Women’s Soccer Recap

by Sarah McLaughlin '23
Editor-in-Chief


Friar Sports


Reflecting on the Friars End to the Season

Stephen Foster ’22

Sports Staff

The Providence College Women’s Soccer Team finished their season in heartbreaking fashion this Sunday, Oct. 31, suffering a disappointing 2-1 overtime loss to St. John’s University in the first round of the Big East Tournament. Amber Birchwell ’21 scored the lone goal to force OT for the Friars. Despite outshooting St. John’s 16-3 in the contest, the team let up the game-winning goal to the Red Storm within the first 25 seconds of the extended period. PC Women’s Soccer finishes the season with a 10-6-3 record, and a 5-4-2 record in the Big East competition.

For the 2022 season, the Friars will be hurt by the loss of fifth-years Amber Birchwell ’21, Hannah McNulty ’21, and Jana Braun ’21, as well as graduate student Christina Rodgers ’21.

Birchwell finished second in total points (two points per goal, one point per assist) on the season with 13 points, composed of four goals and a team-leading five assists. She has started in 82 of her 86 games played for women’s soccer over her five years in Friartown.

McNulty finished fifth in total points on the season with eight points, including two goals, and tied for second on the team in assists with four. Similar to Birchwell, McNulty has been an integral part of the Friars lineup for the entirety of her five years at PC. She started 72 of her 89 games in her college career.

Braun was a significant part of PC’s midfield this season, starting 14 of 19 games with 1,111 total minutes. Her returning teammates will miss her skills in advancing the soccer ball down the field and distributing to her teammates.

Rodgers was a defensive anchor for the team this season, playing in a team high 1,808 minutes and starting every game. She did the same in the 2020 season, playing all 1,140 minutes across all 12 games. Rodgers started in 82 of 88 games for the Friars across her five years on the team. Her defensive presence on the back line will be greatly missed next season.

Women's Soccer
Photo Courtesy of PC Athletics

Although the women’s soccer team will be hurt by the loss of their graduating players, there is a silver lining in the performance of several underclassmen who stepped up this season and will continue to improve for the 2022 season.

The Friars were led in points by Meg Hughes ’24, who scored nine goals and tied for second in assists with four. This is her second season in a row leading in scoring, as she led the team in goals and assists in 2021. She looks to continue her pattern of dominating offense for her junior season, as well as stepping into a leadership role.

Continuing on the offensive side, Gillian Kenney ’25 impressed in her freshman debut. She started in 10 of 19 games and recorded the third most points, finishing tied for second in both goals and assists with four in each category. She has much room to grow in the offseason and could become the spark the Friars need in 2022. Kyla Gallagher ’24 also contributed to the bottom line, adding in four goals and two assists for 10 total points, which is good for fourth on the team.

The defensive line relied on the skills of Alexis Rothmann ’23 and Chloe Ortolano ’23 to keep the opposing offense out of the net. They will be seniors next year and likely will be called upon to lead the Friars with their experience. Sophomore midfielder Avery Snead ’24 is also a name to remember for next season as she looks to take a step forward in her responsibilities. In addition, goalkeeper Emma Bodmer ’24 thrived in her second season this year, picking up three Big East weekly awards.

Providence College Women’s Soccer may have ended their season without a Big East Tournament victory in 2021, but they have high hopes for next season with a mix of proven and promising returning players set to fill the minutes vacated by those who close the door on their admirable college soccer careers.

Sports Shorts

by Sarah McLaughlin '23
Editor-in-Chief


Sports Shorts


Sports Shorts

Will Murphy ’23

Sports Staff

Men’s Soccer

In their final home game of the season, the Providence College Men’s Soccer Team tied Villanova University 0-0, on Saturday, Oct. 30. The Friars were able to outshoot the Wildcats 28-7 but were unable to find a way to notch the go-ahead goal. Goalkeeper Lukas Burns ’24 had a clean sheet making two saves, helping the Friars to their fifth shutout of the season. The tie moved the Friar’s record to 9-2-4 on the season. Next up for the Friars is the regular-season finale on Wednesday, Nov. 3, in Omaha, NE against Creighton University.

Women’s Soccer

The Providence College Women’s Soccer Team closed out the regular season strong at home on Thursday, Oct. 28 with a 2-0 win against Seton Hall University on senior night. The Friars pulled ahead at 41’ thanks to Angie Suaza ’23 netting a penalty kick. After taking the lead, the Friars didn’t look back, scoring again at 58’ with a Meg Hughes ’24 goal. The win clinched a Big East Tournament spot for the Friars, for which they traveled to New York to take on St. John’s University on Sunday, Oct. 31.

Field Hockey

The Providence College Field Hockey Team had a successful week beating Quinnipiac University 5-2 Friday, Oct. 29 at home. The Friars got off to a hot start and by the time the first half was over, they led 3-0. In the third and fourth quarter, each team traded goals, but the Friars were always able to keep the Bobcats at arm’s length. Sophia Pompeo ’23 and Olivia Ward ’22 each scored two goals, and the fifth was added by Niamh Gowing ’22. The Friars close the regular season at home on Sunday, Oct. 31, taking on Dartmouth University.

Men’s Hockey

The No. 8-ranked Providence College Men’s Hockey Team had a busy weekend, taking on the unranked University of New Hampshire on back-to-back nights, Friday, Oct. 29, and Saturday, Oct. 30. They dominated Friday’s matchup at home, winning 6-1, but fell in Saturday’s matchup on the road 2-1 in a tightly contested overtime battle. The weekend’s results moved the Friar’s record to 6-3 on the season. Looking ahead, the Friars have an important two-game set with the No.12-ranked University of Massachusetts Amherst Friday, Nov. 5, and Saturday, Nov. 6.

Sports Shorts

by Sarah McLaughlin '23
Editor-in-Chief


Sports Shorts


Sports Shorts

Luke Sweeney ’24

Sports Staff

Men’s Basketball:

The Providence College Men’s Basketball Team started their preseason this week against head coach Ed Cooley’s alma mater, Stonehill College. The team played well as they eased into competition with a Division II school that they have started their season with since the arrival of Cooley as head coach. The Friars beat the Skyhawks 96-71 and were able to see their entire bench play. The team will start their regular season on Tuesday, Nov. 9 against Fairfield University, and then play two days later on Nov. 11 against Sacred Heart University. Both home games help the Friars prepare for their first major test against the University of Wisconsin on Nov. 15.

Men’s Soccer:

The Providence College Men’s Soccer Team won at home on Saturday, Oct. 23, taking down unranked University of Connecticut 2-1. PC took the first lead of the game thanks to a goal from Luis Garcia ‘23, but the Huskies equalized following a goal from Okem Chime. Providence’s Brendan McSorley assisted Kevin Vang for the game winning goal in the 87th minute. The team will take on Villanova University on Saturday, Oct. 30 on Chapey Field.

Women’s Ice Hockey:

The Providence College Women’s Hockey Team has been off to a hot start this season with a 3-1-2 record. The team currently sits at a ranking of No. 11 in the country and looks to move up as the season progresses. Losing to Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute on Saturday put the team back a bit, but they look to rebound on Sunday, Oct. 31 against Boston University at home.

Women’s Soccer:

The Providence College Women’s Soccer Team had a strong week, as they played the University of Connecticut Huskies on Thursday, Oct. 21, and then the University of DePaul Blue Demons on Sunday, Oct. 24. The Friars tied to UConn 1-1 and then beat DePaul 1-0. The win against DePaul came in double overtime after a close game all the way through. Fifth year senior Amber Birchwell scored the game-winning goal off an assist from sophomore Meg Hughes. They will play Seton Hall on Thursday, Oct. 28 at Chapey Field for the team’s senior night.

Women’s Soccer Update

by Sarah McLaughlin '23
Editor-in-Chief


Friar Sports


Friars Picking Up Key Wins

Ben Bilotti ’23

Sports Staff

The Providence College Women’s Soccer team is having a very nice season so far. Since the start of the season, the team has improved their record to 6-3-1. This amounts to a winning percentage of .650. The team has been especially successful at home, winning five of their six games.

The Friars’ most recent win came against the Creighton University Blue Jays. This marked Providence’s first win in Big East Conference play. The Friars won the match with a score of 1-0.

Kyla Gallagher ’23 scored the winning goal in the 94 minute of the match. Goalkeeper Emma Bodmer ’24 earned her third shutout of the season. In the match she had four saves. Creighton’s goalkeeper Keelan Terrell had four saves of her own. However, the one goal against would ultimately decide the match and send the Friars home victorious.

Creighton University is currently 6-5-2 on the season and in preseason play looked to be one of the top teams in the Conference. However, in Conference play this season, the Blue Jays are 0-3-1. The Blue Jays’ lone tie in conference play came against Georgetown University, who is currently sitting on top of the standings with a record of 2-0-2.

Providence College took on #23 Georgetown University on Sunday, Oct. 3, drawing 1-1. They did well to silence Hoya junior Gia Vicari, who entered the game having seven goals coming on 11 shots on goal. The Hoyas also had a talented goalkeeper Allie Auger, who has 34 saves and only seven goals against. Friar forward Gillian Kenney ’25 was able to slide one past Auger in the second half to equalize against the Hoyas, only nine minutes after Georgetown took the lead in the second half. The game would end level and was not a bad result on the road against a talented opponent.

Women's Soccer
Photo Courtesy of PC Athletics

The Friars have one of the top goalkeepers in the Big East in Emma Bodmer. Bodmer was named to the Big East Weekly Honor Roll on Monday, Sept. 27. For the week Bodmer posted a save percentage of .889. Opponents averaged fewer than one goal against the junior, averaging a 0.48 goal against percentage. In one week, she had eight saves and only one goal allowed. While Bodner has three shutouts in the short season, her shutout against Creighton University was her first individual shutout performance.

This season, Bodmer has a save percentage of .793. She has made 46 saves: only allowing 12 goals in 10 games played. While Georgetown goalkeeper, Allie Auger, has allowed fewer goals against, Bodmer has 12 more saves on the season.

Bodmer has been a very big part of the Friars’ success. She is averaging 1.19 goals against. So far, the sophomore has only allowed more than one goal against twice. The only time this occurred was against No. 5-ranked Wisconsin and No. 22-ranked Rutgers. It’s safe to say when the Friars score two or more goals, they achieve a win with Bodmer in net.

Meg Hughes ’24 and Kyla Gallagher ’24 have been another crucial key to Providence’s success. Hughes has six goals and two assists on the season. Her best performance came against Monmouth University on Sept. 5,, where she led the charge with two goals. The Friars won the match 3-1. Gillian Kenney ’25 also scored her first collegiate goal that match. Gallagher has four goals, and one assist on the season so far. The sophomore’s best performance of the season came against Creighton when she scored the game-winning goal late in the game. Gallagher and Hughes are Providence’s leading goal-scorers thus far.

Providence heads to Villanova, PA to take on the Villanova University Wildcats on Thursday, Oct. 7. In conference play this season, Villanova has come up short with a record of 0-3. The Friars will most certainly look to capitalize and gain some ground in the Big East standings.

After their matchup with the Villanova Wildcats, the Friars will take on Marquette at home on Oct. 10. Then they head to Indianapolis to take on the Butler Bulldogs. Both Butler and Marquette currently sit atop the Friars in the standings. Butler is tied for first along with Georgetown and St. John’s, who all have a conference record of 2-0-2. Marquette sits one place ahead of the Friars with a record of 2-1.

These will be two tough matchups for the Friars. However, do not count them out. Although the team is currently 1-1 in conference play, they showed early that they are a competitive team and are never out of a match.

After their two matches against Marquette and Butler, Providence travels to Queens, NY to take on a tough opponent in first place, St. John’s University. St. John’s looks like they are one of the top teams in the Big East. Like Providence, they play extremely well at home with an overall record of 3-0-2.

The top of the Big East is strong with heavily competitive teams. Strength of schedule does not favor the Providence Friars in the middle of their season. Over their next five matches, the Friars will go up against four of the top teams in the conference. However, the Friars have proven they are a strong and capable squad.

Be sure to mark your calendars for Oct. 21 when the Friars will be playing their Pink Out Game against the University of Connecticut.

Sports Shorts

by Sarah McLaughlin '23
Editor-in-Chief


Sports


Sports Shorts

Stephen Foster ’22

Sports Staff

Men’s Soccer

The Providence College Men’s Soccer Team earned a spot in the United Soccer Coaches Poll on Tuesday, Sept. 21, coming in at no. 24 in the weekly Top 25 National Rankings for Men’s Soccer. Since then, the team extended their win streak to four games with a 3-0 win over Brown University on Wednesday, Sept. 22 and a 3-2 win over Xavier University on Saturday, Sept. 25. Davis Smith ‘21 continued to impress against Xavier, scoring on a header and dishing out an assist in the contest. Smith was named the Big East Offensive Player of the Week for the second time this season on Monday, Sept. 20. Men’s Soccer looks to continue their winning streak this Saturday, Oct. 2 as they travel to Marquette University.

Women’s Soccer

The Providence College Women’s Soccer Team brought their record to 6-3-1 this week, splitting the games with one win and one loss. The team forced overtime in both games this week, ultimately losing 1-0 against Xavier University on Thursday, Sept.23 and shutting out Creighton University 1-0 on Sunday, Sept. 26. Emma Bodner ‘24 won the Big East Goalkeeper of the Week on Monday, Sept. 20, putting up eight saves against Brown University on Thursday, Sept.16. Bodner continued her strong play from the net with eight more saves this past week. Women’s Soccer will be traveling to No. 25 ranked Georgetown University on Sunday, Oct. 3 to take on the Hoyas.

Volleyball

The Providence College Women’s Volleyball Team faced two tough conference matchups this past week, losing 3-2 to Xavier University on Friday, Sept. 24 and 3 – 0 to Butler University on Saturday, Sept. 25. The team registered 43 kills on 133 total attacks, 65 digs, and 39 assists in the game against Butler. Their record now sits at 12-3 on the year. Women’s Volleyball looks to rebound with two more Big East Conference matchups this upcoming week. They face Seton Hall University on Friday, Oct. 1 and St. John’s University on Saturday, Oct. 2.

Field Hockey

The Providence College Field Hockey Team brought their record to an even 5-5 this past week. Four of their five losses this season have come against teams ranked in the Top-25 national poll. The team lost to No. 20-ranked Monmouth University on Sunday, Sept. 19 and No. 22-ranked University of Massachusetts Amherst on Sunday, Sept. 26, but fought well to pull out a tough conference win against Georgetown University, winning 2-1 on Friday, Sept. 24. This upcoming week, Field Hockey will face off against University of Connecticut on Friday, Oct. 1 and Virginia Commonwealth University on Sunday, Oct. 3.

Sports Shorts

by Sarah McLaughlin '23
Editor-in-Chief


Sports Shorts


Sports Shorts

Will Murphy ’23

Sports Staff

Women’s Soccer

The Providence College Women’s Soccer Team played one game this week, picking up a 2–1 win at home against Brown University on Thursday, Sept. 16. The Friars went down 1–0 in the 17th minute, but were able to battle back and take the win thanks to two clutch second-half goals. Meg Hughes ’24 scored the equalizer in the 62nd minute, and Hannah McNulty ’22 netted the go-ahead goal in the 71st  minute. Looking ahead, the Friars will take on Xavier University on Thursday, Sept. 23. 

Field Hockey

The Providence College Field Hockey Team went on the road to face Villanova University on Friday, Sept. 17. After trading goals in the first quarter, the Friars went into the half-tied 1–1. Each team scored two goals in the third, but Villanova pulled away in the fourth with two more goals for a 5–3 win. Sophia Pompeo ’23 scored two goals and Amanda Collins ’22 scored the third. The loss dropped the Friars to 4­–3 on the year. Looking ahead, the team has a matchup with Monmouth University on Sunday, Sept. 19, and Georgetown University on Friday, Sept. 24. 

Men’s Soccer

The Providence College Men’s Soccer Team traveled to South Orange, N.J. to face No. 19 Seton Hall Pirates on Saturday, Sept. 18. The Friars were trailing 2–1 until the 81st minute when they were able to break through with two unanswered goals in two minutes. Brendan McSorley ’24 scored the first and Paulo Lima ’22 was able to notch the go-ahead goal in the 83rd minute. The win pushed the Friars to 4–1–1 on the year, and 1–0 in Big East play. The Friars next take on Brown University on Wednesday, Sept. 22.

Volleyball

The Providence College Volleyball Team continued their strong play as they traveled to the Bronx for the Fordham Tournament on Saturday, Sept. 18. The Friars started the day with a match against St. Francis College and won in straight sets. In the next match, they faced the host, Fordham University, and after four sets they entered the pivotal fifth set tied 2­–2. In the deciding set, they were able to win 15­–13, taking the victory. The undefeated weekend pushed the Friars to 12–1 on the year.    

Women’s Soccer in Full Force

by Sarah McLaughlin '23
Editor-in-Chief


Friar Sports


Women’s Soccer Preview and Update

Leo Hainline ’22

Sports Co-Editor

 

The Providence College Women’s Soccer team has fared well early in the season despite having played a competitive out-of-conference schedule. Their 4-2-1 record has produced many positives in the early part of the season, many of which they will aim to carry over to Big East play.

The Friars opened their season on the road against in-state rival University of Rhode Island, a game that they would draw 1-1. With PC coming off a serviceable 2020-21 campaign and the Rams only winning in two matches the previous season, the Friars were disappointed not to leave Kingston with a victory.

The team bounced back the next game, however, in their home opener against Sacred Heart University, defeating the Pioneers 4-0. The Friars’ attack looked cohesive and showed glimpses of their potential with great team play while also showcasing a beautiful individual effort by Angie Suaza ’23, who scored an absolute beauty by striking the ball from outside the box with power and movement, giving the Sacred Heart goalkeeper zero chance at a save.

PC struggled in their following match against Rutgers University, a team that is currently ranked No. 12 nationally, losing 5-1. However, Coach Sam Lopes’ squad turned their performances around after their tough trip to New Jersey, following the loss to the Scarlet Knights with three consecutive wins against Stony Brook University, Monmouth University, and Boston University. Among these three games, the Friars bagged 12 goals, expressing their attacking capability.

Meg Hughes
Photo Courtesy by PC Athletics

Meg Hughes ’24 helped lead the scoring charge, scoring three goals during this stretch. She also tops the team in scoring, grabbing five in seven games. Her play was recognized as she received Big East Offensive Player of the Week. Hughes’ impressive form is hardly a surprise after she starred for the Friars as a freshman, earning accolades including an All-Big East Second Team selection and a spot on the All-Big Freshman Team. She was also the only Friar selected to the preseason All-Big East Team.

Friars’ goalkeeper Emma Bodmer ’24 also enjoyed a good run of form, earning a spot on the Big East Weekly Honor Roll. The sophomore stopper has enjoyed some standout games so far this season, highlighted by her performance against URI in the Friars’ opener where she saved a total of nine shots. Both Bodmer and Hughes headline a star-studded sophomore class. Forward Kyla Gallagher ’24, midfielders Avery Snead ’24 and Emily McCalligett ’24, and defender Grace Murphy ’24 have also all made significant contributions the Friars team this season.

On Sunday afternoon, PC traveled to the midwest to square off against the University of Wisconsin. The Badgers are projected to finish in the top half of the Big Ten, and this was anticipated to be a closely contested match. Both teams entered with similar records, with the Friars 4-1-1 and the Badgers 4-2-1. Maria Paveglio ’25, a freshman from Lake Orion, Michigan, opened the scoring as she grabbed her second career goal in a Friars uniform. Despite entering halftime with the lead, the Badgers struck back with two quick goals to reclaim control. The scoring would not end here, as the Friars kept applying pressure and forced a Badger own goal to level the match back up. The game would go into extra time, marking Wisconsin’s fourth consecutive extra time match of the season. Unfortunately, the Badgers would grab the golden goal and send the Friars back to Providence empty-handed.

Looking ahead, the Friars culminate their non-conference schedule on Thursday, Sept. 16 at Chapey Field against city rivals Brown University. PC will be eager to enter Big East play coming off a win, especially with 23rd-ranked Xavier looming on their schedule. The Musketeers look to have been underestimated in the Big East Preseason polls, having been predicted to finish No. 7 in the conference. The team hailing from Ohio boasts a perfect 7-0 record, a winning streak that the Friars will be eyeing to cease when they square off in Providence on Sept. 23.

The Friars were projected to finish fourth in the Big East. Such a finish would see them qualifying for the Big East Tournament, which only features four teams. Defending Big East Champions Georgetown University are projected to top the conference, receiving ten of eleven first place votes. Interestingly, the only other team to receive a first place vote was the Providence Friars.

Butler University and University of Connecticut were the other two schools projected to finish above the Friars in conference play. PC will square off against both of these opponents in mid-to-late October.

Gillian Kenney
Photo Courtesy by PC Athletics

Although the squad is relatively young, the Friars will rely on a few veterans who could be catalysts for the team’s success this season. Fifth-year senior forwards Amber Birchwell and Hannah McNulty are staples of PC’s attack. Both have provided two assists this season, and Birchwell has provided two goals to her name as well. Christina Rogers ’GS is a rock of the Friars’ backline and will be instrumental in stifling the opponent’s attack. She was an All-Big East Second Team selection this past season.

Alexis Rothmann ’23 is another player to keep an eye on. The Friars’ No. 10 received All-Big East First Team accolades last year, making her the fourth woman ever selected in program history, and was also the youngest to ever be recognized on the First Team for the Friars. Her playing in midfield can dictate much of PC’s success this season and she will have the opportunity to follow up her 2020-21 campaign with another outstanding season.

The Friars have produced great performances so far this preseason, perhaps revealing their potential for this season. This roster has the ability to assert itself permanently in the record books if they can translate these positive performances into conference play. 

Sports Shorts

by Sarah McLaughlin '23
Editor-in-Chief


Sports Shorts


Sports Shorts

Leo Hainline ’22

Sports Co-Editor

Volleyball

The Providence College Women’s Volleyball Team continued their outstanding form this past weekend, winning the 16th ​​annual Friar Volleyball Classic. The four-team tournament consisted of the Friars, Fairleigh Dickinson University, Saint Peter’s University, and Binghamton University. PC squared off against Saint Peter’s in their first match, defeating the Peacocks in straight sets. Providence claimed the championship the following day, winning against Binghamton in the afternoon and then Fairleigh Dickinson in the evening to cap off an undefeated weekend. Maryanne Boyle ’24 won the title of tournament MVP. The Friars moved to 10-1 on the season.

Men’s Soccer

The Providence College Men’s Soccer Team returned to their winning ways after defeating Loyola University Maryland 3-1, defending their home turf at Chapey Field and offering them a bit of momentum before taking on Seton Hall, ranked 22nd, this Saturday. Right-winger Roman Christopher ’22 broke the deadlock in the first half, opening his scoring account for the season. Striker Brendan McSorley ’24 helped the Friars cushion their lead, bagging a brace in the second half and continuing his good form this season.

Women’s Soccer

The women’s soccer team lost a heartbreaker in Madison, WI this Sunday to the University of Wisconsin, 3-2, in extra time. Maria Pavelgio ’25 opened the scoring, giving the Friars the lead entering halftime. Wisconsin started the second half with all the momentum, scoring twice in quick succession. The Friars fought back to grab the equalizer, thanks to a Badgers’ own goal. Unfortunately, the home side grabbed the golden goal in extra time, spoiling PC’s comeback effort. The women will face in-city rivals Brown University this Thursday at Chapey Field.

Field Hockey

Providence College Field Hockey produced a perfect 2-0 weekend, defeating both the University of New Hampshire and Long Island University at Lennon Family Field. The Friars were able to hold on to a 2-1 victory over UNH Friday night thanks to goals from Nora Goddard-Despot ’23 and Amanda Collins ’24. On Sunday, PC completed an impressive comeback effort against LIU. The Friars went down 2-0 in the first half but responded with a brilliant second half, scoring five unanswered and extinguishing the Sharks’ upset effort. Second-half goals were provided by Niamh Gowing ’22 and Olivia Ward ’21GS, who each provided two goals, along with a goal from Nora Goddard-Despot ’23.

Women’s Soccer: Success & Heartbreak

by Jack Belanger


Friar Sports


Despite Outstanding Season, Women’s Soccer Falls Short of Playoffs

By Ryan Carius ’21

Sports Staff

On April 12, the Providence College Women’s Soccer Team concluded a tremendous season. Their draw against St. John’s University cemented a final record of 7-2-3. PC came heartbreakingly close to competing for the Big East tournament, but missed out even with a strong record because of new tournament requirements adopted for the altered season. In addition to this season being played in the spring, as opposed to the normal fall season, entrance to the Big East tournament was determined by winning percentage, not overall record. The conference was also then split into two divisions, with only two teams receiving a bid from each division.  

Although the Friars missed the tournament, coach Sam Lopes praised the team for their tireless effort throughout the spring: “It was a very successful season, and a lot of it can be attributed to the talent that exists in the group and our depth.” During the duration of the 90-minute games, Lopes was able to confidently utilize 21 players, all capable of playing and helping the team win.

Coach Sam Lopes walking on Chapey Field in parka.
Photo Courtesy of PC Athletics

Lopes also remains optimistic about a season that was filled with success: “The group is certainly disappointed, but I don’t think that erases the success that we had and also the level of excitement that we have going towards our fall season because we know what we are capable of.”

The record is impressive in itself, but it is made more so when considering the uncertainty born out of the shift from the fall to the spring season, and more importantly, an offseason training program in the winter. However, the offseason proved to be vital for creating team chemistry after nearly a year of instability. “All the new players and all the returning players got a semester to some capacity to train and develop some relationships with each other before having to play a competitive match,” said Lopes as he explained the benefits of the long offseason. As tough as training in the harsh winter conditions and acclimating to warmer spring temperatures can be, Lopes believes that “the spring showcased that level of connection amongst the group from a fall semester of training.”

That group was filled with freshmen who had the tall task of replacing a strong roster of graduating seniors. They did just that, playing to the standard set by the previous year’s players. Goalkeeper Emma Bodmer ’24, in particular, had to replace Friar legend Shelby Hogan ’20RS. Throughout the season, Bodmer proved to be a worthy successor to Hogan, achieving great success in just her first year at the collegiate level. 

Lopes praised Bodmer’s abilities in the net, saying that “we just felt Emma had a level of confidence and presence about her.” After “spending some time with her in the fall, we felt that she would be equally capable of the job in goal as Shelby [Hogan] had been in the past.” 

Along with Bodmer’s tremendous play, Meg Hughes ’24 was voted Big East Freshman of the Year, becoming only the second PC women’s soccer player to ever receive the honor. Hughes led the Friars in points with 12, assists with six, and tied for the team lead in goals scored alongside Amber Birchwell ’21 with four. Lopes was not at all surprised by Hughes’ receiving the honor, saying that it was “really telling of her capabilities and the amount of respect that she has already earned among her peers in the league.” 

In addition to both Bodmer and Hughes, Lopes lauded the play of the six other Friar freshmen, who each had a large impact on the season. Lopes expressed great enthusiasm for the return of these players in the fall. “Those eight individuals have come in and already established themselves within our program, and have developed an understanding of what it takes to compete at this level,” explained Lopes. “I think they will be really instrumental as we continue to be on this consistent successful trajectory.”

Also vital to the team’s success were its seniors. They played the role of establishing the winning standard of the team, constantly driving up the level of play that would lead to the program’s ultimate success. Lopes highlighted the contributions of the seniors who “did an unbelievable job in helping the new players to get settled in and really helped educate them about who we are and our cultural values.” With the extra year of eligibility option for seniors, some will be returning for the fall season, ensuring that at least some of the team’s leadership will still be around next year as well.  

When asked about his goals for next season, Lopes explained that it is about the daily battles that will ultimately decide the team’s success. “What we are working towards is being a winner consistently day in and day out,” he explained. “We took significant steps towards that this year.” From this response, it is no surprise that the Friars were able to have a great season in a competitive division such as the Big East.

As PC turns their focus to next season, it is safe to say that they will most certainly be in the mix for a Big East title. “I think we have the talent and I think we have the right fixture of players, but more importantly I think we have the right attitude for it,” said Lopes confidently. 

With the majority of players from this season returning, the right attitude in place, and an inspiring coach, it will be exciting for the student body to attend a full slate of games in person this fall season. Lopes proudly stated, “I think now we have established a program that is nationally competitive, and for us in a highly competitive league, we want the next step to be being competitive to win the Big East.” 

The Friars certainly showed the potential to do just that this spring, and with a hopefully normal season set for the fall, the sky is the limit for Lopes and the Friars.

Sports Shorts

by Jack Belanger


Sports


Sports Shorts Week of 4/8-4/15

By Liam Tormey ’22

Sports Assistant Editor

Men’s Lacrosse:

Over the weekend, the Providence College Men’s Lacrosse Team hosted St. John’s University at Chapey Field at Anderson Stadium in a Big East matchup. The Friars dominated the contest, winning by a score of 19-9. Matt Grillo ’22 and John Hoffman ’23 led the way for the Friars. Grillo finished the evening with five goals, putting his tally up to 20 for the year, while Hoffman was right behind him with four. Toby Burgdorf ’21 recorded 15 saves in the contest. The Friars are now 4-6 on the year and 3-5 in Big East play.

Men’s and Women’s Track and Field:

Last Friday, the PC Men’s and Women’s Track and Field Teams competed at the Ocean State Invitational. For the men, AJ Ernst ’24 won the mile run with a time of 4:00.64, a facility record. Marcelo Rocha ’21 also set a facility record, in the 5,000-meter contest. Rocha won the race and finished with a time of 13:55.98. For the women, Abbey Wheeler ’21GS and Lilly Tuck ’23 won their respective races. Wheeler set a personal best and won the mile with a 4:41.93. Tuck set a personal best in the 3,000-meter with a time of 9:24.11.

Swimming and Diving: 

The PC Swimming and Diving Teams competed in the Big East Championships in Geneva, Ohio. On the men’s side, Justin Viotto ’22 won the 200-yard butterfly event to secure the conference title. After being in third for the first 150 yards of the event, Viotto used the last 50 yards to claim a victory by one one-hundredth of a second with a time of 1:48.23. Kevin Hood ’23 also won a title, winning the 100-yard breaststroke with a time of 55.52. On the women’s side, Sally Alrutz ’23 recorded a personal record in the 100-yard backstroke at 55.91, finishing fifth. Overall, the women’s team came in fifth while the men secured fourth to wrap up the season.

Women’s Soccer:

To finish out the regular season of Big East play, the PC Women’s Soccer Team traveled to Queens, New York to face St. John’s University. After being down 1-0 going into halftime, the Friars were awarded a penalty shot with just 10 minutes left to play. Christina Rodgers ’21 stepped up to the spot and recorded her first goal of the season to level the Friars at one. The game went into overtime, during which neither team would score, and the game concluded in a 1-1 draw. The Friars finish the regular season 7-2-3 overall and 5-2-3 in Big East play.