2018 College at Brockport fall sports previews

By on September 3, 2018
Jake O’Connell

Jake O’Connell


One season removed from their run to the national semi-final playoff game, the preseason fourth ranked nationally Golden Eagles will try to repeat as Empire 8 champions with many of their key pieces intact, but with an almost entirely new offensive line.

“Very excited,” American Football Coaches Association (AFCA) National and Regional Coach of the Year Jason Mangone said.

“We will have nine senior starters on defense, which will play big for us. In addition to that our entire rotation of defensive lineman are back along with some great new players.

“Optimism is high but so is the target on our back. This is the position we want to be in every year.”

That defense ranked tenth in the nation in yards allowed per game and 14th allowing 14.1 points per game. Since the offense averaged 453 yards per game and 37 points, that was a solid formula for success last season.

Junior quarterback Joe Germinerio returns along with offensive weapons in senior running back Justin Morrison (1,027 yards rushing) and junior receivers DaQuan Hubbard (1,081 yards on 47 receptions) and Joseph Ortiz (team-high 81 catches) and sophomore Tyree Brown (862 yards on 58 catches).

The key will be the offensive line anchored by senior Caleb Ferdilus.

“We will have four new starters there and we are still figuring out who they will be,” Mangone said one week into training camp. “It’s exciting though because we have some very talented guys battling for those spots.”

On defense, Spencerport grad and fifth year senior Jake O’Connell, who led the team with seven interceptions and ran three back for touchdowns, is among the nine returners. Linebacker and leading tackler Matt Syzmanski is also back with junior Alex West and senior defensive lineman Austin Dean to anchor the nation’s tenth best defense in 2017.

Among the key newcomers are post-grad transfer Cedric Campbell, a safety from Birmingham-Southern College in Georgia, sophomore transfer Alex Benson, a wide receiver via Pace College and transfer freshman tailback Zach Samborski.

The team opens with by hosting Hobart September 1 before their conference schedule begins at Ithaca September 8. They will also host this year’s Courage Bowl against St. John Fisher September 29.

Women’s volleyball

Maddy Taylor

Maddy Taylor

After three consecutive undefeated conference championships, the Golden Eagles enter 2018 with a repeat in mind and a deeper run in the NCAA playoffs.

“We graduated a lot of experience in several key positions so there are lots of opportunities for returners to contribute even more this fall,” head coach Steve Pike said.

“Maddy Taylor, our returning starting libero (460 digs), needs to be even more of a leader than she has been. Cassie Birth at outside hitter and Emily Orminski as a setter all are seniors for us this year.

“Lindsey Luce, Elena Grossman and Christa Mickol, who all took a step forward last year as sophomores will be contributing even more this fall for us on and off the court. Both Laiken Fox (second on the team with 300 kills) and (SUNYAC Rookie of the Year) Meghan Mastro will be looking to build from great freshman seasons for us.

“We have a lot of new comers and all of them could be contributing on the court with playing time and pushing the returners every day in practice to make our gym a highly competitive one. We have some great experience for new comers with lots of experience as upperclassmen Abbey Manning, Kristen Lansburg and Brittany Orminiski are all going to help make us better in serving, passing and defense.  Freshman Shelby Budnick, Alexi Hamilton, Lauren Hess, Myah Frostclapp, Kerri McHale and Rebekah Ugenti have already had a positive impact on our team in (the opening of camp).”

The six-team Golden Eagle Invitational is September 7 and 8 with the conference opener September 21 in Cortland for pool play.

Men’s soccer

Jason Hayes (left)

Jason Hayes (left)

The team lost two of their top five scorers, but return both offense and leadership in the midfield as they look to better their ten-win campaign from a year ago.

“Our goal this season is consistent every year; qualify for the SUNYAC Playoffs, win the SUNYAC Championship and earn a bid to the DIII NCAA tournament,” head coach Gary LaPietra said. “We have a very skillful and exciting group of players. Although we are very young with only three seniors, we have many outstanding players that are ready to compete at the highest level.”

Senior captain Quintin Volpe and junior captain Jason Hayes (Brockport HS) will provide offense from the midfield while the coaching staff expects more from returners midfielders AJ Sinclair and Chris Kinsley, junior forwards Russell Hines and Jeff Hibbard (Hilton), sophomore forwards Nolan Byrnes and Noah Mohamed, junior defender Mike Meyers and junior goalkeeper Joey Romano, who allowed fewer than one goal per game in 18 starts last season.

They will need to rebuild their back line after losing three seniors from the unit.

Goalkeeper Tautis Poniskiatis from England arrives from Cayuga CC to compete for playing time, Brett Healey (Hilton) is an MCC transfer and Nikolas Sgaraglio returns at forward after a year at Old Westbury.

Section V Player of the Year Ayub Jeylani via School 58 World of Inquiry is among the freshmen along with Brockport HS products Ben Leach and Zach Langelotti, Hilton’s Brett Healey plus Dom Duncan and Matt Stefaniw.

The team will play seven non-conference games before beginning SUNYAC conference action with four straight on the road. They could take advantage of the five conference home games to end the regular season.

Women’s soccer

Lyndsay Lovett

Lyndsay Lovett

The good news is that Brockport has made the conference playoffs in each of the last three seasons, but getting bounced in the first round each time has grown old.

“We’re excited about the upcoming season,” third-year head coach Mike Idland said. “We will have significantly more experience on the field than we did last year and it will be interesting to see what that maturity brings to the team in terms of results.”

Seniors Maddy Siclare (Hilton) and Lyndsay Lovett (Byron-Bergen)—second and third on the team in scoring—are back at midfield and defense respectively after their All-Conference seasons along with junior forward Molly Zientek, who finished with four goals last season.

Junior goalkeeper Kimberly Lubanski is the only goalkeeper officially on the roster and she started half of the games in 2017 allowing fewer than one goal per game.

The defense is young, but gained a lot of experience last season led by Lovett, senior Olivia Kuter (Churchville-Chili) with sophomores Marissa Greiner and Rian McMullen (Churchville-Chili).

“It’s a very balanced recruiting class and it is hard to say which of the newcomers will bring the most productivity to the team at this point…the majority of our class is from Syracuse, Albany, or Long Island but Lexi Couture, from Greece Athena, will be joining us as a sophomore and we’re excited about what she brings to the picture in the midfield.”

The squad will need to get off to a solid start as they host their first four SUNYAC contests starting September 21 against Plattsburgh.

Field hockey

Christina Conkling

Christina Conkling

Head coach Krista Archambeau is beginning to put her stamp on the program in her second year on the sidelines, but after her first real recruiting season since arriving in spring 2017.

“I’m very excited for the upcoming season and eager to see what growth and success it comes with, the two-time East Rochester state champion said.

“The senior class (Christina Conkling, Adriana DeDie, Kelsey Devine, Mariah Clark) has done an excellent job leading the team thus far and I foresee that continuing into this fall.

“Along with the seniors, I anticipate sophomores Katie Ziemba and Emily Hall to take a jump in leadership and productivity, as they took on huge roles for the team last season as freshmen. Overall, all the returners are extremely motivated and dedicated to be successful and I am enthusiastic about the future of the program.”

Ziemba is the leading returning scorer and Hall both started all 18 contests as freshmen.

The program welcomes 11 freshmen, including Hilton grad Carissa Green, and one transfer plus new assistant coach Kaysie Gregory joining Marissa Vedella.

The home opener is September 5 versus Nazareth and the six-game SUNYAC schedule begins at Oswego on September 22.

Photos provided by Tori Langseder, Brockport Athletics


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