After a summer of intense training and preparation, the women’s soccer team kicks off its 2004 season Sunday when it travels to Long Island to take on Stony Brook for an 11 a.m. contest. The Seawolves (1-0) are a familiar opponent for the Red (0-0) — Cornell will be facing Stony Brook in its season opener for the third straight year.
“[Stony Brook is] a very strong, unified team. They would also like to beat an Ivy League school,” said head coach Berhane Andeberhan. “They are a little awkward for us to play — it’s the kind of team where we always pray for a good referee, because the game tends to deteriorate. But this is good training for us.”
The Red looks to start off the season strong after dropping its last five games last season. Cornell finished the 2003 campaign with a 7-7-2 (1-5-1 Ivy) record.
The team returns four starters from last year in seniors Katie Thomas and Natalie Dew and juniors Kara Ishikawa and Shannon Fraser, in addition to several key reserves. The team also welcomes ten new freshmen, who will add depth throughout the lineup. The recruiting class also allows the team to be more flexible in its playing formations and tactics this season. Stony Brook opened its season last Friday with a 1-0 win over Iona. The Seawolves are coming off a 7-11-1 record a year ago, just failing to make the conference playoffs. The team was recently picked to finish sixth in the America East preseason coaches poll, and it returns second team all-conference selection Danielle Lewis and three-year starting goalie Cindy Bennett.
“We need to learn to be composed regardless of what’s happening. I think our finest moment last year was against Harvard. Not only did we play well against an excellent team — and withstood a lot of simply soccer pressure — but we also withstood a lot of physical pressure, a lot of fouling,” Andeberhan said. “If you can withstand it, all you have to do is neutralize it. You don’t have to beat them in the physical game, just not allow it to affect you and continue to play the game. So this is a good test for us, I think, in that respect.”
Archived article by Jonathan Auerbach
Sun Staff Writer