coach in program history; the late former athletic director and coach Francis Geissler; former basketball and baseball star George Dargati '60, and former baseball pitcher and major leaguer John Caneira '74.


W-Swimming: Freshmen Shine at SJC

Warriors place second, Arisco third individually at Blue Jay Pentathlon



 WEST HARTFORD, Conn. --  Four freshmen were among the team's top three finishers in six individual events and senior Amy Arisco (Wallingford) placed third in the pentathlon when the Eastern Connecticut State University women's swim team opened its season at the Blue Jay Pentathlon, hosted by Saint Joseph College

Above: Amy Arisco

odgers_head_raw_4204.JPGFeaturing 16 newcomers on a 28-person roster, Eastern took second place in a five-team field, which was won easily by Division II Assumption College. Eastern, who won ten straight Blue Jay titles before sharing last year's title with Assumpion, totaled 31 points, with the Greyhounds amassing 107 points. Host Saint Joseph had six points, and Western New England College 2. Husson University did not score.

Above: Becky Odgers

Among 12 spots on three relays which placed second, nine of them were freshmen:  Becky Odgers (Shelton), Amanda Rivers (Meriden), Michelle Schapp (Torrington) and Jacqueline Tromp (Bohemia, NY) each participated in two relays, and Colleen King (Barkhamsted) one.

Arisco and junior Nadine Menard (Woodstock) are among the most accomplished returning swimmers from last year's club which placed a program-best third-place finish at the  NEISDA Division II-III Championships.  That duo combined to earn All-NEISDA honors a total of 11 times a year ago.

A two-time Blue Jay Pentathlon winner who claimed second place by a second last year to Assumption's Jennifer Ryan (a sophomore this year), Arisco totaled 13 of the 19 points accumulated by the team in the five individual 100 yard events. She was third in four events and fifth in the fifth.

Menard totaled four points in three events and Rivers picked up the final two by placing fourth in the 100 freestyle.
Paced by pentathlon champion Monique Haney, a freshman, Assumption captured all three relays and  at least the top two spots in every event. The Greyounds went 1-2-3 in the 100 yard backstroke.

Six of Assumption's top eight swimmers in the meet were either freshmen or sophomores. Haney won the backstroke, butterfly, freestyle and individual medley and was second in the breaststroke. Haney totaled a 5:22.33 in the five events, Ryan 5:23.99 and Arisco 5:29.83. Menard came in with a strong fifth-place showing (5:40.12). Among the freshmen Odgers was eighth overall (5:48.74).
Eastern opens its home season Saturday at noon, hosting Assumption College.


W-Volleyball: Plymouth Escapes in 3

In LEC, Panthers come out on top in three sets decided by two points each


WILLIMANTIC, Conn. -- Plymouth State WARRIORlogo2009_72dpi.jpgUniversity remained one game behind Little East Conference co-leaders UMass Boston and Keene State College Saturday afternoon after topping Eastern Connecticut State University in three sets that were all decided by two points at Francis E. Geissler Gymnasium.

At right: Samantha Slonski

Plymouth (16-11, 4-1 little east), which reached last year's LEC tournament final, survived set point in the first set, scoring the final three points after trailing 28-27. There were 16 ties in the first set. Eastern (12-13, 0-5 little east)  led by four points, 20-16, before the Panthers used a 5-1 run to surge in front, 22-21.

Eastern also led late in the second set, taking a 23-21 lead before Plymouth scored the final four points. Plymouth never led in the second set until 24-23. The Warriors led by as many as six, 18-12.

Plymouth closed out the win by scoring the final two points to snap a 25-all tie.The Warriors led, 12-8, and needed only one point to take the set with a 24-23 lead.

Junior setter Samantha Slonski (Griswold) led Eastern with 11 kills, and a .217 attack percentage, and added ten digs and 17 assists, sophomore middle Katie Wilson (Pittsburg, CA) adding eight kills and three blocks,  freshman outside Erynn Miller (Stratford) seven kills and 14 digs, and junior outside Gianna Trombino (East Moriches, NY) five.  Junior libero Taylor Abelli (Cheshire) led the Warriors with 21 digs, junior outside/setter Britt Carrier (Southington) adding 14 assists and 13 digs.

Casey Stoodley and Elissa Morin combined for 23 kills for Plymouth,  Stoodley leading players on both teams with 12. Danielle Stoodley totaled 21 digs and Casey Stoodley 15. Sarah Cody collected 37 assists and Morin and Kaitlyn Tedeschi combined for seven blocks.

Tuesday, Eastern visits UMass Dartmouth in a Little East Conference match at 7 p.m. and Plymouth hosts UMass Boston at 6 p.m. in a re-match of last year's LEC title game.

Plymouth State U. 3, Eastern Conn. 0

Plymouth State (16-11, 4-1 little east)    30    25   27
Eastern Conn. (12-13, 0-5 little east)      28    23   25


Men's Soccer: Cards Costly for Corsairs

In re-match of 2009 LEC title game, Warriors emerge with key 2-1 winvear72umd_5089.jpg


Above: Freshman Tom Vear (22)splits two UMass Dartmouth defenders Saturday in the Warriors' 2-1 Little East Conference victory at the Mansfield Outdoor Complex (Stephen Goomrigian photo)

SoccerAnnivLogo.jpgMANSFIELD, Conn. - The Eastern Connecticut State University men's soccer team  gained a share of first place in the  Little East Conference with its fifth straight win over UMass Dartmouth, 2-1, in a re-match of the 2009 Little East Conference championship match Saturday afternoon at the Mansfield Outdoor Complex.

Conference leader Keene State, Eastern and Rhode Island College all have 13 points, but Keene has played one less match. The Owls, who shared the top spot with Eastern in the 2009 regular-season conference standings, visit winless Western Connecticut State University Sunday at 1 p.m

Sophomore midfielder Jon DeCasanova (Glastonbury) had a goal in the tenth minutes and assisted on one by freshman back Mike Radlbeck (Westbrook) six minutes into the second half to lift the Warriors into a 2-0 lead before UMass cut the gap in half 17 minutes into the second half on a goal by Victor Ferreira. Radlbeck had cleared a shot by Kyle Estrella off the line eight minutes before Ferreira got UMass on the board.

The teams were meeting for the first time since the Warriors won their second LEC tournament title in three years with a 1-0 triumph here last November.

Junior forward Matt Furman (Montville) improved upon his conference scoring lead by assisting on both goals to give him five assists and 23 points this year. Remarkably, Furman tops the LEC in points and is second in assists and goals despite appearing in only ten matches this year due to an early-season injury which cost him six matches. Furman, who has six goals and three assists in five matches since his return, found DeCasanova unmarked in front of the net with a pass from near the end line for Eastern's first goal, and deflected DeCasanova's free kick to Radlbeck crashing from the right side to make it 2-0 early in the second half.

The Corsairs' bid for the tying goal was hampered when starting back Andrew Eggleston was sent off by referee Michael Connor for his second yellow card midway through the second half, and Ferreira, a starting midfielder, saw his afternoon come to a close after being given his second warning with six minutes left in play. UMass  received eight yellow cards in the match.

Eastern had a handful of chances to extend its early 1-0 lead but was unable to penetrate further against UMass keeper Mike Phelan, who made three brilliant one-on-one saves in the first half by robbing junior midfielder Matt Esposito (East Haven), Furman and freshman forward Romaro Johnson (Bridgeport) 12 minutes apart late in the first half.

Eastern junior keeper Carl Appel (West Windsor, NJ) needed three  outstanding saves - two on shots by Ferreira -- to prevent UMass from tying the match. Three minutes into the second half, he made a late jump to tip a quick shot by Estrella over the crossbar, dove to his right to deny Ferreira ten minutes later, then stretched out to his left three minutes later when Ferreira found room after being sprung on a through-ball by Mike Alves.

Eastern starting defender Aaron Smiles (Bedford, MA) left the match midway through the first  and did not return after injuring his left wrist after being tossed to the ground while chasing down a ball near the end line.  With Smiles and several teammates on the sidelines because of the physical play, the Warriors received quality minutes in off-the-bench roles from Johnson, junior midfielder Sean Collins (Bristol), sophomore back Ryan McCormack (Shelton), and freshman midfielder Luke Capezzone (Colchester).
UMass Dartmouth, which reached last year's LEC title match as the No. 4 seed after upsetting Keene in the semifinals, is in fifth place in the conference with one regular-season match remaining, two points behind the University of Southern Maine. The top four finishers qualify for the LEC playoffs.

Eastern hosts Plymouth State University Saturday and UMass Dartmouth hosts Western Connecticut on the final day of the regular season.


Field Hockey: Valiant Bid Falls Short

Warriors  own second half vs. Westfield but can't recover from early goal

chapmanwsu72dpi_5162.jpgWARRIORlogo2009_72dpi.jpgMANSFIELD, Conn. -  Liz Hall's  re-directed shot of a blast by Jessie Gould with 14 minutes left in the first half stood up to provide the Westfield State  University field hockey team with a 1-0 Little East Conference victory over Eastern Connecticut State University Saturday afternoon at the Mansfield Outdoor Complex.

Above: Ali Chapman looks for room against Westfield's Jessi Gould in the second half of Saturday's 1-0 loss.

Both teams entered play on the edge of LEC tournament extinction. Eastern (3-13, 1-9 little east) was eliminated from consideration for the sixth straight year while Westfield (6-10, 3-7 little east) clung to its post-season life after defeating Eastern for the sixth straight year.

The top eight teams in the 12-team conference qualify for the LEC tournament. Through Saturday, Westfield was locked in a three-way tie for ninth place with Worcester State University and Framingham State University. There was also a two-way tie for third and a three-way tie for sixth.

Westfield broke the scoreless deadlock in the 22nd minute when Hall got a stick on a blast from the top of the circle by Gould and re-directed it past Eastern goalie Danielle Reichardt (Ocean Township, NJ). The goal was the third of the season by Hall and and the team-leading sixth assist by Gould, ranked third in the LEC with 40 points.

After being limited to just one shot in the first half (that coming from Ali Chapman (Watertown) with nine minutes left), Eastern spent a large part of the second half in its offensive third of the field, but couldn't get one past Westfield goalie Amanda McCarthy as it was shut out for the seventh time this year. Eastern's best chance came with four minutes left in the first half when Rachel Cocola (South Windsor) momentarily had possession of the ball behind McCarthy after receiving a pass from Elise Zarcaro (Enfield), but couldn't keep control as the ball went over the end line.

Leading 1-0, Westfield had a flurry of chances late in the half, but Reichardt stopped a close shot from Gould, and Ali Feldman's rebound shot was deflected wide of the cage.

Eastern senior forwards Dana McLaughlin (West Hartford) and Melanie Proud (Wall Township, NJ) carried play most of the second half for the Warriors, Proud taking all three of the team's second-half shots (two were saved by McCarthy). Proud's best bid to tie the game came with 14 minutes left, but McCarthy dove to her right to knock down the shot that Proud took after beating Westfield back Courtney Araujo to the ball and controlling a  pass from  Liz Bolduc (Stonington) in the circle. From the wing, Proud also fed two passes across the goal mouth in the second half that rolled untouched out of the circle.

Eastern visits Anna Maria College Monday at 6 p.m.


Sweet 16th for Streaking Warriors

With tie against UMass, women's soccer extends unbeaten streak to 16

goalcelebration_72dpi 362.jpg

At left: The Warriors mob Taylor Buchanan (5) after her 12th goal of the season with seven minutes left in regulation forced overtime. (Liz Cutler photo)..

SoccerAnnivLogo.jpgNORTH DARTMOUTH, Mass.-- The Eastern Connecticut State University women's soccer team had one long streak ended Saturday against the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth, but managed to extend a more important one in a 1-1 double-overtime Little East Conference draw that netted the Warriors their 16th game this season without a loss.

With Eastern (13-0-3, 5-0-1 little east) trailing by a goal with just under seven minutes left in regulation, sophomore midfielder Taylor Buchanan (Ellington) saved this year's streak when she forced overtime by connecting on a 25-yard free kick .

In sudden-death overtime, the Warriors had an opportunity to extend its winning streak against UMass Dartmouth (3-12-1, 0-5-1 little east) when they were awarded a penalty kick because of a foul in the box, but junior midfielder Jo-Ann Merheb's (Bethel) drive was thwarted by UMass keeper Tayna Braga.

 In the tie, Eastern failed to defeat UMass Dartmouth for the 15th consecutive time.

With one regular-season conference match remaining  Eastern remains atop the LEC standings with 16 points, one better than Western Connecticut State University, which shaved two points off the Warriors' lead by besting 2009 LEC regular-season champion Keene State College, 1-0 in double overtime Saturday. Eastern can clinch its second outright LEC regular-season crown in six years Saturday with a tie or win against homestanding Plymouth State University.

Ranked No. 1 in New England and No. 11 nationally, Eastern  needs a win or tie Wednesday against visiting Manhattanville College and Saturday against Plymouth to clinch its first undefeated regular season in the program's 25-year history.

UMass, which garnered its first conference point after losses in its first five matches, took a 1-0 lead six minutes into the second half  when freshman Erica Jonasson cleaned up a free kick by senior teammate Katelyn Tsonis that was initially saved by Eastern junior keeper Theresa Pagnozzi (Waterford).

With time running out in regulation  Buchanan  saved the day by converting her long free kick for her team-leading 12th goal of the season in the last 12 matches.  The tie is the second in as many matches for Eastern, which had a program-record 11-game winning streak ended Wednesday in a 0-0 deadlock at Trinity College.

The Warriors outshot the Corsairs, 21-6, but Braga made 12 stops one year after allowing one goal without a save in the first half of Eastern's 4-0 victory.Pagnozzi made three saves in remaining unbeaten (10-0-2) this year and in her career (11-0-2).

The game signalled the return of junior back Laura Violette (Wallingford), who came off the bench to see her first action after a leg injury had sidelined her for three weeks.


By Zach Malouf
Sports Information Intern

With 28 swimmers, Warriors leap into 15th season Saturday at SJC

arisco 72dpi_7862 copy.jpgWARRIORlogo2009_72dpi.jpgThe 15th season of women's intercollegiate swimming at Eastern Connecticut State University is right around the corner, and the 2010/11 season marks an important one in the history of the program.

Above: Amy Arisco

The Warriors look to continue to dominate their competition,  using their strength and depth, look to continue moving forward in hopes of replicating their record-breaking season last year, where breaking records was the teams recurring theme.

"We broke 19 records last year and finished third in our New England (Division II-III) championship weekend; last year was one of the best seasons the program has ever seen," says Ericka Piccochi (Waterbury), a senior co-captain and returning freestyler.

The task of repeating or improving upon last year's performance will be a formidable one, as the Warriors must re-build following the losses of six seniors and three additional swimmers who chose not to return.

Swimming by Piccochi's side and representing the second half of the returning  senior class is  fellow three-year letterwinner and co-captain Amy Arisco (Wallingford),  Arisco holds all three program records in the individual medley, the 50 yard butterfly mark, and has contributed to four of the five program relay records. A 14-time All-New England performer, Arisco has been named the team's MVP in each of her two healthy seasons (she missed most of her freshman season with mono).

Eastern graduated its deepest and most talented senior class last year - among them 13-time All-New England performer and breaststroke specialist Jessica Wilson and All-New England freestylers  Sarah Dombrowski and Kelsy Doheny. Other key losses among underclassmen  are All-New England backstroker Katie Curran, All-New England distance freestyler Maria Altieri, and promising breaststroker Stephanie O'Kelly (Westport), the latter forced to sit out this season due to injury.

With the losses of its top five breaststrokers, Eastern will need to focus upon filling those holes.


Head coach Maureen Fahey, who has provided stability as the only head coach in program history, feels strongly that this will not be a rebuilding year for the team, but rather, another opportunity to impress the world of New England Division III swimming with its returners and newcomers this season.

Above: Ericka Piccochi

Fahey, named NEISDA Division II-III Coach-of-the-Year last year for leading the Warriors to a program-best third place,  points out that "even though we have lost some key athletes which strengthened specific events for us in the past, we will now be stronger in other areas of our program where some gaps have opened up."

The foundation for the program this year is in its returning junior class, all of whom are two-year letterwinners: Samantha Armitage (Bristol), Stephanie Carroll (Hamden), Andzelina Chmielewski (Enfield), Jennifer Dufraine (Somers), Tara McCane (Torrington), and Nadine Menard (Woodstock).

Menard, who received last year's "team" award, swam to All-New England honors last year in two buttefly events and as a member of two freestyle relays and joins Arisco as a top returnee in the individual medley events. Chmielewski and sophomore Darcy Jensen (Orange)will  help ease the transition due to the losses of last year's top two backstrokers; Dufraine, co-recipient of last year's Most Improved Swimmer Award, will team with Arisco and Menard to provide strength in the butterfly events;

Rounding out the list of 12 returning letterwinners are sophomores Amanda Fromerth (Manchester), Corri McDonald  (North Haven) and Julie Pietrycha (Newington)

A number of newcomers should make an immediate implact. Says Piccochi, "it is with the strength and versatility of the many recruits this year that leave us as a team feeling confident and ready to take on any team in any event this season."

Nine "true" freshmen are among the 16 newcomers that comprise the largest roster (28) in program history. Fahey hopes to reap immediate dividends from a deep and talented freshman class, among them Marissa Colley (East Haven), Becky Odgers (Shelton), Amanda Rivers (Meriden), Michelle Schapp (Torrington) and Jacqueline Tromp (Bohemia, NY).  Colley, Rivers and Schapp are freestylers, Odgers and Tromp promising backstrokers.

In addition to its third-place finish at the NEISDA Championships last year, Eastern repeated its second-place finish from the previous season at the Little East Conference Championships. During the regular season, the Warriors captured seven of ten dual meets, presenting Fahey with her 100th career coaching victory in the process.

Joining Fahey on the coaching staff this season are veteran assistants Amy Golas '03 and Bill Hassell. Golas, New England's  top senior at the 2003 NEISDA Championships, is back for a seventh season. The former Windham High School head coach, Hassell is in his sixth year with the Eastern program.

Eastern looks to maintain its decade-long domination when it opens the season at the Saint Joseph College (CT) Blue Jay Pentathlon. The Warriors open a schedule of five home dual meets against Division II Assumption College October 30.



W-Soccer: Norell's Long Road Back

Fourth-year senior returns to the field for first time following hip surgery

norell72dpi_4808.jpgBy Dana McLaughlin

Sports Information Intern

Head Coach Chris D'Ambrosio (below) discusses Stephanie Norell's return to the lineup AUDIO.wav (6:00)

dambrosio72dpi_0797.jpgWILLIMANTIC,Conn. -- Women's soccer senior back Stephanie Norell of Stratford recorded her first 41 minutes of the season this past Saturday in the Little East Conference victory over Rhode Island College that extended the team's unbeaten streak to 14 (13-0-1).

Above: Stephanie Norell in her 2010 debut Saturday. (Stephen Goomrigian photo)

 Norell sustained a hip injury last season due to overuse and underwent surgery this past June at St. Francis Hospital in Hartford under noted surgeon Dr. Michael Joyce. The surgery was to correct a labral tear (a tear in the cartilage surrounding the hip joint), and also included shaving down of the femur.

The planned recovery time was approximately three months for healing, and another three months to recuperate. For Norell,  this meant there would be no chance of seeing the field this fall. When asked how she felt about the recovery time period preventing her from participating in her senior season, Norell reported that it was mostly a motivation factor to recover faster than planned. "What have I got to lose?" she asked herself, "It's now or never, was what I was thinking."

Norell began a physical therapy regiment of twice per week starting the day after her surgery. The sessions began with simple range of motion and stretching exercises, and over time graduated to walking, and eventually lunges and squatting.

Norell stated that she swam, used the arm bike, and completed a lot of upper body lifting workouts to keep in shape during the recovery process. In the first week of September she was cleared by her doctor to begin running. After a few weeks, she reported that she was feeling great, and he gave her permission to start practicing with the team, but no physical contact was allowed.

On October 12, Norell was completely cleared by her doctor to compete, a full two months ahead of her recovery plan. The final hurdle to seeing game action was overcome  when she passed the timed mile of six minutes and thirty seconds, of which every player on this year's team was required to reach before pulling on a game jersey.

Four minutes into the second half of the14th match of the season this past Saturday at the Mansfield Outdoor Complex, Norell's No. 3 was called by head coach Chris D'Ambrosio for the first time since last year's NCAA Division III tournament game. With New England's No.-ranked team on the way to its 11th straight win, Norell spelled starting back Rachel Cutler to the delight of  her friends and family, as well as the Alumni Day crowd. She spent the remainder of the match on the field.

Norell is one of four seniors on this year's team, along with fellow backs Lauren Hickey and Amber Petrizzo and midfielder Megan Pavia. The 5-foot-5 inch Bunnell graduate had been a starting defender throughout her career prior to her injury, having played in 55 of 57 matches throughout her first three seasons. She had started every match the past two years, including all 21 a year ago on the Little East tournament championship squad.

Norell reported that this has been an emotional season for her, and she couldn't have done it without the support of her teammates and coach.


M-Soccer: Warriors HItting Their Stride

 "Road Warriors" improve to 7-1-1 away from home with 3-0 shutout


johnson jersey 72_2019.jpgNEW LONDON, Conn.--Junior forward Matt Furman (Montville) WARRIORlogo2009_72dpi.jpgscored his fifth and six goals in four matches since returning from injury and also had an assist to lift the Eastern Connecticut State University men's soccer team to a 3-0 non-conference verdict over the U.S. Coast Guard Academy Wednesday night.

Above: Romaro Johnson

Eastern (10-3-2) won its tenth game in a season for the fourth straight year under fourth-year head coach Greg DeVito and improved to 7-1-1 away from home this season with its third regular-season victory over Coast Guard (5-8-1) in the last three years.

Eastern led 3-0 at halftime and allowed only three shots in the second junior Carl Appel (West Windsor, NJ) and senior Rick Emery (Brewster, NY) combined on the team's sixth shutout of the season.

Freshman forward Tom Vear  (Monson, MA) blasted a shot off the right post and in just 6:29 into the match as Eastern  took a 1-0 lead, Furman and sophomore forward Cory Tobler (Portland) assisting on the goal. Furman scored his first goal in the 20th minute as Coast Guard senior goalkeeper Chris Tarbell came too far out of the box and Furman found the back of the net for a 2-0 advantage, with sophomore back Jordan Munsell (Waterford) assisting.
Furman added his second goal of the game and team-leading ninth in nine matches with a shot just under the crossbar in the 33rd minute to close the scoring. Sophomore back Bradley Fletcher (Middletown) and freshman Romaro Johnson (Bridgeport) assisted for the Warriors, the point the first in the career of Johnson.

Since missing three weeks with a nose injury, Furman has returned to score six goals, one in his return Oct. 9 against the University of Southern Maine and three the next day against Kean University.

Since a 2-0 loss to Montclair State University, Eastern has won three and tied one in its last four. Coast Guard, which defeated Eastern to capture the 2008 ECAC Division III New England championship, has lost five straight, all by shutout.

In four years under DeVito, Eastern has won 52, lost 19 and tied nine and claimed two Little East Conference tournament titles. The team's 16 victoriees last year tied the  40-year-old program season record for wins.

Eastern returns to conference play Saturday, hosting Massachusetts Dartmouth at 1 p.m.



Women's Volleyball: Warriors Sweep

They have won four of their last six following 25-6, 25-20, 25-16 victory


WARRIORlogo2009_72dpi.jpgNEW LONDON, Conn. --  Sophomore middle Katie Wilson (Pittsburg, CA) had a game-high 11 kills without an error as the Eastern Connecticut State University women's volleyball team won for the fourth time in the last six matches with a  25-6, 25-20, 25-16 non-conference victory over Mitchell College Wednesday night at the Yarnall Center.

Above: Katie Wilson

In the second meeting between the programs in as many years, Eastern (12-12) produced its second-highest attack percentage (.352) of the season to snap a two-match losing streak. Half of Eastern's wins this year have come via the sweep.

The 6-foot-2 inch Wilson, a first-year transfer from Southern Connecticut,had at least ten kills for the fourth time in the last five matches, attacking at a season-high .647 -- her third match at .500 or better in the last five.

Junior setter Samantha Slonski (Griswold) followed Wilson with seven kills, freshman outside Erynn Miller (Stratford) adding five kills without an error and senior outside Rachael Joy (Huntington Station, NY) had four kills and attacked at .250. Wilson, junior outside Gianna Trombino (East Moriches, NY) and junior right side Kristianna Ibsen (Shelton) each had two of Eastern's nine serivice aces. Slonski also led Eastern with 14 digs, junior libero Taylor Abelli (Cheshire) adding 12 and Wilson seven digs and two blocks. Slonski matched her dig total with 14 assists, junior Britt Carrier (Southington) totalling 13.

Eastern hosts Plymouth State University Saturday at 4 p.m. in a Little East Conference match.

Eastern Conn. 3, Mitchell College 0

Eastern Conn. (12-12)     25   25   25
Mitchell (4-14)                 6    20   16

Women's Soccer: 15 Down, 3 To Go

Warriors clear second major hurdle in week in quest for unbeaten season

pagnozzi 2SLIDE.jpg

WARRIORlogo2009_72dpi.jpgHARTFORD, Conn. - The Eastern Connecticut State University women's soccer team moved to within three matches of its first undefeated regular season in the program's 25-year history following a scoreless double-overtime draw with Trinity College Wednesday afternoon.

At right: Theresa Pagnozzi

In a battle which featured the last two unbeaten teams in the New England rankings, Eastern (13-0-2) posted its seventh shutout of the season and Trinity (5-2-4) its eighth. Eastern junior keeper Theresa Pagnozzi (Waterford) made eight saves for her fourth full shutout in ten starts and senior Emily Weedon and junior Lily Pepper combined for five saves for the hosts, who became the first team this year to hold the Warriors scoreless. Pagnozzi extended her record for consecutive unbeaten games in a season by a keeper to 11 (10-0-1) and is now 11-0-1 in 12 decisions lifetime.

Eastern has been ranked No. 1 in New England the last two weeks and rose two spots to No. 11 in this week's NSCAA Division III national rankings, released yesterday. Trinity was ranked tenth in New England October 12 with a 4-0-3 record before losing two of its next three.

Neither team threatened in the first half, totaling seven shots between them, but Trinity junior forward Katie Giberson nearly scored in the opening minutes of the second stanza, sending a hard ball from the top right corner of the box that the 5-foot- 9 inch Pagnozzi  needed to dive up and to her left to stop.  Freshman forward Nicole Leonard (Rutherford, NJ) one-timed a shot from 15 yards out in front of the goal that was just wide left 15 minutes into the second half, and first-year sophomore forward Chelsea Downer (Colchester) smacked a shot from the right wing on a breakaway that sailed just over the upper-right corner of the Bantam goal in the 67th minute. 

 Pepper spoiled the closest chance in overtime by either team, getting her hand on a loose ball in traffic front of her net before any of several Warriors in the area could make a play on it. 

The tie ended Eastern's program-record 11-game winning streak. The Warriors had won 11 in a row after tying Montclair State, 1-1 in double overtime in the opening round of the Manhattanville College Valiant Classic Sept. 11 in the third match of the season.

Trinity was the second team in a week to represent a serious challenge to Eastern's bid for an undefeated season. Last Wednesday, the Warriors edged Amherst College, ranked 25thnationally at the time, by a 2-1 score. Eastern was attempting to defeat Trinity for the second season in a row for the first time in the 16-game series between the teams. Wednesday's tie was the third in five years between the clubs.

The Warriors have allowed only nine goals in 15 matches this year, Trinity five in 11 outings.

Eastern has three matches left in the regular season: a Little East Conference match at UMass Dartmouth Saturday, a home non-conference match with Manhattanville College next Wednesday and a conference road contest at Plymouth State University Oct. 30.


Field Hockey: Warriors Overpowered

Second-half flurry turns Little East Conference match into 7-0 rout


WARRIORlogo2009_72dpi.jpgMANSFIELD, Conn. --  Sophomore forward Eleanor Taylor had two goals and an assist as the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth field hockey team clinched at least a share of the Little East Conference regular-season title for the second straight year with a 7-0 rout of Eastern Connecticut State University Wednesday afternoon at the Mansfield Outdoor Complex.

Above Tia Mucciarone

With its ninth conference victory without a loss, UMass (11-5, 9-0 little east) guarantees itself at least a share of the title. The Corsairs' victory, coupled with Bridgewater State University's 3-2 overtime loss at Framingham State, gives UMass a two-game lead in the standings with two regular-season matches remaining.

Holding a modest 2-0 lead at the break, UMass scored four goals in a span of 11 minutes and went on to its fifth straight win in this series over Eastern with its highest goal total in a match this year.

Taylor, who entered the match sharing the LEC scoring lead with 39 points, scored on a re-direct with three minutes left in the half to make it 2-0, assisted on the second goal of the second half with a hit-in on a penalty corner in the 43rd minute, and added her second goal of the match - 20th of the season -- three minute later on a penalty stroke awarded when Eastern senior goalkeeper Tia Mucciarone (Franklin, MA) was whistled for covering up the ball.

Senior forward Stephanie Kinchla contributed her 12th and 13th goals of the season, both coming after hit-ins off corners by Taylor, last year's LEC Rookie-of-the-Year. Freshman goalkeeper Lauren O'Brien recorded her second shutout in five starts this year, turning back only two shots.

The win is the seventh in the last eight outings for UMass, which won its first LEC tournament title a year ago after sharing the regular-season title and was the pre-season No. 1-ranked team this year. The Corsairs' only loss in the last eight was a 4-1 verdict at Trinity, ranked No. 20 in Division III.

Mucciarone made eight saves for Eastern (3-12, 1-8 little east) before departing on the short end of a 6-0 score with 20 minutes left.

Eastern hosts Westfield State University Saturday at 4 p.m.



W-Volleyball: Warriors Battle in Loss

Eastern gives Amherst late run in two sets in three-set setback


AMHERST, Mass. -- Returning to action after a week layoff, the Eastern Connecticut State University women's volleyball team battled Amherst College before falling in straight sets Tuesday night at LeFrak Gymnasium. Amherst won, 25-13, 25-20, 25-20.

At left: Kristianna Ibsen (foreground), Taylor Abelli and Britt Carrier combined for 26 digs and handled 42 reception attempts wtih five errors Tuesday night.

The second-ranked New England team in the AVCA Division III national poll, Amherst (18-1)won its 15th straight match, with only an early-season loss separting it from a perfect season. Amherst has beaten Eastern (11-12)  the last nine times the teams have met after the Warriors won the first three matches in this series.

Eastern, which has lost two straight after a three-match winning streak, was tied with Amherst as late as 17-17 in the second set and 16-16 in the third set. Trailing 22-20 in the second set, Eastern commited two attack errors and Amherst converted an attack attempt. A kill by sophomore middle Katie Wilson (Pittsburg, CA) pulled Eastern to within 19-18 in the third set before Amherst scored four straight to take command.

There were ten ties in the second set before the hosts broke that final 17-all deadlock with two points in a row on a kill and an Eastern attack error. Down 12-9, Eastern pulled even on Amherst service error, a kill by freshman outside Erynn Miller (Stratford) and a re-directed kill by junior setter Samantha Slonski (Griswold).

Eastern scrapped back from an early three-point deficit in the third set, scoring six of the next seven points to take a two-point advantage. Junior outside Kristianna Ibsen (Shelton) had a kill and ace in that run and sophomore outside Danielle Bourne (Branford) an ace. The Warriors held a slim edge through the middle of the match, pushing the lead to four, 15-11, on the strength of kills by Slonski, Miller and Ibsen. Amherst finally pulled even and took the lead for good, 17-16 on a kill.

Amherst, which featured five players standing six-feet or better, and five starters from the West Coast, concluded its regular season unbeaten at home (9-0). Six-foot-one inch junior Cristy Meier led her team with 12 kills and sophomore Katherine Kanoff added ten. Sophomore setter Callie Neilson totalled 37 assists and senior libero Rachel Yorke dug up 25 balls..

Miller led Eastern with nine kills to go along with 12 digs. Ibsen had eight kills, a .333 attack percentage, and two blocks and junior libero Taylor Abelli (Cheshire) 13 digs, Slonski chipped in six kills, a .417 attack percentange, and led the way with 17 assists. Junior Britt Carrier (Southington) came off the bench to add eight digs.

Eastern visits Mitchell College Wednesday at 7 p.m

.Amherst College 3, Eastern Conn. 0


Eastern Conn. (11-12)     13    20    20

Amherst (18-1)                25   25    25


Three Are Little East Weekly Winners

 Hackett top rookie for fourth time; Marchitto, T. Merheb first-time picks

hackett72_4552.jpgNORTH DARTMOUTH, Mass. - Eastern Connecticut State University first-year junior Conor Hackett (Bolton) has been selected Little East Conference men's cross country Rookie-of-the-Week for the fourth time this year and sophomore forward Daniela Marchitto (Orange) and freshman midfielder Tamar Merheb (Bethel) have been honored for the first time in the sport of women's soccer in the weekly conference awards program for the week ending Sept. 17.

At left: Conor Hackett (Stephen Goomrigian photo)

Hackett was selected as the LEC's top male rookie for the fourth time in six weeks (the team did not compete in one of those weeks) while Marchitto was tabbed Offensive Player-of-the-Week after scoring four goals in a 2-0-0 week. As the LEC's Rookie-of-the-Week, Merheb started her 11th and 12th matches this year, playing156 of a possible 180 minutes and contributing an assist in Saturday's 6-1 Little East victory over visiting Rhode Island College.

As Eastern's No. 2 finisher in Saturday's 30-25 home loss to Rhode Island College, Hackett was fourth overall in a field of 22 in a time of 23:12 over the four mile Mansfield Hollow State Park layout. Prior to Saturday, Hackett had led all Eastern runners in three consecutive races after running second in his career debut Sept. 10 at Fitchburg State University's Jim Sheehan Memorial.

marchittoPicture ssu72dpi836.jpgHackett has been Eastern's only weekly men's cross country selection this year, while junior Amanda Quinones (Trumbull) was named the women's cross country Runner-of-the-Week Sept. 13.

At left: Daniela Marchitto (8) (Liz Cutler photo)

Marchitto scored the first goal in last Wednesday's 2-1 road victory over regionally-ranked Amherst College, then recorded her first career hat track (fourth multiple-goal match of her 34-game career) against Rhode Island College. Last year's LEC Rookie-of-the-Year and the only freshman first-team all-conference pick, Marchitto is second on the team this year with nine goals and 21 points. Rated seventh in the LEC in points and tied for seventh in goals, Marchitto is Eastern's active career leader in goals (17) and shares the active career lead in points (38) with sophomore Taylor Buchanan (Ellington).

merhebT_72Picture 504.jpgA starting midfielder along with junior sister Jo-Ann, Tamar Merheb picked up her second assist of the season Saturday against Rhode Island College. After Jo-Ann scored the first two goals of the match, Tamar and sophomore assist leader Kelly Wallace (South Windsor) assisted on Marchitto's first goal to provide the Warriors with a 3-0 halftime lead. Tamar Merheb's previous career point also came on an assist of a Marchitto goal in a 4-0 road win over Fitchburg State University Sept. 15.

At left: Tamar Merheb (9) (Liz Cutler photo)

Eastern has now had eight different women's soccer players honored once each with weekly LEC awards. Previous Eastern weekly award-winners this year include Wallace and Buchanan as Offensive Players-of-the-Week, junior back Laura Violette (Wallingford), senior backs Amber Petrizzo (Plainville) and Lauren Hickey (Southwick, MA) as Defensive Players-of-the-Week and freshman forward Nicole Leonard (Rutherford, NJ) Rookie-of-the-Week.

Ranked No. 1 in New England and No. 13 nationally, Eastern (13-0-1) visits Trinity College Wednesday at 4 p.m. in its final non-conference road match of the regular season.





Hall of Fame: Tix Deadline Wednesday

Six former athletes to gain induction at 17th ceremony this Sunday

HallofFame_72dpilogo.jpgWILLIMANTIC, Conn. -  The deadline to reserve tickets to the 17th Easten Connecticut State University E-Club Hall of Fame Luncheon and Induction Ceremony scheduled for Sunday, Oct. 24 at the campus Student Center is this Wednesday, Oct. 20 at 4 p.m.

Tickets are priced at $45 each and can be reserved by calling committee co-chairmen Dr. David G. Yeo at 860-465-5166 or Scott Smith at 860-465-4326. A reception is scheduled for noon, followed by the speaking and video program, which gets underway at 12:50.

Comprising the Class of 2010 are Jason W. Brasher (soccer) of Rowayton, Brian J. Cassidy (baseball) of Southington, Bernice J. Laferriere (basketball) of Bristol, Denise E. Lamontagne (softball) of Waterbury, Thomas E. Reynolds (baseball) of Thomaston, and Leanne E. Shoop (softball) of Colchester.

Also being honored will be the members of the charter induction Class of 1986, who were feted 25 years ago: the late Francis E. Geissler, John C. Caneira, George Dargati, Thomas Nevers, and Kathleen M. Regan

Dr. Bonnie J. Edmondson '87 will serve as Master of Ceremonies.


W-XC: With Frosh, Warriors Challenge

 Freshmen help Warriors close gap, but Anchorwomen hang on for win


MANSFIELD, Conn. - Eastern Connecticut State University women's cross country  freshmen Katie France (Portland) and Alexa Palasky (Griswold) helped the Warriors close the scoring gap from last year's ten-point loss to Rhode Island College, but the Anchorwomen had enough to trim the Warriors by a single point, 27-28, Saturday afternoon at Mansfield Hollow State Park.

At right: Seniors Chelsie Lawson (left) and Melissa Healy. (Stephen Goomrigian photo)

Last year, Rhode Island captured four of the top six place in a ten-point victory over the Warriors This time, junior Amanda Quinones (Trumbull) repeated her second-place finish from a year ago in this race, and France filled in in third place and Palasky sixth, but the race was decided when RIC senior Kaitlin Geagan bested Eastern senior Chelsie Lawson (Sandwich, MA) by 11 seconds for to earn the decisive ninth-place finish.

Quinones (20:46) followed RIC senior Katie Desrosiers at the finish by 19 seconds, with France coming in at 21:13 and Palasky at 21:54. Sophomore Cora Gingras (East Hampton) followed Palasky in seventh place in a time of 22:06, and Lawson was timed in 23:05.

Last year, Quinones was second in the race to RIC's Brittany Richer, who fell to fifth place this season.

Eastern competes in the Little East Conference/New England Alliance Championship Oct. 30 at Moore State Park in Paxton, MA.

Rhode Island College 27, Eastern Conn. 28

1. Katie Desrosiers  ® 20:27; 2. Amanda Quinones (E) 20:46; 3. Katie France (E) 21:13; 4. Chelsea Marshall ® 21:24;  5. Brittany Richer ® 2137; 6. Alexa Palasky (E) 21:54; 7. Cora Gingras (E) 22:06; 8. Brooke Iby ® 22:45; 9. Kaitlin Geagan ® 22:54; 10. Chelsie Lawson (E) 23:05; 11. Jamie Nunes ® 23:09; 12. Nicole Poirier ® 23:33; 13. Haley Smith (E) 23:39; 14. Denica Gagnon (E) 23:47; 15. Amanda Ericson (E) 23:50; 16. Melissa Healy (E) 23:55; 17. Justyna Barlow ® 24:24; 18. Kayleigh Smith ® 24:28; 19. Wendy Bouton (E) 24:29; 20. Brittany Miskell (E) 25:33; 21. Meghan McMullen ® 25:48.


Men's XC: RIC's Top Two Too Much

For second straight year, Anchormen edge Warriors by 25-30 at Mansfield


MANSFIELD, Conn. - The Eastern Connecticut State University men's cross country team placed its fifth scoring runner ahead of Rhode Island College's fifth, but the Warriors couldn't overcame the fact that Anchorman runners finished 1-2 Saturday afternoon at Mansfield Hollow State Park.

At right: Eastern runners Conor Hackett (second from left), Nick Miller (third from left) and Brody Secore (far right) were Eastern's top three finishers Saturday. (Stephen Goomrigian photo).

In the only home meet of the season, Eastern was edged by Rhode Island by a 25-30 score for the second straight season. Last year, Eastern All-New England Alliance senior Dave Hunt stood between the RIC duo of Mike Macedo and Conor McCloskey.  Without Hunt in their way, Macedo, a senior, won this year's individual title in a time of 22:16 and McCloskey followed 14 seconds later to give the Anchormen a 1-2 finish that ultimately, cost Eastern the race.

Led by sophomore Nick Miller (Norwich) and first-year junior Conor Hackett (Bolton), Eastern runners took four of the next six places, but couldn't overcome RIC's early advantage. Miller led the Warriors for the first time since the season-opener in a time of 22:57, with Hackett following 15 seconds later. Freshman Brody Secore (South Windsor) was sixth overall (23:24) and senior Ken Landry (East Hampton) eighth (23:45), with sophomore Tim Callahan (Portland) rounding Eastern's five scorers with an overall ninth-place finish (24:18).

Eastern competes in the Little East Conference/New England Alliance Championship Oct. 30 at Moore State Park in Paxton, MA.

Rhode Island College 25, Eastern Conn. 30

1. Mike Macedo ® 22:16; 2. Conor McCloskey ® 22:30; 3. Nick Miller (E) 22:57; 4. Conor Hackett (E) 23:12; 5. Shawn Stadnick ® 23:21; 6. Brody Secore (E) 23:24; 7. Cameron Richer ® 23:39; 8. Ken Landry (E) 23:45; 9. Tim Callahan (E) 24:18; 10. Austin Pena ® 24:33; 11. Conor Breagy ® 24:37; 12. Bryan Jorge (E) 24:41; 13. Ryan Franklin (E) 24:46; 14. Colin Whiston (E) 24:47; 15. Ryan Hughes (E) 24:48; 16. Brad Beausoleil (E) 25:00; 17. Joey Perucki (E) 25:06; 18. Kevin Carey ® 25:21; 19. Tom DeCristofaro ® 25:27; 20. Stephen White (E) 25:54; 21. Casey McGarvey (E) 25:55; 22. Alejandro Hernandez (E) 26:04.

Field Hockey: Late Viking Goals Fatal

Despite Booth's first goal, Warriors remain in LEC basement after 3-1 loss

booth_head_72_2567.jpgSALEM, Mass.  -- Senior April Rossetti and junior Kaitlyn Aronian each scored second half goals to break a 1-1 tie and lift the Salem State University  field hockey team to a 3-1 Little East Conference victory over Eastern Connecticut State University Saturday.

At left: Paige Booth

With its ninth loss in its last ten matches, Eastern (3-11, 1-7 little east) remained in last place in the 12-game standings, one game behind Framingham State University (2-6). Framingham, upended dropped a 4-2 decision at Westfield State University Friday night, was beaten by Eastern, 2-1, last Saturday at the Mansfield Outdoor Complex.

With Worcester State University losing, 6-1, at Keene State College and the University of Southern Maine falling, 2-1, at conference leader Massachusetts Dartmouth Saturday, Salem  pulled into a three-way tie for sixth place in the standings. The top eight teams in the final LEC standings qualify for the post-season tournament, which gets underway Nov. 2.

Rosselli snapped a tie with eight minutes left in the match, and Aronian followed three minutes later  as Salem defeated Eastern for the fifth time in the last six meetings between the programs.

Salem's Kristin Santanello,  a freshman member of Eastern's program last year, put the Vikings on the board first with her second goal of the year at the 19:03 mark on an assist from Rossetti. The Warriors pulled even when senior forward Paige Booth (Hollis, NH) came off the bench to record her first career point with a goal off a corner three minutes before the end of the first half.

Salem State kept the offensive pressure on in the second half, out-shooting  Eastern, 9-3,  in the period, and 20-5 for the game. Salem goalie  Jessica McKenna kept the Warriors off the scoreboard in the second half until Rossetti scored her unassisted goal with just under eight minutes remaining. 

Senior Tia Mucciarone (Franklin, MA) took the loss in net for Eastern despite making nine saves.

Eastern Connecticut hosts UMass Dartmouth Wednesday at 4 p.m.

Men's Soccer: Warriors Make Point

Saturday, Oct. 16, 2010

In Little East's 1-1 ot stalemate, RIC remains stubborn road opponent


PROVIDENCE, R.I. --  Defending LEC25.jpgLittle East Conference tournament champion Eastern Connecticut State University scored with 18 minutes left in regulation to salvage a 1-1 double overtime conference  tie and gain a point against Rhode Island College Saturday afternoon at the RIC Soccer Field.

In  its quest to overtake conference leader Keene State College, Eastern (9-3-2, 3-1-1 little east), lost a point in the race to the Owls, who routed visiting Massachusetts Boston, 6-1, Saturday. With two regular-season conference games remaining, Keene has 13 points on the basis of a 4-0-1 conference mark. The Warriors share second place with at least Rhode Island College (8-4-1, 3-1-1 little east), both clubs showing ten points. (A UMass Dartmouth win over host Plymouth State University in a late Saturday game would create a three-way tie for second place).

Eastern and Keene shared last year's regular-season title and shared the top spot in this year's LEC pre-season coaches poll. As the No. 1 seed, Keene was upset in the tournament's first (semifinal)  round while Eastern blanked Rhode Island College and UMass Dartmouth en route to its second LEC tournament title in three years.

Saturday, freshman  forward Tom Vear (Monson, MA) scored his second career goal on freshman back Mike Radlbeck's (Westbrook) first career assist with 18 minutes left in regulation to carry the Warriors back from an early 1-0 deficit and extend their modest unbeaten streak against RIC to three games (2-0-1).

While Eastern has dominated the Anchormen at home recently - winning all five encounters since 2005 -- the Warriors have not enjoyed similar success at Providence, where they have lost three and tied one in the last four meetings there.
 The Rhode Island's vantage point, the Anchormen settled for the tie despite a dominant first half which afforded them opportunities for more than one goal. The Anchormen outshot the Warriors, 13-1, over the first 45 minutes and did not allow Eastern a shot on goal for the entire frame.

The only goal of the first half came after a corner kick in the 13th minute. Junior midfielder Hector Espildora Fortuno served the ball in front of the net to an open junior forward Jonathan Goncalves  who pivoted and scored his first goal of the season.
 The best chance for the Anchormen to tack on a second goal came in the 28th minute when Espildora Fortuno once again found an open teammate off a corner kick.  Senior midfielder Jose Ruiz placed a perfect header just inside the right post, but Eastern freshman midfielder Kyle Surprenant (Coventry) swooped in for a defensive save to keep the RIC margin at one goal.
 Although the Anchormen continued to control the match, the momentum began to swing in the 65th minute, when the Warriors took more control of the ball and field position than they had previously. In the 73rd minute, Eastern took advantage of a quick-developing opportunity to tie the match. After a throw-in from near the box, the Anchormen appeared to be clearing the ball toward midfield. But after a couple of inadvertent deflections by players on both teams, Warrior Mike Radlbeck found himself with the ball in space with his eye on a faraway teammate. Radlbeck lofted a long pass in front of the net for Vear, who outran his defender and beat junior goalkeeper Nic Clark for the equalizer.
 While neither team was dominant in the overtime periods, Eastern saw the best opportunity to claim victory in the 107th minute. Off a corner kick, freshman forward Mitch Power (Douglas, MA) sent a shot toward the right post, but RIC freshman midfielder Mike Rasieleski covered the area for a defensive save, which preserved the tie.

In the first overtime, Eastern sophomore forward Cory Tobler (Portland) was taken down in the box without a whistle from referee Syrus Attai.

In a battle of two of the conference's three keepers in regards to save percentage, first-team all-conference junior Carl Appel (West Windsor, NJ) of Eastern made eight saves, while Clark stopped four shots for the Anchormen. 

In pre-game warm-ups, Eastern senior midfielder Sean Capezzone (Colchester) re-injured his repaired knee and did not see action.

In its final two regular-season conference matches, Eastern hosts UMass Dartmouth and Plymouth State University each of the next two Saturdays. Keene, which holds the tie-breaker over Eastern on the strength of its 2-1 triumph at Keene, NH Sept. 25, visits Western Connecticut Saturday and hosts the University of Southern Maine Oct. 30.
Eastern visits the U.S. Coast Guard Academy Wednesday at 7 p.m.  in a non-conference match.

The Rhode Island College Sports Information Office contributed to this game account.    


W-Soccer: Unbeaten Streak Now 14

Marchitto records first hat trick to lead NE's No. 1 team to 11th straight win

marchittoric72dpi_4735.jpgMANSFIELD, Conn. -- Ranked first in New England, the Eastern Connecticut State University women's soccer team remained undefeated and moved to within a win of at least a share of the Little East Conference regular-season championship and the LEC tournament's No. 1 seed with its 11th straight win, a 6-1 verdict over Rhode Island College Saturday at the Mansfield Outdoor Complex.

Above: Daniela Marchitto (8) breaks free from a Rhode Island defender Saturday on the way to a three-goal afternoon. (Stephen Goomrigian photo)

Behind sophomore forward Daniela Marchitto's (Orange) first career hat track (fourth multiple-goal game of her career), Eastern  (13-0-1, 5-0-0 LEC) defeated Rhode Island College (7-6-0, 1-4-0 LEC) for the ninth time in the last ten meetings. The three-goal afternoon gives Marchitto nine this season.

With two regular-season conference games remaining, Eastern can sew up a share of the regular-season title and the No. 1 tournament seed when it visits Massachusetts Dartmouth Saturday at 1 p.m.

With the win, Eastern remains the only unbeaten team ranked in New England. Ranked No. 13 nationally, Eastern scored three goals in each half and has now outscored its 14 opponents this season by a 37-9 count. Junior midfielder Jo-Ann Merheb (Bethel) recorded the first multiple-goal game of her three-year career to give Eastern a 2-0 lead 20 minutes into play and Marchitto scored her first with 13 minutes left in the first half to give the Warriors a 3-0 advantage at the half.

After being taken down in the box, Jo-Ann Merheb converted a penalty kick in the 10th minute for the first goal, and sophomore forward Taylor Buchanan (Ellington) sprung Jo-Ann Merheb with a perfect through-ball to make it 2-0. The first of Marchitto's three goals - all coming on 1v1 situations with the keeper from close range - came on assists from freshman midfielder Tamar Merheb (Bethel) and sophomore assist leader Kelly Wallace (South Windsor).

Buchanan scored her team-leading 11th goal of the year to make it 5-0 with ten minutes left. The 11 goals equals the ninth-highest total in a season in program history.

Rhode Island, 2-6 in its last eight after opening the season with five straight wins, got on the scoreboard with five minutes left when junior forward Ashley Choiniere
worked a give-and-go with team scoring leader Alexis Smith and beat Eastern  sophomore keeper Mackenzie MacLeod (Northfield) on a breakaway with a hard, low shot under the charging keeper. The goal was the tenth of the season for Choiniere.

Junior keeper Theresa Pagnozzi (Waterford) made one save in the scoreless first half to notch her tenth straight win this year (11-0-0 in her career).

Eastern visits Trinity College Wednesday at 4 p.m.

Below: The Eastern women's soccer program celebrated its 25th Anniversary season Saturday with a reception in the morning and a ceremony at halftime of the Little East Conference match against Rhode Island College at the Mansfield Outdoor Complex. Special recognition was paid to the returning members (shown holding plaques in photo) of the inaugural 1986 team.



By Bill Mullins '12
Sports Information Staff

healy ericson slide_WEB8131.jpg

In sports, there are always some rarities; the athletic department here at Eastern Connecticut State University is no exception , and more specifically, neither are the school's cross country and track programs.

At right: Melissa Healy (foreground), and Amanda Ericson.

Under current tenth-year head coach Frank Poulin, there have only ever been two, four-year female cross country letterwinners.  This year,  two more student-athletes will join that exclusive club, of which the only members to date are Clara Juncadella (2005-2008) and Jessie Marshall (2003-2006).

The road to becoming the third and fourth four-year letterwinners has not been the easiest for seniors Melissa Healy of Naugatuck and Amanda Ericson of Bolton as much doubt had surrounded the careers of both.

Ericson, an individual who had always enjoyed running and thought she would always be someone who would run, had never quite envisioned being a member of a collegiate cross country team. As she was preparing for her freshman year of college, she had no intention of running at Eastern Connecticut. As summer drew to a close and the school year's approach seemed imminent, Ericson noticed a number of emails that had continuously inundated her inbox from Coach Poulin. Says Ericson, "I kept getting emails about the upcoming (2007) season and that got me really excited about it (the season)," and she ended up enjoying it immensely.

The story was slightly different for Healy, who fully intended from the outset to run during her collegiate career, but experienced numerous injuries throughout her career. These injuries have included a stress fracture in her foot, which has ultimately resulted in Healy's need to run using orthotics in her shoes, as well as a hip condition which prevents her from taking extended periods of time off from running. At the end of each running season it is suggested that runner's take about two weeks off  but that's not the case for Healy, "I can't take more than two days off consecutively without my hip acting up and causing me problems,"  says Healy, referring to the problems which prevent her from being able to run at her maximum ability and ones that create a great deal of pain.

ericson 300_0947.jpg

Fifth-year assistant coach Brent Terry has been the programs' running coach throughout the career of Healy and Ericson. He has a number of adjectives to describe the two seniors. The word "perseverance" comes to his mind immediately. "They came in believing that if they did the work, they would improve a lot, and they have improved a lot," praises Terry. "And I think that the other girls on the team really respect that. The other girls realize that Melissa and Amanda have improved so much because they've done  everything right, and I think that just raises the level of excitement about what's possible.  "Frank (Poulin) and I knew they there were going to be good and that they were going to get better, but we didn't see - maybe by the end of the year - a ten-minute improvement in the 10K (10, 000 meters).

Above: Amanda Ericson

Added Terry, "If you put in the work, you improve, but a lot of (runners) don't take that next step, where they really believe that it's working. Melissa and Amanda have totally bought into that ," says Terry, who notes that the duo constantly asks what they need to do to improve even more, above and beyond the team's regular workouts.

Through it all, though, both of these student-athletes have managed to run in all but one of the varsity races that the team has competed in during their careers: Ericson did not compete in last year's ECAC meet in order to be rested for the next weekend's NCAA New England Regional meet. Technically, Healy has never actually been idle on the day of a meet, but decided to run the junior varsity race last year at the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth Invitational while she was still recovering  from a stress fracture in her foot sustained the previous summer. 

Both student-athletes have also seen a great deal of improvement in their times over four years. The course at UMass-Dartmouth is the only one that has remained unchanged for those four years and it is here where the time improvement can be seen most clearly. Ericson has improved her time on this course by an astonishing four minutes since her freshman season in 2007, while Healy has improved by nearly two and a half minutes.

healycloseup_SLIDE_7683.jpgThe improvement that they have shown can be strongly linked to both student athletes' ability to work together and help to push each other in practice and in meets. The notable different styles and running abilities have actually helped each of them . As someone who is traditionally a stronger starter, Ericson  gives Healy a little extra push at the beginning of a race. Healy, a traditionally stronger finisher,  then gives a great push to Ericson at the end of the race. When Ericson has little left in her tank, she can turn to Healy, and with the competitive nature of their friendship, is able to give that final push.

At left: Melissa Healy

"They use each other as a measuring stick," says Terry, who points to  their healthy rivalry.  "They don't like to lose to each other, but on the other hand, they want the other one to get better because they know if the other one's improving, then so are they. They've changed a little over their careers, in that when they run a pretty good race now, they're disappointed and mad at themselves because  their own expectations have changed. They've learned that fine line where you want to be happy with your effort, but not satisfied."

In addition to being four-year cross country letterwinners, both seniors will finish their career with double digit-letters. Ericson will have earned ten by May, including three each in indoor and outdoor track. Healy, in the meantime, will have become the first student-athlete under Poulin to have earned twelve, four each in indoor and outdoor track, in addition to cross country .

"It will never be possible for me," observesTerry, "to think of one without thinking of the other one."

The crowning jewel in the careers of both runners is their current membership to the 4x1500 meter relay school-record team. On a rainy day in April at the Eastern Connecticut State Invitational meet, along with teammates Amanda Quinones and Denica Gagnon the group set a new program standard with a time of 23:08.38, a record which could potentially be improved upon this spring as all four student-athletes return.

"You  dream about athletes like them who are just (easy to work with)," offers Terry. "They're funny and enthusiastic and have similar personalities. It says a lot about them then they're not the fastest runners on the team - although they are much closer to that than they were - but they're still looked upon for leadership from everybody because they've been the ones who have sort of carried the flag for the women's team (for four years)."

Healy and Ericson's determination is mirrored in their academic performance, where, despite their year-long commitment to running, each has managed to earn an E-Club Scholar-Athlete award. Healy, who expects to graduate in May, is a Business Administration major pursuing a career in marketing. Ericson, planning to graduate in December of 2011, is majoring in Elementary Education and Mathematics.

A stand-up salute due both Amanda Ericson and Melissa Healy for having the heart and determination to stick with the sport they love and join exclusive company as four-year letterwinners in the sport of cross country.

W-Soccer Up to Amherst Challenge, 2-1

Unbeaten Warriors successful in first defense of No. 1 regional ranking

cutlergodwin72dpigroupPicture 631.jpg

WARRIORlogo2009_72dpi.jpgAMHERST, Mass. - The Eastern Connecticut State University women's soccer team cleared one of its most formidable hurdles in its quest for its first undefeated regular season after turning back regional nemesis Amherst College, 2-1, Wednesday afternoon at Hitchcock Field.

At right: Defenders Megan Godwin (19) and Rachel Cutler (14) celebrate the win. (Liz Cutler photo)

Its first outing since receiving a first-ever No. 1 regional rating yesterday in the NSCAA New England rankings, Eastern (12-0-1) scored an early goal, and tacked on an important insurance goal on a penalty kick midway through the second half en route to its 13 straight unbeaten decision this year and tenth win in a row.  Amherst (4-4-2) is ranked No. 8 in New England.

Following Trinity's College's first loss of the season Tuesday, Eastern entered the contest against Amherst as the only ranked unbeaten team in New England (and one of only eight in this week's national Top 25). And the Warriors maintained that distinction after sophomore midfielder Daniela Marchitto (Orange) and junior midfielder Jo-Ann Merheb (Bethel) staked Eastern to a 2-0 lead in support of junior keeper Theresa Pagnozzi (Waterford), who needed only three saves to win a record ninth straight decision of the year without a loss and post her tenth career victory in as many decisions.

Marchitto's sixth goal of the season in the 13th minute off an assist from sophomore midfielder Kelly Wallace (South Windsor) was the first by Eastern in the four career starts of Amherst senior keeper Allie Horwitz, who had combined on a shutout when the Lord Jeffs blanked Eastern, 3-0, a year ago at Hitchkock Field in the first round of the NCAA Division III Tournament.  The goal also ended a string of five straight shutouts by the Lord Jeffs against the Warriors, Eastern having lost four and tied one in that scoreless stretch.

Wednesday's first goal resulted after Horwitz sprinted off her line in hopes of beating Marchitto and Wallace to a long ball that was played toward the box. Wallace beat Horwitz to the ball and pushed a shot that appeared headed over the end line. However, Marchitto chased it down and left-footed a shot that rolled along the end line before catching the inside netting. Marchitto's goal came minutes after both her and sophomore forward Taylor Buchanan (Ellington) just missed on opportunites, Horwitz stopping Marchitto's hard shot from inside the box and Buchanan sending an open shot wide of the post.

Amherst had a number of chances to break through late in the first half, but couldn't. A header by junior defender Jill Kochanck caromed off the post and ended up out of bounds, and soon after freshman forward Nicole Leonard (Rutherford, NJ) cleaned up a defensive mistake by beating an Amherst opponent and clearing a dangerous ball off the goal line.

Despite challenging Horwitz several times - including consecutive bids by first-year sophomore forward Chelsea Downer (Colchester) -- Eastern could not add to its one-goal lead through the first 23 minutes of the second half. The Warriors were eventually awarded a penalty kick that Merheb converted after Downer was taken down in the box in the 69th minute. A starter in nine matches this year, Downer provided a boost off the bench against Amherst by forcing Horwitz to come up with saves on all four of her shots on goal.

The Warriors' two-goal edge stood up for only four minutes, at which time Amherst sophomore forward Hannah Cooper knocked in a crossing pass at the far post to cut the lead in half and deny Pagnozzi  her fourth shutout in eight starts.

The win was only the second for Eastern against Amherst at Hitchcock Field since 1988. Eastern won, 2-1, in its first trip to Amherst in 1988, but was 1-5-1 until Wednesday. Its only victory in those seven games came in 2002 on Jen Ferrari's game-ender in overtime.

In 73 previous seasons of Eastern women's and men's soccer, two teams have finished the regular season unbeaten. In consecutive seasons in 1968 and 1969, the men finished unbeaten on the way to New England championships.

Eastern plays the first of five remaining regular-season matches Saturday at 1 p.m. when it hosts Little East Conference opponent Rhode Island College.


W-Volleyball: Warriors Come Up Short

Eastern can;t finish off Rhode Island, remains winless in Little East

slonski72dpi_4356.jpgPROVIDENCE, R.I. - The Eastern Connecticut State University women's volleyball team couldn't put away Rhode Island College, and because of that, remained winless in the Little East Conference Tuesday night following a 3-2 loss at the Murray Center.

At left: Samantha Slonski receives a serve Tiesday night at Rhode Island College.

Rhode Island (10-14, 1-3 little east) erased a 2-to-1 deficit by breaking from an 19-all tie to capture the fourth set, then overcame an early 4-1 deficit to clinch the deciding set and end a four-match losing streak. Set scores were 25-20, 22-25, 25-20, 22-25, 9-15.

The Warriors were coming off three wins this past weekend that boasted them to their own Crabtree Classic, and moved to within a set of their fourth straight win after taking two of the first three against Rhode Island. Eastern led by as many as four points early in the fourth set before the hosts broke a 19-all tie with three straight points that gave it the momentum for good.

Two kills by junior Kristianna Ibsen (Shelton) and one by sophomore Katie Wilson (Pittsburg, CA) helped stake Eastern to a quick 4-1 lead in set 5, but Rhode Island responded with a 7-1 run that powered it to a three-point lead from which Eastern could not recover. A Rhode Island service error and another kill by Wilson pulled the Warriors to within 8-7, but an Eastern service error and attack error, followed by a Rhode Island kill all but ensured the win for the Anchorwomen.

Led by sophomore Danielle Bourne (Branford), Eastern attacked at .333 to claim the first set, and after RIC tied the match, the Warriors attacked at .250 to take the third set and move out to a 2-to-1 lead. Junior libero Taylor Abelli (Cheshire) contributed eight digs in that third-set victory, With the score tied 14-14 in that set, Eastern put together four straight kills - two by Wilson, one by junior Samantha Slonski (Griswold) and one by sophomore Shannon Burke (Manchester) - to take command.

Wilson and Ibsen shared the team lead with 14 kills, Wilson attacking at .500 (no errors on 28 attempts) and Ibsen attacked at .353. Abelli had a team-high 25 digs and had a .913 reception percentage on 23 attempts, while Slonski had eight kills, 34 assists, three blocks and 14 digs. Junior Gianna Trombino (East Moriches, NY) had four aces - all coming in the second set and three in succession - to go along with five kills, ten assists and nine digs. Wilson had four of the team's 11 blocks.

In five-set decisions this year, Eastern slipped to 2-3 while RIC won for the first time in three decisions.

Eastern visits Amherst College Tuesday at 7 p.m.

Rhode Island College 3, Eaastern Conn. 2

Eastern Conn. (11-11, 0-4 little east)   25   22   25   22   9

Rhode Island (10-14,1-3 little east)      20   25   20   25  15

Field Hockey: Lazers Show Warriors

One year after seven-goal loss, Lasell turns back Eastern by 1-0 score

NEWTON, Mass. - One year after blowing out Lasell College by seven goals, the Eastern Connecticut State University field hockey managed only two shots on net in a 1-0 non-confereence loss Tuesday afternoon.

Lasell (5-9) scored the only goal in the 27th minute on the fourth goal of the season by sophomore Katelyn Fabri, and junior goalie Christine Thornton needed only two saves to record her second shutout of the season.

Behind senior keeper Tia Mucciarone (Franklin, MA), Eastern (3-10) was coming off a 1-0 Little East Conference victory over Framingham State University. Against the Lazers, Mucciarone made seven saves, but the Warriors managed to put only two of their eight shots on goal, those coming from senior forward Ashley Del Vecchio (Fairfield) and senior midfielder Dana McLaughlin (West Hartford).

Now 1-7 on the road this year, Eastern lost for the first time in this seven-game series with Lasell.

Eastern visits Salem State University in a conference match Saturday at noon.


Women's Soccer: No. 1 in New England

Still unbeaten, Warriors jump five spots in NE poll; gain national rank

teamno172dpi_3925.jpgWILLIMANTIC, Conn. - For the first time in the 25-year history of the Eastern Connecticut State  University women's soccer program, the Warriors have been selected as the No.-1 ranked team in the NSCAA Division III New England soccer rankings, released Tuesday.

One of only two teams in the poll with undefeated records, Eastern (11-0-1) jumped into the top spot for the first time ever after being ranked in a tie for fifth heading into the week. During the week, Eastern shut out Wesleyan University, 2-0, and Little East Conference opponent  University of Southern Maine, 1-0. The win over USM was Eastern's ninth straight, establishing a program record. The 12-match unbeaten streak is also the longest in program history.

In addition to the top regional ranking, the Warriors moved into the national poll, at No. 13.

Prior to today's regional poll, Eastern had been ranked as high as second (or tied for second) in the New England poll seven times, most recently on Oct. 3, 2004 when it began the season at 9-1-1. Nationally, the team had previously been ranked 13th or higher nine times, most recently when it was rated 12th following its 9-1-1 start Oct. 3, 2004. The team's highest national ranking is tenth. following a 10-1-0 start on Oct. 20, 2002.

Among the four teams ranked ahead of  Eastern in last week's New England poll, No. 1 Williams college split two matches, No. 2 Brandeis University lost its match, No. 3 Amherst College lost in overtime, and No. 4 Wheaton College split two matches. The only other unbeaten team in this week's Top 10 is Trinity College (4-0-3).

Under the direction of 11th-year head coach Chris D'Ambrosio, Eastern is 4-0-0 in the Little East Conference after capturing last year's LEC tournament title. Eastern has outscored its 12 opponents by better than 4-to-1, has posted six shutouts, but has won six of its matches by one goal. The team was a 1-1 overtime verdict against Montclair State University in the opening round of the Manhattanville College Valiant Classic Sept. 11.

Sophomore Taylor Buchanan (Ellington) leads Eastern with ten goals and 20 points, sophomore Daniela Marchitto (Orange) adding five goals and 13 points and sophomore Kelly Wallace (South Windsor) four goals and 11 points. Junior Theresa Pagnozzi (Waterford)  and sophomore Mackenzie MacLeod (Northfield) have shared goalkeeper duties, recording a 0.57 GAA and .841 save percentage. Senior defender Lauren Hickey (Southwick, MA) averages 75 minutes of action per game, freshman back Megan Godwin (Manchester) 74.

Eastern visits Amherst College Wednesday at 4 p.m.


Soccer: Two Gain LEC Recognition

Hickey and Furman honored for defense and offense, respectively


hickeyLEC72 707.jpgNORTH DARTMOUTH, Mass. - Senior defender Lauren Hickey (Southwick, MA) and junior forward Matt Furman (Montville) have been recognized by the Little East Conference in its weekly soccer awards program.

At left: Lauren Hickey (7) (Liz Cutler photo)

Hickey was named the women's Defensive Player-of-the-Week and Furman the men's Offensive Player-of-the-Week for leading their respective teams to two wins each that included a shutout victory in conference play.

The weekly honor was the first in the career of Hickey, last year's LEC Defensive Player-of-the-Year. In his first season last year after transferring from the University  of Rhode Island, Furman was recognized once as Offensive Player and once as Rookie-of-the-Week.

After missing six games with a facial injury, Furman returned to score four of the team's six goals last week, including a hat trick in a 3-1 win Sunday over Kean University, ranked No. 10  in the NSCAA South Atlantic Region. The previous day, Furman scored the second goal in a 3-0 victory over the University of Southern Maine. The Kean game represented the first multiple-goal game in the career of Furman, who  has seven goals in seven matches this year.
Ranked fifth in New England with a 9-3-1 overall record, the Eastern men have won four of their last five and share second place in the conference with a 3-1-0 record. The Warriors are the defending conference champion.


A 2009 All-New England fourth-team selection, Hickey played all 180 minutes in two games as the Warriors' defense posted their fifth and sixth shutouts of the season. Hickey, a four-year starter, has played the entire match six times this year in helping Eastern to six shutouts and a 0.77 goals-against average (7 goals in 12 matches).

At right; Matt Furman (21)

The Eastern women (11-0-1)  are ranked fifth in New England, and the 2009 LEC tournament champions are atop the LEC standing at 4-0-0. The squad has set program records this year for consecutive games unbeaten (currently 12) and consecutive wins. The team's record ninth straight victory came in Saturday's victory.

The women visit Amherst College Wednesday at 4 p.m. while the men visit Rhode Island College in an LEC match Saturday at 1 p.m. Amherst is rated third in New England, 25th nationally.


W-XC: Improvement Rules the Day

Saturday, Oct. 9, 2010

Sixty-seven seconds faster than last year, Quinones among Top 20


WARRIORlogo2009_72dpi.jpgWESTFIELD, Mass. -  Improvement was the order of the day when the Eastern Connecticut State University women's cross country team ran to a 13th-place finish in a field of 31 teams Saturday at the 14th Annual James Earley Invitational Saturday, hosted by Westfield State University at Stanley Park.

Above: Brittany Miskell

Running under ideal conditions over 5,000 meters following a two-week layoff, all six runners who ran the course last year made significant improvements. Senior Melissa Healy (Naugatuck) and sophomore Brittany Miskell (Woodstock)  submitted the most significant improvements, bettering their times from a year ago by 2:54 and 2:27, respectively. Sophomore Cora Gingras (East Hampton)  ran 1:26 faster and sophomore Denica Gagnon (Colchester) chopped 70 seconds off her time at this race from a year ago while junior Amanda Quinones (Trumbull) improved her time from last year by 67 as the team's top finisher. Senior Amanda Ericson (Bolton) took 31 seconds off her time last year.

Quinones finished among the top six percent of runners in the race, racing to 20th place in a time of 19:41. Freshmen followed Quinones at the tape for the Warriors, Katie France (Portland) placing 53rd overall and Alexa Palasky (Griswold) claiming 95th. France totaled 45 points in a time of 20:34 and Palasky 82 at 21:23.  Gingras and Gagnon were the team's fourth and fifth-place scorers. Gingras scored 95 points (112th overall)  in a time of 21:47, Gagnon scoring 115 points (192nd overall) in a time of 22:41. Healy (156th overall) and senior Chelsie Lawson (Sandwich, MA) rounded out the top seven. Healy was timed in 22:47, Lawson (157th) was clocked in 22:48.

Vassar won the team title, running away with the crown with 28 points over runner-up Trinity College (63). The Brewers  placed all five of their scorers among the top 12.

Eastern hosts Rhode Island College Saturday at 10:30 a.m. at Mansfield Hollow State Park in its only home meet of the year.

Team Results
(31 teams)

Top 10

1. Vassar College 28; 2. Trinity College 63; 3. Westfield State U. 135; 4. Salve Regina U. 140; 5. U.S. Coast Guard Academy 153; 6. U. of New England 177; 7. Bridgewater State U. 213; 8. Rhode Island College 262; 9. SUNY Delhi 285; 10. Babson College 297.
13. EASTERN CONN. 357.

Individual Results
(311 finishers)
Eastern's Finishers

20. Amanda Quinones 19:41; 53. Katie France 20:34; 95. Alexa Palasky 21:23; 112. Cora Gingras 21:47; 152. Denica Gagnon 22:41; 156. Melissa Healy 22:47; 157. Chelsie Lawson 22:48; 172. Amanda Ericson 23:05; 182. Brittany Miskell 23:20; 192. Haley Smith 23:27; 202. Ashlee James 23:48; 214. Wendy Bouton 24:13.


Men's Cross Country: Three Lead Way

Saturday, Oct. 9, 2010

Hackett-Miller-Secore  run 1-2-3 again in pacing Warriors at Earley Invite


WARRIORlogo2009_72dpi.jpgWESTFIELD, Mass. - First-year junior Connor Hackett (Bolton) paced the Eastern Connecticut State University men's cross country team at the finish for the third straight race and was followed again by sophomore Nick Miller (Norwich) and freshman Brody Secore (South Windsor) during a 12th-place finish at the 14th Annual James Earley Invitational Saturday, hosted by Westfield State University at Stanley Park.

Above: Brad Beausoleil

Hackett, a two-time Little East Conference Rookie-of-the-Week, placed 31st overall in a field of 288 finishers (top 11 pcrcent), scoring 29 points overall. For the third straight race, he was followed by Miller (81st overall/70 points) and Secore (100th/82).

After taking eighth place as a team a year ago - due in large part to Dave Hunt's second-place finish, the Warriors again placed in the upper half of the 26-team field, checking in at 12th place. Hackett was only about a minute off Hunt's time of a year ago, logging a mark of 27:31. Miller was timed in 28:48 and Secore 29:06 over 8,000 meters.

Secore was the team's No. 5 runner in his collegiate debut a month ago at Fitchburg State but has moved up to No. 3 in each of the last three races. Miller led all Eastern finishers in the season-opener, Hackett taking the top spot Saturday for the third straight race.

All 13 runners on the roster competed for Eastern. Senior Ken Landry (East Hampton) was fourth and sophomore Brad Beausoleil (Plainfield) rounded out the team's scoring. Landry was  102nd overall (84 points) in a time of 29:11 and Beausoleil 104th (86) in a time of 29:13. Completing the top seven runners were junior Bryan Jorge (Bristol) and junior Ryan Hughes (Cheshire). Jorge was 113 overall in a time of 29:22 and Hughes 142nd at 30:02.

Beausoleil chopped 54 seconds off his time of a year ago at this race as the club's seventh runner across the line, Jorge knocked off 57 seconds as last year's No. 9 runner and Hughes a whopping  1:43 as last year's No. 9 man.

Eastern was competing for the first time since participating in the Codfish Bowl two weekends ago.

Vassar College outran 25 opposing teams to capture the team title, putting its first four runners among the Top 20 and its five scoring runners among the Top 25.

Eastern hosts Rhode Island College Saturday at 10:30 a.m. at Mansfield Hollow State Park in its only home meet of the year.

Team Results
(26 teams)
Top 10

1. Vassar College 75; 2. Westfield State U. 122; 3. Trinity College 126; 4. Bridgewater State U. 129; 5. SUNY Delhi 211; 6. Rhode Island College 258; 7. U.S. Coast Guard Academy  243; 8. Union College 269; 9.U. of New England  317; 10. Gordon College  321.

Individual Results
(288 finishers)
Eastern's Finishers

31. Conor Hackett 27:31; 81. Nick Miller 28:48; 100. Brody Secore 29:06; 102. Ken Landry 29:11; 104. Brad Beausoleil 29:13; 113. Bryan Jorge 29:22; 142. Ryan Hughes 30:02; 146. Ryan Franklin 30:06; 155. Colin Whiston 30:19.170. Alejandro Hernandez 30:37; 177. Joey Perucki  30:48; 223. Tim Callahan  32:30; 225. Stephen White 32:50.


M-Soccer: Furman Back with a Bang

 Junior striker nets hat trick as Warriors win second in as many days


SoccerAnnivLogo.jpgMANSFIELD, Conn. -- Junior forward Matt Furman (Montville) recorded the first multiple-goal game of his career, recording a hat trick in his second game back from injury to power the Eastern Connecticut State University men's soccer team to its fourth win in the last five matches with a 3-1 victory over Kean University Sunday evening at the Mansfield Outdoor Complex.

At right: Matt Furman (21)

In his return Saturday from an facial injury that forced him out of six games, Furman came off the bench to score the team's  second goal in a 3-0 Little East Conference win over the University of Southern Maine. Sunday, the second-year transfer from the University of Rhode Island gave Eastern an early lead with a goal in the eighthth minute, and he added his team-leading sixth and seventh goals of the season in a span of five minute early in the second half to snap a 1-1 tie.

In seven matches this year, Furman has matched his entire goal total in 21 matches last year.Seven of his career 14 goals are game-winners.

 Eastern is rated No. 5 in the NSCAA New England Region while Kean is ranked No. 10 in the NSCAA South Atlantic Region.


Former players and coaches were saluted during a halftime ceremony commemorating 50 years of men's soccer at the University. Earlier in the day, a dinner and speaking program which included 100 present and past players and coaches was held at the Student Center. 

Furman's first goal came when his shot from near the goal line was deflected past freshman keeper Tyler Callahan. and set up on a pass from senior midfielder Sean Capezzone (Colchester). That lead held up for nearly 40 minutes before Kean tied the match two minutes into the second half on the second goal of the season from senior back Kyle Venerable.

Furman buried a one-timer on a pass from sophomore back Bradley Fletcher (Middletown) to give Eastern the lead for good four minutes later against second-half senior keeper Alfredo Oquendo, and Furman added an insurance goal soon after. The final goal followed a corner kick from junior  back Matt Esposito (East Haven)  that was knocked to the foot of Furman on a deflection off the head of Eastern sophomore midfielder Jon DeCasanova (Glastonbury).

Kean had a number of strong shots sail wide or over the net as Eastern junior keeper Carl Appel (West Windsor, NJ) made only one save to record his 37th career win against 11 losses and four ties..

Eastern was playing its second game in as many days and Kean its fifth in nine days, all away from home.

Eastern visits Rhode Island College Saturday at 1 p.m. in a Little East Conference match.


Women's Soccer: A Dirty Dozen

 By beating USM, Warriors set program record with ninth straight win

dambrosio 72dpi686.jpgGORHAM, Maine - Sophomore forward Taylor Buchanan (Ellington) scored her tenth goal of the season with 16 minutes left to lift the Eastern Connecticut State University women's soccer team to its 12th straight match without a loss this season, a 1-0 Little East Conference victory over the University of Southern Maine Saturday at the USM Soccer Field.

Above In the pre-season, head Coach Chris D'Ambrosio might not have envisioned record-setting 12-match unbeaten and nine-game winning streaks. (Liz Cutler photo)

The win is Eastern's (11-0-1, 4-0-0 little east) ninth in a row - breaking the former mark of eight set five seasons ago. The Warriors had already set the program record for consecutive victories in a season this year. The shutout is the third straight for Eastern and sixth this season.

Buchanan scored in her fourth straight match, posting her third straight game-winning goal and fourth of the season. She has seen goals in the current four-game span. Buchanan picked up a loose ball at the six-yard box and put a shot into the back of the net.  Sophomore forward Chelsea Downer (Colchester) crossed the ball from the right end line, the ball deflecting off the head of a USM defender, to the waiting Buchanan, who made no mistake. A first-year transfer,  Downer was credited with her team-leading fourth assist.

Since losing its first two matches against Southern Maine  (4-9-0, 2-2-0 little east) in  head coach Chris D'Ambrosio's first since in 2000, Eastern has won 11 straight against the Huskies.

Ranked fifth in New England, Eastern's 11 victories equal the most by any Top 10 team. The Warriors remain one of only two Top 10 teams without a loss, joining Trinity College (4-0-3).

In her first appearance in 18 days, sophomore keeper Mackenzie MacLeod (Northfield)  played a save-less second half in relief of junior Theresa Pagnozzi (Waterford) to record her first win since the opening weekend of the season. Pagnozzi played the first half, making two saves, including a brilliant leg save on sophomore Cathy Wise in the final seconds of the half to keep the match scoreless.  Pagnozzi has played 289 minutes and 31 seconds since allowing her last goal Sept. 29 against Salem State.
Eastern travels to Amherst College Wednesday at 4  p.m. The Lord Jeffs are rated No. 3 in New England, 25th nationally.





Men's Soccer Climbs in LEC Race

With 3-0 win, Warriors pull to within a point of conference leader Keene

furman_72_5771.jpgMANSFIELD, Conn. -  The Eastern Connecticut State University men's soccer team scored LEC25.jpgtwice in a span of 11 minutes in the second half to pull away from the University of Southern Maine in a 3-0 Little East Conference victory Saturday afternoon at the Mansfield Outdoor Complex.

Above Matt Furman (21)

Ranked fifth in New England, Eastern (8-3-1, 3-1-0 little east) closed to within a point of LEC leader Keene State College, which played Massachusetts Dartmouth to a 1-1 overtime draw Saturday. The Warriors share second place with Rhode Island College, which shut out Plymouth State by an identical 3-0 count. Eastern entered the day locked in a four-way tie for second place, three points behind Keene.

Midway through the first half, junior forward Cory Tobler (Portland) scored his team-leading fifth goal of the season on assists from senior midfielder Sean Capezzone (Colchester) and sophomore back Bradley Fletcher (Middletown) to give Eastern a 1-0 lead, and the Warriors tacked on goals 11 minutes apart midway through the second half.

Coming off the bench in 36 minutes, junior forward Matt Furman (Montville) scored his fourth goal of the season in his return after missing six games with an injury to make it 2-0 on an assist from freshman midfielder Zach Kice (Denver, CO), who recorded his first career point on the play. With 13 minutes left, junior midfielder Sean Collins (Bristol) scored his first goal of the season when he hammered a one-timer inside the right post when the ball deflected to him at the top of the box.

Buoyed in part by the return of Furman, Eastern enjoyed its first three-goal match since the opening week of the season when it totalled eight goals in two of the season's first three matches.

Although Eastern collected eight of its  13 shots in the first half, Southern Maine (3-8-1, 2-2-0 little east) senior keeper David Kreps made a handful of outstanding saves to keep the game scoreless. With the Warriors nursing their 1-0 lead with seven minutes left in the first half, Kreps robed Eastern sophomore midfielder Jon DeCasanova (Glastonbury) from point-blank range, and Furman's follow-up sailed wide.  Three minutes later, Kreps denied Furman on a breakaway to keep the Eastern at one goal heading into the break. Krep's best save came midway through the second half when he dove to the post, getting a hand on a shot by freshman forward Romaro Johnson (Bridgeport) who was trying to sneak it inside the far left post on a shot from the right.

First-team all-conference junior keeper Carl Appel (West Windsor, NJ) stopped two shots to record his 17th career saves for the Warriors. Appel was not involved on Southern Maine's two best scoring chances: freshman midfielder Branden Lever hit  the post midway through the second half and senior forward Nick Johnson put his attempt over the top from the left side after sophomore midfielder Matt Powers slotted him a perfect through-ball.

The win was the 50th in the four-year head coaching career of Greg DeVito, who has lost 19 and tied eight overall. DeVito improved his four-year conference regular-season record to 18-4-3.

Eastern hosts Kean University Sunday at 6 p.m. The Cougars are rated No. 10 in the NSCAA South Atlantic Region.



W-Volleyball: Crabtree Champions!

Women's Volleyball
Crabtree Classic

Saturday's Results

Emmanuel College 3, U. of New England 2

Emmanuel (9-10)  25 20 25 21 15
New England (11-8)  18 25 12 25 10

Statistical leaders:
Yun-Ting Lee  30 digs, 31 rec. attempts with an .871 pct.
Megan Clary  14 digs
Jenna Ross  16 kills, .378 attack pct., 16 rec. attempts with a .938 pct.
Samantha Andazola  9 kills
Kathryne Olsen  33 assists
Rebecca Stanton  15 kills, .467 attack pct.
U. of New England
Kirsta Adie  14 digs, 22 rec. attempts with an .864 pct.
Jackie Stone  10 rec. attempts with a 1.000 pct.
Maria Kuehl  19 assists
Paige Curran  17 kills with an .800 attack pct.3 blocks
Lindsey Cashell  9 kills with a .615 attack pct.
Kristen Edwards 7 kills with a .333 attack pct., 3 blocks 

                                   Eastern Conn. 3, Worcester State U. 0

Worcester State (10-10)  12 19 22
Eastern Conn. (10-10)  25 25 25

Statistical leaders:
Eastern Conn
Katie Wilson  10 kills with a 1.000 attack pct., 2 blocks
Gianna Trombino 6 kills with a 1.000 attack pct., 8 digs
Rachael Joy  7 kills with a .333 attack pct., 8 digs
Taylor Abelli  20 rec.  attempts with a .900 pct., 22 digs
Samantha Slonski 9 digs, 21 assists
Worcester State
Joanne Grenier  17 digs
Megan Brown  9 digs, 8 kills
Jodi Hallett  15 assists
Katey Figella  7 kills

                                    U. of New England 3, Worcester State U. 1

New England (12-8)  25 25 24 25
Worcester State (10-11)  14 15 26 13

Statistical leaders:
U. of New England
Abby Downs  17 digs
Maria Kuehl  12 digs, 31 assists, 4 aces
Nicole Kalinowski 11 rec. attempts with a 1.000 pct.
Angie Brunette  4 blocks
Paige Currant  15 kills with a 1.000 attack pct., 2 blocks
Kristen Edwards 11 kills with a .727 attack pct.
Lindsey Cashell  7 kills with a .538 attack pct.
Worcester State
Megan Brown  11 digs, 8 kills
Kristen Koles  9 kills
Joanne Grenier  10 digs
Shawna Strazziere 10 digs, 26 assists
Becky Lebel  3 blocks

Eastern Conn. 3, Emmanuel College 1

Emmanuel (9-11)  25 14 18 23
Eastern Conn. (11-10)  15 25 25 25

Statistical leaders:
Eastern Conn
Kristianna Ibsen 12 kills with a .276 attack pct.
Erynn Miller  13 kills with a .600 attack pct.; 19 rec. attempts with a .947 pct., 15 digs
Katie Wilson  12 kills with a .323 attack pct.
Taylor Abelli  25 digs
Alyssa Ruta  17 digs
Gianna Trombino 8 kills
Samantha Slonski 41 assists, 13 digs, 7 kills with a .250 attack pct.
Danielle Bourne 10 digs
Yun-Ting Lee  27 digs, 24 rec. attempts with a .958 pct.
Jenna Ross  10 kills, 19 rec. attempts with a .947 pct.
Samantha Andazola 16 kills with a .368 attack pct., 24 digs
Kathryne Olsen  40 assists
Rebecca Stanton 8 kills

                                                               Final Standings
Eastern Conn.   3-0
Emmanuel College  2-1
U. of New England  1-2
Worcester State U.  0-3

All-Tournament Team

Taylor Abelli   Jr. Eastern Conn.  Cheshire, CT
Rebecca Stanton  Jr. Emmanuel  Quincy, MA
Paige Curran   So. U. of New England Chelmsford, MA
Megan Brown   Fr. Worcester State U. Dartmouth, MA
*-Most Outstanding Player 


Field Hockey: Warriors Butt Rams

 They end seven-game skid with 1-0 victory over Framingham State

malito_raw_6521.jpgMANSFIELD, Conn. - Junior back Erica LEC25.jpgMalito (Killingly) scored her second goal of the season ten minutes into the second half and senior goalie Tia Mucciarone (Franklin,MA) posted her first shutout of the season as the Eastern Connecticut State University field hockey team halted a seven-game skid with a 1-0 Little East Conference victory over Framingham State University Saturday afternoon at the Mansfield Outdoor Complex.

Above: Erica Malito

A 6-1 loser to Framingham (4-7, 2-5 little east) a year ago when the Rams shared the regular-season LEC championship and advanced to the tournament semifinals, Eastern (3-9, 1-6 little east) recorded its first shutout of the season as it broke into the conference win column.

The goal was the first of the season since the opener for Malito, who began the scoring thrust when she took the team's first of only two penalty corners in the match.  She scored from in front of the cage on a pass from junior midfielder Liz Bolduc (Stonington), who was credited with her first assist of the season, fifth of her career.

Mucciarone's win was her first since her second start of the season. She made five saves to outduel Framingham senior goalie Allesha Kenyon and post the the squad's first shutout of the season.

Eastern played the match without senior sweeper Rachel Cocola (South Windsor), who missed her first start of the season with a bruised foot sustained in the team's previous match against Wesleyan Thursday. The Warriors got outstanding midfield play from junior Rochelle Normandin (South Windsor) and senior forward Ashley Del Vecchio (Fairfield). Normandin controlled the midfield for the Warriors with her stickhandling and ball-carrying ability while Del Vecchio forced Kenyon to make saves on all three of her shots.

Eastern visits Lasell College Tuesday at 3:30 p.m.



Women's Volleyball: Crabtree Day 1

Women's Volleyball
Crabtree Classic
at Willimantic, Conn.

Eastern Conn. 3, U. of New England 2

New England (11-7)     23     18    26     25     13
Eastern Conn. (9-10)   25     25    24     19     15

Notes: In the fifth set, Eastern broke to a 9-2 lead behind a succession of UNE net and attack errors but the Nor'easters bounced back, finally tying the match at 13-13. After a timeout, Eastern closed out the win on a pair of kills from Danielle Bourne. Gianna Trombino also had 3 kills in 3 tries in the final set.

Statistical Leaders
Eastern Conn.
Danielle Bourne 7 kills with a .357 attack pct.
Kristianna Ibsen 11 kills, 3 blocks
Katie Wilson 7 kills, 3 aces, 3 blocks
Erynn Miller 7 kills, 15 digs
Gianna Trombino 8 kills with a .294 attack pct.
Samantha Slonski 39 assists, 12 digs
Alyssa Ruta  10 digs
Taylor Abelli 9 digs
Julie Forler  3 blocks
U. of New England
Kirsta Addie  14 digs, 23 reception attempts with a .957 pct.
Kristen Edwards 13 digs, 10 kills with a .438 attack pct.
Maria Kuehl  34 assists
Angie Brunette 4 blocks
Paige Curran 3 bocks, 9 kills with a .556 attack pct.
Abby Davis  7 kills

Emmanuel College 3, Worcester State U. 0

Worcester (10-9)        12     10     20
Emmanuel (8-18)      25      25       25

Statistical Leaders
Jenna Ross   14 digs, 13 kills, 13 receptions with a .923 pct.
Samantha Andazola 11 digs, 6 kills, 4 aces
Kathrune Olsen  24 assists
Rebecca Stanton  8 kills
Worcester State
Megan Brown  7 kills, 6 digs
Brittney Ledoux  4 kills
Jodi Hallett   13 assists, 5 digs

Saturday's Schedule

Emmanuel College vs. U. of New England, 11 a.m.
Eastern Conn. vs. Worcester State, 11 a.m.
U. of New England vs. Worcester State, 2 p.m.
Eastern Conn. vs. Emmanuel College, 2 p.m.


mclaughli_head_72_2580.jpgBy Dana McLaughlinWARRIORlogo2009_72dpi.jpg

Sports Information Intern

For student-athletes, participating in athletics opens the door to many opportunities. For three Eastern Connecticut State University student-athletes this past summer, involvement in athletics opened the door to the world.

The three - men's lacrosse sophomore goalie Donald Berube of Tewksbury, MA, field hockey senior forward Melanie Proud of Wall Township, NJ, and softball junior pitcher Molly Rathbun of Hebron - all took advantage of the opportunity to compete oversees representing the United States. Berube had the opportunity to play for the USA Junior National Team in England while Proud and Rathbun were involved with USA Athletes International. Proud travelled to the island of Barbados and Rathbun to the island of Curacao.

Berube Strikes Gold in Manchester

DONALD BERUBE.JPGBerube (kneeling at far left in photo) traveled to Manchester, England from July 16 to July 25 to represent the US in the tournament. He joined a team consisting of a mix of Division I-II-III and college-bound athletes  ages 19-23, and he was one of three goalies. The goalies played each game on a rotation of first half, then split second half so all three could see equal playing time throughout the tournament.

The team played two games a day within the first two days of the trip, and then one game a day after that, and went undefeated in the "regular season". The top four teams made it to the playoffs and the United States was ranked first.
In the first round of the playoffs the US beat Tokyo and went on to face the Gin and Juice team in the championship game. The US was losing at halftime of the championship game, 
7-6. Berube entered the game for the third quarter and played a perfect game, giving the US a chance to gain the lead 10-7. The final score of the game was 13-10, the US - and Berube --  victorious.

Berube shared that the toughest competition in the game was the Canadian team, and the hardest aspect of playing overseas was the international rules. He had to figure out the rules during the game and adjust to them without much instruction.

One of the best moments of his trip, besides winning the gold medal in the tournament, was watching the US  National team also win the gold medal. "We got to the game and showed them our gold medals," said Berube, last year's Little East Conference Rookie-of-the-Year last spring, "and they let us in for free. We even got to rush the field after the National team had won."

Berube reported that this was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity and would recommend his fellow athletes take advantage of playing opportunities like this if they get the chance.

Proud, Teammates Mixed Business With Pleasure


Proud traveled to Bridgetown, Barbados July 11-18, to participate in the field hockey program supported by USA Athletes International. Proud competed on a team made up of eleven college athletes from all division, predominately Division III..

Proud (at far left in photo) and her teammates played four games at the Barbados Olympic Complex, two against the Barbados National team, and two  against the Barbados Junior National team. Proud's team was victorious in the two matches against  the Junior National team. "All the games we played were at night, and we would go early to watch the Barbados men's team practice which was really cool," noted Proud. "Their styles of play and skill levels are amazing."

The Athletes International program not only provided the athletes with a competitive learning experience but a cultural and historic learning experience as well. Daily activities were planned so the athletes could experience what life is like daily on the island. Snorkeling, a catamaran cruise, a safari tour, and a historic dance and dinner show were just some of the activities the athletes got to be a part of. This trip was the second time Proud had been to Barbados; however, it was the first time that she was able to explore and familiarize herself with the island.

Proud reports that this trip helped her grow as an athlete in many different ways, one being that her field knowledge and her ability to read her teammates improved greatly. She also noted some of her favorite moments from the trip were getting to know the different culture and adjusting to the native food choices, and competing against the national level players.
A Learning Experience for Rathbun

MOLLY RATHBUN.JPGRathbun (wearing orange shirt in back row of photo) traveled from June 6-13 to Curacao, an island in the South Caribbean, which is located near Aruba. The two-time All-America pitcher participated with other Division II and III athletes who were mostly entering their junior or senior years of college.

In Curacao, the team competed in six games -- two against a 16-U Curacao team and four against the Curacao National team - and won three. Rathbun reported that the toughest competition came against the National team, and that the biggest challenge was trying to adjust to their opponents' baseball-like playing style. For example, in a departure from the American game, the native players would intentionally hit batters.

On the trip, Rathbun also took the opportunity to experience cultural events and daily lifestyle on the island. Her organization scheduled a number of events for the athletes, among them trips to an ostrich farm, and an aquarium. Recreationally, they rode dune-buggies and spent a day on a yacht and also enjoyed snorkeling, wind surfing, kayaking and sailing.

Rathbun shared that she not only learned from the coaches but from her teammates as well. "It was a great experience to play with other athletes my age who have been exposed to different things that I have," explained Rathburn. "The coaches also had a different outlook on the game than the coaches that I've played for, so it is interesting to look at the game from many different angles."

This was the second time Rathbun had participated in a program like this, and she recommends it to her fellow athletes because  "it provides opportunities to make friends from different places, to experience different cultures, and to expand your knowledge of your sport."

About USA Athletes International

USA Athletes International is a non-profit organization which provides amateur athletes the opportunity to compete in International Olympic-style sporting events. Athletes are recommended to the program, and then contacted through their coaches for a playing opportunity. The program has reached success over the years because of its ability to provide athletes with not only a competitive aspect, but with educational and cultural experiences as well.

There is a fee to participate, which differs depending on destination and sport. The fee covers transportation, daily activities, meals, hotel, uniforms and accessories. If athletes cannot afford the entire cost of the trip, the program offers fundraising and scholarship opportunities to ensure that every athlete interested in participating has a fair chance.



Field Hockey Plays Give-and-Take

They score -- and allow -- most goals against Wesleyan in this series


MANSFIELD, Conn. - The good news is that the Eastern Connecticut State Unviversity field hockey team scored twice as many goals in a match against Wesleyan University than it ever had.

The bad news is that the Warriors allowed twice as many, losing a 10-2 non-conference decisions to the No. 16 nationally-ranked Cardinals Thursday night at the Mansfield Outdoor Complex

Above: Freshman goalie Marissa Poplawski denies Wesleyan's Alex Bean (17) by making one of her 13 saves in her first collegiate start Thursday night. Shown in photo from left are Eastern defenders Erika Malito (background), Rachel Cocola and Lyndsey Zavisza (22).(Stephen Goomrigian photo).

 For Eastern (2-9), which dropped its seventh straight after splitting its first four matches, freshman goalie Marissa Poplawski (Wallingford) turned back 13 shots in her first collegiate start (second appearance) and  junior forward Elise Zarcaro (Enfield) totaled her first collegiate point in her 45h career game.

Senior forward Dana McLaughlin (West Hartford) and Zarcaro scored 15 minutes apart in the first half and the Warriors trailed by only one goal before Wesleyan (7-1) took over the match by scoring the final seven goals - all five in the second half - to defeat Eastern for the seventh time in this seven-game series.

Wesleyan junior forward Morgan McCauley scored three consecutive goals - the final one of the first half and the first two of the second - as the Cardinals tied their program record for goals in a match, first set 13years ago.  After Zarcaro's goal pulled Eastern to within 3-2, Wesleyan scored the final two goals of the first half in a span of 32 seconds, and pulled away with three more in a span of less than 11minutes early in the second half.

McLaughlin's third goal of the season 13 minutes into the match followed a penalty corner from junior back Erika Malito (Killingly) and cut Wesleyan's early advantage in half, 2-1. After Wesleyan answered with one of its own three minutes later, Zarcaro's first career goal again cut the Cardinal lead to one, 3-2. Senior forward Ashley Del Vecchio (Fairfield) created Zarcaro's scoring opportunity when she carried the ball down the right sideline before firing a shot toward the cage, where Zarcaro re-directed it past Wesleyan sophomore goalie Tori Redding.

Poplawski followed up a ten-save performance in her collegiate debut  Tuesday at Fitchburg State by making nine saves in the first half against Wesleyan but was overwhelmed by a Cardinal offense which took 29 shots and collected 26 penalty corners.

Eastern hosts Framingham State University in a Little East Conference match Saturday at 4 p.m.


Women's Soccer: The Beat Goes On

Warriors set program record with eighth consecutive regular-season win


WARRIORlogo2009_72dpi.jpgMANSFIELD, Conn. - Sophomore forward Taylor Buchanan (Ellington) scored her team-leading ninth goal of the season with 16 minutes left in the first half to help the Eastern Connecticut State University women's soccer team extend its program record unbeaten streak to 11 with a 2-0 non-conference victory over Wesleyan University Wednesday night at the Mansfield Outdoor Complex

Above Defenders Lauren Hickey (7) and Rachel Cutler (14) double team a Wesleyan player Wednesday night. (Stephen Goomrigian photo)

Ranked fifth in New England, Eastern (10-0-1) extended its program record for consecutive unbeaten games, broke the program record for consecutive regular-season wins and tied the season record for consecutive victories with its eighth straight triumph.Among teams ranked in this week's New England Top Ten, only Eastern and Trinity College are unbeaten. They meet in two weeks at Hartford.

Buchanan scored a goal for the sixth time in the last seven matches when she completed a give-and-go with sophomore forward Daniela Marchitto (Orange). by converting a shot from the left side of the box  inside the near post.

Eastern's one-goal margin remained the difference in the match until sophomore midfielder Nicole Leonard (Rutherford, NJ) scored her third goal of the season ten minutes into the second half to make it 2-0. Sophomore forward Chelsea Downer (Colchester) began the scoring play by sending a corner kick from the right side all the way through the box. Freshman back Megan Godwin (Manchester) ran the ball down and sent a crossing pass back across the box to Leonard near the far post, who beat Wesleyan (1-3-3) freshman keeper Grace Bomann from in close. Boman was making her first career start and only the second appearance of her career.

Eastern junior keeper Theresa Pagnozzi (Waterford) made four saves to post her third shutout (second straight) and is now unbeaten in eight decisions this season, which ties the program season record for consecutive wins by a keeper. In winning her ninth career decision without a loss, Pagnozzi lowered her goals-against average to 0.46 and raised her save percentage to .842.

The Warriors recorded their fifth shutout of the season and have given up more than one goal in match only once all season while allowing only seven goals in 11 matches  for  a 0.62 goals-against average. The starting defense of seniors Lauren Hickey (Southwick, MA) and Amber Petrizzo (Plainville), sophomore Rachel Cutler (Guilford) and Godwin did not come off the field in the match. 

The Warriors, who scored on their only shot on net in the first half,  took the first seven shots of the second half and finished with a 12-8 advantage in that department in the game..

Eastern returns to Little East Conference action Saturday when it visits the University of Southern Maine at 1 p.m.


W-Volleyball: Warriors Denied LEC Win

Western breaks 1-1 tie by winning final two sets on way to 3-1 victory


joy_slide_4025.jpgWILLIMANTIC, Conn. --  Coming off three well-played matches at home over the weekend - two of them wins --  the Eastern Connecticut State University women's volleyball team attacked at just .065 in losing a 3-1 Little East Conference decision to Western Connecticut State University Tuesday night at Francis E. Geissler Gymnasium.

Above: Rachel Joy

Western (18-5, 2-1 little east)) outscored Eastern  (8-10, 0-3 little east) 8-1 early in the important third set on the way to a 25-21 that gave the Colonials their third win over the Warriors in the last three meetings between the programs.  Leading 2-games-to-1, Western wrapped up the victory by scoring the final five points of the fourth set.

Junior Kristianna Ibsen (Shelton) led Eastern with ten kills, three aces and three  blocks, while 6-foot-2 inch  sophomore Katie Wilson (Pittsburg, CA) added eight kills, and two aces, junior libero Taylor Abelli (Cheshire) 19 digs, and senior Rachel Joy (Huntington Station, NY) 16 digs and 21 reception attempts with only one  error (.952). Junior Samantha Slonski (Griswold) recorded 29 assists.

Junior libero Kelley Collins paced Western with 25 digs, senior Natalie Crosby adding 17 digs and ten kills, senior setter Samantha Hathaway 45 assists, sophomore Paxton Thornton 18 kills and three  blocks, and freshman Melanie Lombardi four  blocks.

Western has won seven of its last nine and improves to 7-1 on its opponent's home court this year. Playing the fourth of seven straight home matches, Eastern is 6-3 at Geissler Gym this season. This past weekend, the Warriors swept Wheaton College (MA) downed regionally-ranked Emerson College in four sets, and battled No. 8 regionally-ranked U.S. Coast Guard Academy in a five-set loss

Western was ranked No. 2in the LEC pre-season poll, Eastern No. 6 after the Colonials eliminated the Warriors in the opening round of last year's LEC tournament.

Eastern hosts the30th Annual Crabtree Classic Friday and Saturday, facing University of New England Friday at 8 p.m.
                                          Western Conn. 3, Eastern Conn. 1

Western Conn. (18-5, 2-1 little east)  25 22 25 25  
Eastern Conn. (8-10, 0-3 little east)  14 25 21 14


M-Soccer: Warriors Can't Match Hawks

Appel provides bright spot in match pitting regionally-ranked teams

appel_SLIDE_5306.jpgMANSFIELD, Conn. - In a battle of regionally-ranked teams, the Montclair State University SoccerAnnivLogo.jpgmen's soccer team scored twice on corner kicks in the second half to post a 2-0 non-conference victory over Eastern Connecticut StateUniversity Tuesday night at the Mansfield Outdoor Complex.

At left: Carl Appel

Ranked No. 5 in the NSCAA New England region, Eastern (7-3-1) managed only three shots while Montclair State (8-1-2) collected 18 shots  in defeating the Warriors for the fifth time in five meetings in the series. Montclair, which lost only one match a year ago in the regular season, is ranked No. 6 in the South Atlantic region.

Both of the Red Hawks' goals came on corner kicks in the second half. Featuring eight seniors, Montclair broke from a scoreless first period when sophomore back William O'Connor scored his first goal of the season on  senior forward Larry Geraghty's corner kick 6:30 into the second half. Team scoring leader Dan Mendoza, a freshman midfielder, made it 2-0 when he one-timed  senior midfielder Chris Tatro's corner kick inside the right post with just under ten minutes left.


Eastern junior keeper Carl Appel (West Windsor, NJ) submitted a number of standout saves and came off his line to snare dangerous crossing passes to keep the match close. Two of his six saves came in a span of four minutes early in the match when he first dove to smother a one-timer by Geraghty, then corralled a shot by Mendoza off a feed from junior midfielder Kevin Zalewski. With Eastern down 1-0, Appel made his most spectacular save of the evening when he robbed Mendoza with a dive to his left midway through the second half.
Less than two minutes before Mendoza finally broke through to make it 2-0, Appel foiled a pretty give-and-go between Menoza and Tatro by leaving his feet to deny Tatro.

Above: Junior back Aaron Smiles is chased by a Montclair State player Tuesdsy night. (Stephen Goomrigiann photo)

With junior forward Matt Furman (Montville) and senior midfielder Sean Capezzone (Colchester) still sidelined with injuries, six of ten field players were forced to play all 90 minutes, including all four defenders: Aaron Smiles (Bedford, MA), Jordan Munsell (Waterford), Bradley Fletcher (Middletown) and Mike Radlbeck (Westbrook). Only freshman midfielder Luke Capezzone (Colchester) saw substantial time off the bench, logging 45 minutes.

Montclair had 18 shots, putting eight of them on net, and held an 8-3 advantage in corner kicks.

Montclair sophomore keeper Anthony Rogic  needed only one save to record his sixth shutout and lower his goals-against average to 0.34.

Eastern hosts the University of Southern Maine in a 1 p.m. Little East Conference match Saturday, then hosts Kean University Sunday at 6 p.m. in a non-conference match.



Soccer: Three are Cited by Little East

Buchanan on offense, Fletcher on defense, and Radlbeck as rookie

Buchanan (top), Fletcher, and Radlbeck


NORTH DARTMOUTH, Mass. - Three members of the Eastern Connecticut State University men's and women's soccer programs have earned weekly Little East Conference honors for the first time in their careers, for the week ending Oct. 3.

buchanan head 72_2048.jpgOn the men's side, sophomore back Bradley Fletcher (Middletown) was named Defensive Player-of-the-Week and freshman back Mike Radlbeck (Westbrook) was selected Rookie-of-the-Week. For the women, sophomore midfielder Taylor Buchanan (Ellington) was tabbed Offensive Player-of-the-Week,


fletcher shirt 72_1998.jpgBuchanan scored five goals in two wins, including all three of the game's goals Saturday in a 3-0 LEC win at Little East Conference opponent UMass Boston, making Eastern the only unbeaten team in the conference and extending its best start and unbeaten streak to ten matches (9-0-1). In a 6-1 mid-week home win over Salem State University, Buchanan came off the bench to net two goals. Buchana was additionally honored as the ECAC New England Division III Offensive Player-of-the-Week, announced Tuesday..

radlbeck shirt 72_2038.jpgIt marked the 19th time in the program's 25-year history that a player has scored at least three goals in a match but first time that the feat of three or more goals represented all of the goals in the match or all of Eastern's goals. Buchanan now has at least one goal in five of her last six games after going scoreless in her first four contests of the season. She leads the team in goals (8) and points (16) this year. Eastern entered last week ranked No. 5 in New England.

Fletcher continued to play every minute of every match this year, helping Eastern to two wins, when it allowed only one total goal to improve its overall record to 7-2-1. The Warriors defeated Salem State, 2-0, on the road, and Little East Conference opponent UMass Boston, 2-1, at home. Opponents managed to put only three shots on Eastern keepers Carl Appel (West Windsor, NJ) and Rick Emery (Brewster, NY) during the week. In ten matches, opponents have scored only eight goals this season.

Radlbeck scored his first career goal with five minutes left to break a tie and give Eastern the  win over visiting UMass Boston in a game where the Warriors erased a one-goal deficit over the final 17 minutes. Radlbeck totalled three of the sixth shots that Eastern was able to put on net in the match. He played all but seven minutes in a 2-0 week which included the win over Salem State. The only freshman starter on that year's team, Radlbeck averages just under 80 minutes per game this year for Eastern, which entered the week ranked sixth in New England.

In five weekly LEC ratings, the Eastern men have had four different selections. In addition to Fletcher and Radlbeck, Appel has been named Goalie-of-the-Week twice, and junior back Matt Esposito (East Haven) Defensive Player-of-the-Week once. The women's team has featured five different selections. Senior back Amber Petrizzo (Plainville) and junior back Laura Violette (Wallingford) were named Defensive Player-of-the-Week once each and freshman forward Nicole Leonard (Rutherfield, NJ) Rookie-of-the-Week once.

In non-conference matches, the men host Montclair State University Tuesday at 7 p.m. and the women host Wesleyan University Wednesday at 6 p.m.


M-Lacrosse: Rivals Team for Cause

                                            Sunday, October 3, 2010

group_72dpi_4018.jpgThe Eastern Connecticut State University men's lacrosse program hosted the inaugural "Rivals Against Autism" Sunday at the Mansfield Outdoor Complex. Alumni teams from Eastern and traditional rivals Keene State, Springfield College and Western New England College competed in a series of exhibition kyle_72_4071.jpggames to benefit the Creative Living Community of Connecticut. Twenty-five Eastern men's lacrosse alumni participated in the event, among them event founder and director Kyle Savage (24), shown in photo at left during the Eastern alumni's exhibition Sunday against a team of Keene State and Springfield alumni. Participating alumni from all four New England Division III institutions donated $20 each, with fans also donating $5. All proceeds went to the Creative Living Community of Connecticut.


Women's Volleyball: Eastern Emerging

In home split, Warriors show their worth against two ranked teams


WILLIMANTIC, Conn. --  While the Eastern Connecticut State University women's volleyball WARRIORlogo2009_72dpi.jpgteam had a five-match home winning streak ended Saturday afternoon, it did earn a large measure of respect from two of New England's top-ranked teams.

Above: Danielle Bourne

Coming off last year's 12-win season, Eastern (8-9) reversed the result of a year ago with Emerson College (13-5), then extended the U.S. Coast Guard Academy (15-4) to the full five sets before finally losing by four points in the decisive game.

Beaten in four games last year by Emerson, Eastern won three straight sets after an opening loss on the way to a 14-25, 25-23, 25-17, 26-24 decision this time. None of the five sets against Coast Guard were decided by more than four points, with the Bears surviving by 21-25, 25-23, 26-24, 21-25, 15-11.

Ranked 13th in New England, Emerson was coming off last year's 30-win season, Great Northeast Athletic Conference championship and NCAA berth, while eighth-ranked Coast Guard was 28 matches last year en route to the ECAC Division III championship.

In the final set against Emerson, Eastern led 23-17 before Emerson rallied to tie the match at 24-all, but junior Gianna Trombino (East Moriches, NY) won it with an ace.  In the important third set that gave the Warriors a 2-1 edge, junior Samantha Slonski (Griswold) and sophomore Danielle Bourne (Branford) combined for seven kills, and Slonski and junior Britt Carrier (Southington) each had seven digs.

Eastern tied the match against Coast Guard with the win in the fourth set, snapping a 17-all tie to take the lead for good. In the deciding set, the Bears scored three points in a row to break the fourth and final tie and move out to an 8-5 lead.  In that fourth set, Slonski and junior Kristianna Ibsen (Shelton) combined for seven kills, Ibsen, Carrier and junior libero Taylor Abelli (Cheshire) combined for 14 digs.

On the afternoon, Ibsen attacked at a team-high .314 with a team-high 20 kills  and also 22 digs; Slonski had 18 kills, 68 assists, 31 digs and five blocks; Abelli a team-high 54 digs; Carrier 41 digs, Trombino 13 kills and and four service aces, Wilson 16 kills, 22 serves without an error, and five blocks and Miller 21 digs.

Eastern hosts Western Connecticut State University in a Little East Conference match Tuesday at 6 p.m.

                             Eastern Conn. 3, Emerson College 1

Emerson (13-4)              25 23 17 24
Eastern Conn. (8-8)       14 25 25 26

Statistical Leaders

Eastern Conn.
Kristianna Ibsen 9 kills,  .250 attack pct., 10 digs

Taylor Abelli 19 digs

Daniella Bourne 9 kills, .250 attack pct.
Samantha Slonski 8 kills, .200 attack pct., 18 digs, 30 assists
Erynn Miller 29 rec. attempts., 3 errors, 15 digs
Britt Carrier 16 digs

Megan Kaplon 20 digs
Sara Rutan 22 digs
Jamie Morgan 17 rec. attempts, 0 errors
Kelsey Scanlon 18 rec. attempts, 1 error, 10 kills
Katie Bailey and Jessica Drumright 40 combined assists
Maddie Breeland 8 kills, .286 attack pct.

                                   U.S.  Coast Guard 3, Eastern Conn. 2

Coast Guard (15-4)           21 25 26 21 15
Eastern Conn. (8-9)          25 23 24 25  11

Statistical Leaders

Coast Guard
Jessica Anderson 39 digs
Catherine Walker 34 digs, 8 kills
Lauren Bloch 17 kills
Karen Matic  28 digs, 48 assists
Kelsey DePorto  4 blocks, 14 kills

Eastern Conn.
Kristianna Ibsen 11 kills, .370 attack pct.; 20 serves, 2 errors; 12 digs
Taylor Abelli 21 serves, 2 errors; 26 rec. attempts., 0 errors; 35 digs
Katie Wilson 12 kills, .296 attack pct., 4 blocks
Britt Carrier 25 digs
Samantha Slonski 10 kills, 4 blocks, 41 assists
Gianna Trombino 9 kills, .273 attack pct., 3 service aces

             U.S. Coast Guard Academy 3, Emerson College 1

Emerson (13-5)  25 34 22 23
Coast Guard (14-4)  23 36 25 25

In the pivotal second set, there were 22 ties before Coast Guard broke the final one at 34-all. In the last set, Coast Guard scored the first five points but Emerson later scored three points in a row to tie it at 18-all. The Bears broke from the final tie,21-all to take the lead for good.

Statistical Leaders

Coast Guard
Lauren Bloch 24 digs, 14 kills
Sam Marmolejo 22 digs
Karen Matic 22 digs, 50 assists
Nicole Johnson 15 kills
Kelsey DePorto 5 blocks, 15 kills
Rachel Cuthrell 5 blocks

Lauren Zaniboni 18 digs, 30 rec. attempts., 2 errors; 14 kills.239 attack pct.
Sara Rutan 17 digs
Katie Bailey and Jessica Drumright 46 combined assists
Maddie Breeland  11 kills .216 attack pct.



W-Soccer: Buchanan Central to Win

She scores all three of game's goals in LEC win over UMass Boston

buchananUMB72dpi 843.jpgBOSTON, Mass. -- Sophomore midfielder LEC25.jpgTaylor Buchanan (Ellington) scored all three of the game's goals to help the Eastern Connecticut State University women's soccer team become the only unbeaten squad in the Little East Conference Saturday afternoon against the University of Massachusetts Boston at the Clark Athletic Center.

Above: Taylor Buchanan (5) is congratulated following the first of her three goals. (Liz Cutler photo)

The win enhances Eastern's (9-0-1, 3-0-0 little east) best start in the program's 25-year history and gives it  a conference-best nine points. UMass (6-2-3, 2-1-0) drops into a four-way tie for second place with Keene State, Western Connecticut and the University of Southern Maine, all with identical records and six points. Eastern has already beaten Keene State (last year's regular-season LEC champ) and Western Connecticut.

While the feat of scoring at least three goals in a match had been done 18 times previously, Buchanan becomes the first Eastern player whose hat trick represented either all of the goals in the match or all of Eastern's goals. It's the fifth time in six years that a player has scored three goals in a match, most recently last year by Sarah Swann in a 6-1 home victory over Southern Maine.

Junior keeper Theresa Pagnozzi (Waterford) won her seventh decision without a loss this year (9-0 lifetime), making five saves over 90 minutes for Eastern, ranked No. 5 in New England. The program record for consecutive wins in a season is eight by Allison Sumecki (2005), who also owns the program season record for consecutive games unbeaten (9) and career records for consecutive wins (11) and consecutive games unbeaten (15).

Buchanan, who has at least one goal in five of her last six games after going scoreless in the first four contests, gave Eastern a 1-0 halftime lead when she scored off an indirect kick midway through the first half on an assist from sophomore forward Daniela Marchitto (Orange). Buchanan made it 2-0 nine minutes into the second half with an unassisted goal on a 30-yard blast to the far post and added her team-leading eighth goal ten minutes later when she carried alone and beat keeper Katie Coscia.

With her second straight multiple-goal game, Buchanan now has 30 points (13 goals) in 29 career games.

Following its 14 shutout of UMass, Eastern remains unbeaten (15-0-1) in 16 matches with UMass in this series. Last year, the Beacons tied the Warriors in a scoreless contest but Eastern eliminated the Beacons, 4-0, in the conference tournament.

Eastern hosts Wesleyan University Wednesday at 6 p.m. in a non-conference match.

Men's Soccer: Late Escape

In Little East, Warriors win for first time after trailing in second half

radlbeck shirt 72_2038.jpgMANSFIELD, Conn. - Sophomore midfielder Jon DeCasanova SoccerAnnivLogo.jpg(Glastonbury) and freshman back Mike Radlbeck (Westbrook) scored 12 minutes apart as the Eastern Connecticut State University men's soccer team  won for the first time this year after trailing in the second half in a 2-1 Little East Conference victory over the University of Massachusetts Boston Saturday afternoon at the Mansfield Outdoor Complex.

Above: Mike Radlbeck
The win was the first at home this year for Eastern (7-2-1, 2-1-0 little east) after a loss and tie and is the Warriors' 11th straight over UMass Boston (1-8-0, 0-3-0 little east) dating back to 2000.  Eastern is ranked No. 6 in New England.

Trailing 1-0, Eastern tied the match with 17 minutes left on DeCasanova's fourth goal of the season. On a re-start near midfield, sophomore back Jordan Munsell (Waterford) sent the ball back to junior back Aaron Smiles (Bedford, MA), who chipped the ball from a spot ten yards behind midfield to a wide-open DeCasanova, who caught up to the serve on the third bounce and beat sophomore keeper Brycen Dowd with a flip shot that looped over the charging Dowd's head and bounced into the goal.

With just over five minutes left minutes left, Radlbeck one-timed a served ball from sophomore back Ryan McCormack (Shelton) following Smiles' re-start inside the right post, beyond the dive of Dowd for the game-winner. The goal was the first in the career of Radlbeck, whose two previous shots in the game were saved by Dowd.

Eastern senior keeper Rick Emery (Brewster, NY) won his first career decision in his first appearance this year (ninth of his career). Emery played the second half in relief of junior starter Carl Appel (West Windsor, NJ).

UMass had lost seven straight entering play but played the Warriors even in the first half, then took a 1-0 lead midway through the second half. Senior back Alex Cavallero  began the scoring play with a free kick and sophomore midfielder Reyn Johnson later won the ball near midfield and sent a pass to sophomore midfielder Victor Costa  in the middle of the field. Costa immediately found freshman forward Stefanos Galouzis streaking down the right flank. Galouzis caught up to the bouncing pass behind the Eastern defense and slipped a ground ball under Emery from close range.

Junior back Aaron Smiles (Bedford, MA) assisted on both Eastern goals, giving last year's LEC assist leader a team-leading five this year. McCormack's assist was the first of his career, as was backup Munsell's , which came on DeCasanova's tying goal. Normally the team's backup keeper, Munsell played all 90 minutes for the second straight start on defense.

The Warriors nearly scored an early goal four minutes into action when Radlbeck and freshman midfielder Zach Kice (Denver, CO) worked to send a cross to freshman forward Tom Vear (Monson, MA), whose header travelled above the cross bar. With ten minutes left in the first half of a scoreless game, freshman forward Mitch Power (Douglas, MA)  was also too strong with a one-timed volleyball that also cleared the cross bar. Although he was credited with only four saves, the aggressive play of Dowd in goal all afternoon also foiled an Eastern bid with 2:20 left in the first half, as the keeper raced off his line to deny freshman forward Romaro Johnson's (Bridgeport) breakaway attept. On the Warriors' final chance to take a first-half lead, freshman midfielder Nathan Mozian (Southington) sent a rebound high and wide in the final minute.

Sophomore forward Cory Tobler (Portland) managed only one shot but spent the afternoon creating a number of scoring changes for himself and his teammates. Five minutes into the second half, Tobler's throw-in landed at the foot of junior midfielder Matt Esposito (East Haven), but Esposito's volley from in close sailed over the crossbar.

Five minutes into the second half, UMass lost the services of talented sophomore back Verly Jean , who banged his head on the turf while slide-tackling an Eastern player in the box. Jean did not return.

Eastern  hosts Montclair State University Tuesday at 7 p.m.

Women's Volleyball: Still Hot at Home

Warriors are in control with victory over Wheaton, 25-18, 25-19, 25-21

Post-Game Interview: Samantha Slonski

ibsenraw_WEB3522.jpgWILLIMANTIC, Conn. - The Eastern Connecticut StateWARRIORlogo2009_72dpi.jpg University women's volleyball team attacked at a season-high .255 and collected at least ten service aces for the fourth straight match in a three-set sweep of Wheaton College (MA) Friday night at Francis E. Geissler Gymnasium. Scorers were 25-18, 25-19, 25-21.

At left: Kristianna Ibsen

A winner of five straight home matches after a season-opening setback at Geissler Gym, Eastern (7-8) held the upper hand throughout the entire match, trailing on only a couple of occasions and using substantial scoring runs in the second and third sets to pull away.

Wheaton (8-10) has now lost four straight overall this year and falls to Eastern for the fifth time in the last six meetings between the programs. The Warriors blew a 2-0 lead a year ago against the Lyons at Norton, Mass., eventually dropping the decisive fifth set, 16-14. This year, Eastern wrapped up the match with a four-point victory in the third set. In that final set, Eastern scored eight straight points to wipe out an early one-point deficit to move out to a 22-15 lead. Junior right-side hitter Kristianna Ibsen (Shelton) and freshman outside hitter  Erynn Miller (Stratford) both had three kills and Miller and sophomore middle hitter Katie Wilson (Pittsburg, CA) combined for five blocks.

Eastern scored 12  points on service aces - junior libero Taylor Abelli (Cheshire), junior setter Samantha Slonski (Griswold) and Ibsen combing for ten -- and attacked at a season-high .255. With a season-tying 13 kills, Ibsen recorded at least ten kills for the ninth time in the last ten matches, attacking at a season-high .500. Wilson added six kills and also attacked at .500 - her second-best hitting percentage of the season.

En route to its fourth sweep this year, Eastern led 5-1 in the first set and later scored the final five points  to extend a two-point lead. Ibsen was 4-for-7 on kills without an error in the set and  Samantha Slonski had three service aces.

In the second set, Eastern scored eighth straight points to move out to a 9-3 lead and never trailed the rest of the way. Ibsen was 5-for-9 on kills with one error and Abelli had two service aces

In the match, team blocking leader Wilson contributed four. Junior Britt Carrier (Southington) led the Warriors with nine digs and handled 13 serves with just one error; Abelli had eight digs, Slonski 29 set assists, and freshman outside hitter Erynn Miller (Stratford) 13 service receptions with just one error and two blocks.

Saturday, Eastern hosts Emerson College at 11 a.m. and the U.S. Coast Guard Academy at 3 p.m. Emerson is ranked No. 13 in New England, Coast Guard No. 8.

Eastern Conn. 3, Wheaton, MA 0

Wheaton (8-10)               18        19      21
Eastern Conn. (7-8)         25        25      25