Amherst Women's Soccer 1996 Preview

Building on the triumphs of the past two seasons, Lady Jeff soccer looks forward to another exciting season. While they lose many players from their Elite Eight squad, the core that remains possesses the playing experience and fresh taste of success to motivate them in 1996.

Though the team loses Regional All-American Cassie Abodeely to graduation, the starting keeper position should be highly contested among Katie Connelly '00, Carolina Patino '99 and Sarah Fabian '98, returning from last year's injury.

Led by Co-Captain Kate Staaf '97, the backfield returns as one of the strongest defenses in New England. Allowing only eight goals in 1995, Amherst boasts Regional All-American Ellie Hickerson '98 among her defenders, along with Laura Kochansky '98, one of the team's leading scorers last season.

The team of Erika Johnson '98 and Regional All-American Shaunette Richards '98 return to run the midfield. Both players had spectacular sophomore campaigns, including seven goals and six assists combined. Co-Captain Ali Segal '97 will provide the senior leadership at halfback for young but talented players. Katie Missett '99, Eliza Meade '99 and Rebecca Epstein '99 round out the midfield.

The front line will be a nemesis to all opposing goalies. Katie Hersey '99 had seven goals and two assists in 1995 as she haunted the box all season. With her speed and determination, the Jeffs anticipate some exciting action by the enemy net.

With the talent that each player possesses, the challenge is always to coordinate that potential into a strong team unit without losing the individuality of each athlete. Head Coach Michelle Morgan will continue to stress the primacy of the team by upping the ante in practice. With that higher level of intensity, the Jeffs hope to dominate all their opponents as Amherst rises to yet another level of soccer. Improving with each season, Lady Jeff soccer has her eyes on not only the Little III title, but perhaps a national title as well.