Soccer Set To Kick-Off 2011

CHESTNUT HILL, MA – Pine Manor Soccer kicks-off the 2011 regular season tomorrow when it hosts Southern Vermont at 4:00 p.m. Hedley Field. The contest will be the first on the soccer sidelines for Pine Manor Head Coach Erica Adams, who took over both the soccer and lacrosse programs in the last year.

2010 was a frustrating year for the Gators, as PMC’s only victory came on October 25, 2010 when it defeated the same Southern Vermont team it will host tomorrow by a score of 2-0. However, for Adams and the Gators, 2010 is now in the past and the first-year head coach believes that her returning upperclassmen can start building success in 2011.

“We’re all striving to move forward as a team,” said Adams of her returning players. “We want to take positive strides for our program.”

For Pine Manor success will start in the defensive end. Sophomore goalkeeper Natasha Kopystynsky (Johnsburg, IL/Johnsburg) returns as the team’s starter in net and Adams will be looking for her to lead the defense, through both her own play and her command of the Gator defense as a whole.

“She has been working a lot on giving direction, being vocal on the field, and we will be looking for her to be the cornerstone of our defense.”

In the midfield, a pair of talented seniors will contribute both to the team defensive effort and the Gators offense attack. Christina Santos (Pawtucket, RI/St. Raphael Academy) and Beth Deegan (Philadelphia, PA/Little Flower Catholic), Pine Manor’s leading returning scorer from 2010, will each play leading roles in their final seasons in Chestnut Hill.

“Santos is a great communicator on the field,” said Adams of the 2009 GNAC All-Conference selection. “She has a great presence on the field, and the ability to direct the midfield.”

While Deegan, perhaps the Gators biggest offensive threat, will be asked to lead the Gator attack, moving into scoring positions out of the midfield to find the back of the net. “We need her to provide an offensive spark for us,” said Adams of the senior from Philadelphia, PA.

In addition to Kopystynsky and the two senior midfielders, the Gators will return five other players from last season’s squad including three more sophomores. Amanda Powell (Lumberton, NJ/Rancocas), Tesla Castillo (Boston, MA/Madison Park) and Christina Warnke (Livermore, CA/Livermore) round out a talented sophomore class that will collectively be looking to make big contributions in 2011.

Senior Glenn Grushko (Chester, NY/Solomon Schechter of Westchester) and Margaret Roberts (Allentown, PA/Louis E. Dieruff) will also bring a wealth of knowledge and talent to help guide the five member freshmen class through the 2011 season and to put the program back on the road to success.

“We’ve added some depth with this year’s freshmen class,” said Adams. “We are all eager to start the season. We want to turn a new leaf, and that starts this fall.”

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