Starting the year off with a strong lead and a solid 3-1 win against Gannon, their rival on Saturday, the Mercyhurst women’s soccer team is ready to make this year one to remember.
Gaining a total of seven freshmen and having junior Janine Wong as their captain, the Lakers are ready to take this season to the next level.
“Wong has a great work ethic and is easily one of the best technical players on the team. She has a cool and collected attitude which rubs off on other players and it keeps us grounded and calm in high pressure games. Her best asset though is leading by example. She has a tremendous work ethic, excellent fitness, and great knowledge of the game,” sophomore Ellie McDougall said.
“In my opinion, the team has improved greatly from last year. We defend more as a unit and we have more of attacking presence on offense than we did last year,” she said.
“However, I think our biggest improvement is our depth. In previous years we did not have a deep bench but this year we have a lot of young talent that have created a competitive atmosphere,” McDougall said.
The win against Gannon women’s soccer team marks the first time the Lakers beat their cross-town rival since Oct. 29, 2010.
During the Gannon game, sophomore Lauren Testa scored two goals, while graduate student Maeve Clark scored her first goal as a Laker.
Mercyhurst outshot Gannon 19 to 13, having led shots throughout each half of the game.
“We were really pumped for the game because the history between the schools goes back for years. We knew that Gannon was going to be a tough team but we were confident and trusted our skills. In my opinion, it was our beat team performance of the year. We played together and shut Gannon down offensively,” McDougall said.
She picked up her third win of the season to improve to 3-2-1.
McDougall made a total of four stops and recorded her first collegiate win against a nationally ranked opponent.
“I do believe that we have great leadership on the team from an experienced senior class. They are who the team looks to for direction and motivation. They are a hardworking bunch and are the definition of great teammates,” McDougall said.
The Laker’s next home game is Friday, September 27, against Shippensburg University at 2 p.m.