Penn College Women's Soccer Program Continues to Build

Published 09.14.2007


During four of its past six seasons, women's soccer teams at Pennsylvania College of Technology have had winning campaigns and captured three championships.

In fact, coach Kim Antanitis' first team last fall lost only once in 10 matches and won the Eastern Pennsylvania Collegiate Conference crown. But as good as that was, she's looking for more in building the program.

"I came in with expectations of having a winning season, changing the morale of the team and getting to every game with the numbers that we needed to have (to avoid forfeiting). We definitely achieved our goals and it was a fantastic season," Antanitis said.

But that was then, and a new season brings new challenges.

"We're looking to make things more competitive. "¦ It is still a work in progress. We did add a tournament this year and will be playing a couple of new teams. Unfortunately, we don't know if that's going to make it more competitive, but we're hoping that it is," the coach said. "It's going to take us a while to build it to a competitive level, to find those teams that we can compete with, but are a challenge."

In their opener last Friday, the Lady Wildcats dropped a 2-1 double-overtime decision to Penn State Harrisburg, which also handed Penn College its lone loss last season. But Antanitis saw a lot of good things during the match despite the outcome.

"As a team, the girls played absolutely fantastic. We really dominated the game. Unfortunately, we just weren't able to finish. They scored with two breakaways and it's just too bad that that's how the game ended. If we continue to play at that level for the rest of the season, it will be a great season," Antanitis said.

The Wildcats return to the field Saturday at Manor College and will have seven returnees among their 11 starters.

In goal is Carrie Meyer, a sophomore from Ashland , Wisc., who has no experience minding the net, but someone on whom Antanitis said she can count.

"Last year, she was our overall MVP, and I assigned her to that role (goalie) because we have nobody on the team who is a keeper. She accepted that role and is doing a fantastic job. We're looking for a very strong standing from her in the goal," the coach said. "She's a great leader."

Other returnees are Blair Smith (sophomore/South Williamsport) at left wing, Sarah Coulbourn (sophomore/Elysburg) at right wing, Alyssa Giedroc (junior/Howard) and Ashley Janoka (sophomore/Shamokin) both at striker, Justine Wareham (junior/Hollidaysburg) in the midfield and Ashley Olvera (sophomore/Marysville) at sweeper. Meyer and Wareham are team co-captains.

Also starting are stopper Dana Richardson (freshman/Danville), midfielder Bridget Metzger (freshman/Montoursville) and strikers Kim Daley (freshman/Springfield) and Heather Ball (freshman/Mansfield).

Rounding out the squad are defenders Tiffany Madara (sophomore/Paxinos), a returnee; Tiffany Boettcher (freshman/Tamaqua) and Ashley Hassinger (freshman/McClure).

Addressing expectations for her team's offense, Antanitis said, "I certainly can't expect more than last year. We did a fantastic job scoring last year. We just totally dominated most of our games and I'll be looking for the same thing this year scoring at every opportunity that we can."

"Defensively, we're under new leadership with Olvera as our sweeper and Meyer in the goal. They're both vocal players and we're looking for leadership and I know with them back there talking we will definitely be a defense that people will have to work to score against," Antanitis said.

"We're looking forward to a good season," she added.

(Complete rosters and season schedules are available on the college's Athletics Web site. )