The Griffin (Chestnut Hill College) – November 2012
By Marilee Gallagher ’13
It was a fall season of ups and downs for the Chestnut Hill College athletics program but when all was said and done, two teams managed to reach the postseason as a result of their regular season success.
The women’s soccer team played to an 8-10 overall record, earning their way to their fourth straight CACC Championship Tournament. With a 7-5 conference record, the team earned the seventh seed and was faced with the daunting task of playing the second seed, Philadelphia University. In one of the best games played all season, the Griffins really came together and put forth and amazing effort. Senior goalkeeper, Jess Veazey, warded off attacks and kept the game scoreless until the 72nd minute. With Philly U up 1-0, Kaelyn Pizarro ’14 executed a perfect pass to midfielder and CACC leading goal scorer, Carly DiGiovanni ’14 to tie up the game. Unfortunately, the Lady Rams scored shortly after to give Philly U the 2-1 victory in the Quarterfinal.
Despite the loss, Veazey expressed the feelings of her team by admitting, “It was amazing to make the playoffs this year.” She added that everything was coming together at the end of the season and that really propelled the girls forward. “We played well at the end of the season and had the momentum we needed,” she said.
Although the Griffins had an earlier exit than hoped, their season certainly wasn’t a lost effort. DiGiovanni finished as the conference leader in goals and points scored, earning her All-CACC First Team honors. Junior defender Lauren Nolte also earned distinction from the All-CACC Second Team. Finally, Veazey herself capped off a season that saw her lead the conference in saves and save percentage, adding to her CHC records in saves, wins and shutouts.
It was another great season for the women’s tennis team, which under head coach Albert Stroble, reached its second straight postseason appearance with a record of 10-3 in the regular season. With playoffs taking place on CHC’s home courts, the girls enjoyed a home field advantage that helped propel them from a deficit in the semifinal round to come back to win the match by a score of 5-4.
In reaching the conference finals for the first time in program history, the Griffins were up against a tough task in three-time defending champion Concordia University. The team of Kelly Dennis ’14 and Morgan Oechsle ’15 started the Griffins off with a victory in number two doubles but both fell in their singles competition. With Concordia leading 4-1 in singles, Senior Nastia Shcherbakova scored the Griffins’ lone singles point, winning her match 7-5, 6-2.
With the goal being to make the postseason, Stroble was indeed proud of his team. In describing them as a strong group of girls, the coach also said that “when giving 100 percent, they can be tough to beat.” Conordia certainly learned this as the Griffins really gave them their all. Stroble also acknowledged that “commitment and hard work was the focus for what they [the team] were able to do.”
This commitment and hard work was certainly evident all season not only in the runner-up finish of the team, but also in the three athletes that earned conference honors. Shcherbakova was recognized with All-Tournament distinction as well as being named to her third consecutive All-CACC First Team. Dennis also received tournament honors and her and Maria Parapouras ’13 were additionally named to the all-league roster.