Women’s Interhall: Pangborn and Farley ready to meet in opener
Sarah Connors, Meg Handleman, Samantha Zuba, Casey Karnes, Rich Hidy, Lesley Stevenson,Dong-Hyun Kim | Friday, September 14, 2012
Pangborn vs. Farley
By Sarah Connors
Pangborn and Farley are set to face each other in Sunday’s season opener, with each team looking for contributions from its respective young stars.
Pangborn senior captain Colleen Bailey said last year was a rebuilding year for the Phoxes. This year, they will look to build on their experience, as all the players on the team return from last season.
“There will be many sophomores on the A team, and the B team is already filled with freshmen waiting for next year,” Bailey said.
Bailey was very blunt in stating her goals for this year’s Pangborn squad.
“The plan for this season is to annihilate everyone,” she said.
Farley, which lost many seniors from last year’s team, will sport a roster filled with sophomores and juniors, many of whom were part of last season’s B-league championship team.
Senior captain Courtney Currier said she hopes that talent and success will carry over to the A-team this season.
Farley will look to win with a strategy that has taken a complete shift from last season. “Our defense controlled most of the game last year, and that is not how you win in football,” Currier said.
Instead, Farley will look to win with an explosive offense. Currier said the team has several great running backs and a strong quarterback in junior Lauren Ladowski.
“We are a team to watch, and we have a lot of star players,” Currier said.
With high hopes on the line for both sides, Pangborn will take on Farley Sunday at 4 p.m. at LaBar Fields.
Pasquerilla East vs. McGlinn
By Meg Handelman
Pasquerilla East and McGlinn will face off Sunday in the kickoff game of their respective seasons.
Pasquerilla East is looking forward to getting its freshmen on the field and seeing them contribute. With only two seniors on the team, the Pyros will be debuting several new players in their season opener.
PE sophomore Macy Mulhall will begin her second season as quarterback, and the Pyros hope to use Mulhall’s skills to get the win this week.
“We’re mostly focusing on building teamwork and learning to play together right now,” PE senior captain Anna Perino said. “All the skills and plays will come as the season progresses.”
Perino said she is especially excited for the first game. As captain, she said she is excited to work with the new girls and returning players to create a strong team.
“All in all, we love playing flag football … We are going to play hard,” Perino said.
Coming off of a championship season, McGlinn looks to begin its title defense against the Pyros.
“We won last year, so it would be great to be able to do that again,” senior captain Emily Golden said.
Golden, who will play quarterback for the Shamrocks, said she is looking forward to playing with the new talent surrounding her.
“We had a lot of girls graduate so right now we are most excited to see the new, younger players get out there and see how everyone performs,” Golden said.
One player the Shamrocks will rely on is sophomore Emma Collis, who will start at running back or receiver.
“We’re just going out there to do some trial and error and see what works best to get the team put together in the best way possible,” Golden said.
The Shamrocks and Pyros will face off Sunday at 4 p.m. at LaBar Fields.
Lyons vs. Howard
By Samantha Zuba
When Lyons and Howard square off Sunday to open the season, both teams will be looking for an offensive rhythm. Some returning players figure to be game-changing threats, but the Lions and Ducks will also incorporate several new faces.
Coaches and captains for both teams said the key to this matchup would be seeing how these two groups work together.
Howard’s coach, graduate student Dan Scheper, said he is looking forward to the game as an opportunity for the Ducks to formulate a strategy for the season.
“We’ll learn a little bit more about the team, take the opportunity to see how we want to play offense and find what our strengths are,” Scheper said.
The Ducks have some established threats, including junior Clare Robinson and sophomore Claire Kozlowski.
Lyons will also feature upperclassmen, as the team has proven contributors in senior quarterback Erica Miller and senior Aurora Kareh. Senior captain Christina Bramanti said she hopes these returning players can lead the Lions to another playoff run.
“Aurora is a beast on blocking and defense,” senior captain Christina Bramanti said.
Despite the presence of these leaders, Lyons still has questions to answer after losing three players from last year’s team. Bramanti said she believes her team will find those answers when they hit the field and gain some experience.
“We definitely want to win … We have a bigger team this year, a lot of new people, but hopefully once we get out there, everyone will get some confidence,” Bramanti said.
The Lions and Ducks face off in their season openers Sunday at 5 p.m. at LaBar Fields.
Farley vs. Pasquerilla West
By Samantha Zuba
Farley and Pasquerilla West have yet to play a single game, but both teams already possess a strong sense of dorm pride. The Finest and the Purple Weasels will look to channel their excitement into good football when they clash this Sunday.
Pasquerilla West senior captain Meghan Schmitt said her team’s goal is to return to Notre Dame Stadium for the interhall championship game like the Purple Weasels did in her first two seasons. She attributed the team’s constant success to a culture of group bonding and team spirit.
“We have a lot of girls come out every year,” Schmitt said. “20 to 30 freshmen come out because the upperclassmen get so excited about it. We do well because we like being together.”
Schmitt said she hopes her team will mesh just as well on the field. She cites a strong defense, a formidable receiving corps and sophomore quarterback Lauren Vidal as keys to success for the Purple Weasels.
Last year, many were surprised by Farley’s unexpected B-League championship, but senior captain Courtney Currier was not. She said the Finest generated a lot of excitement, which translated into on-field success.
“Farley football really took off last year where so many people came out and Rec Sports finally had the option for dorms to have two teams … And they went out and won it all,” Currier said.
With Farley divided into two teams, freshmen will have more opportunities to prove themselves. This year, one player has caught everyone’s eye, Currier said.
“[Freshman] Allie Forlenza is a killer receiver,” Currier said. “She really stood out the first day. And we were like, ‘Who is that?'”
The Finest and Purple Weasels will display their enthusiasm and athleticism Sunday at 6 p.m. at LaBar Fields.
Cavanaugh vs. Walsh
By Casey Karnes
After experiencing disappointing endings to last season, both Cavanaugh and Walsh will look to generate positive momentum for the season when they battle Sunday.
Cavanaugh will look to recover from a heartbreaking loss in last year’s championship game, which came after an undefeated regular season. Senior captain Rosemary Kelly, who plays safety and quarterback, said she believes the Chaos have the ability to win the title this year.
“We are looking to go out on top this year,” Kelly said. “Our defense should be a huge strength, as we have tons of talent returning from a unit that shut down opponents all season.”
The Chaos defense will be bolstered by the play of senior lineman Tegan Chapman. The offense, however, is less settled, as the team will rotate Kelly, sophomore Sarah Vogel and sophomore Samantha Flores at quarterback.
“Having three quality quarterbacks is a huge advantage, especially since all of us have our own strengths,” Kelly said.
On the other side of the ball, Walsh will look to rebound from a difficult season in which it went 1-5.
“Last year was a rebuilding year for us as we had a lot of inexperienced young talent,” senior captain and quarterback Kat Leach said. “This year we are more seasoned and boast a very strong freshman class.”
The Wild Women hope an influx of talent, led by freshman quarterback Frances Mitchell, will combine with an experienced defense to push them into contention. Returning starters on defense include senior captain Lindy Sanchez at cornerback and seniors Alex Meyer, Alyssa Casill and Jen Rawding along the defensive line. With Leach returning at quarterback, the Wild Women will look for the upset victory Sunday.
“We want to come out strong this weekend and show that Walsh is ready to play,” Leach said.
Walsh and Cavanaugh face off Sunday at 6 p.m. at LaBar Fields.
Farley vs. Ryan
By Rich Hidy
A matchup of two top teams will take place when Farley faces Ryan on Monday.
Farley, coming off a semifinal appearance in last year’s playoffs, will look to excel with a roster of several newcomers.
“We are a young team this year with completely new players,” Finest senior captain Courtney Currier said. “We need to figure out how we play together.”
Farley will look to get its historically inconsistent offense on track to start the season, Currier said.
“We had a great defense last year that carried our offense,” she said. “We need to get better with our offensive skills and getting the ball down the field.”
Leading Farley’s offense will be junior Lauren Ladowski, a dual-threat quarterback making her first start. Ladowski will pair with speedy sophomore running back Madison Nelson. Currier said Farley is anxious to show the improvements it has made on the field.
“We are excited to get to know each other,” Currier said. “We have uncertainty but not a nervous uncertainty. We have the confidence that we will be able to do this.”
Compiling a 6-0 regular season record in 2011, Ryan carries a title of preseason favorite into its matchup with Farley.
“We will have a lot to prove,” Ryan senior captain Maya Pillai said. “We are coming off an undefeated regular season and return a strong core of our team.”
Led by dynamic junior receiver Maddie Swan on offense and junior Leah Fisher on defense, the Wildcats expect to be strong on both sides of the ball.
“We need to play like we know how to play,” Pillai said. “We expected to mercy-rule teams last year.”
Even though the Wildcats aim to win, Pillai said they want to have fun along the way.
“We were the first freshman class in Ryan,” Pillai said. “We are establishing a tradition of excellence.”
Farley and Ryan face off Monday at 10 p.m. at the Riehle Fields at Stepan.
Pasquerilla West vs. Breen-Phillips
By Rich Hidy
In a Tuesday evening matchup, Pasquerilla West will take on Breen-Phillips with a pivotal victory on the line in the season opener.
Pasquerilla West will look to pick up where it left off last season, when the Purple Weasels lost one regular season game.
“We have a very strong returning team and hopefully we can get our routes down,” Pasquerilla West senior captain Meghan Schmitt said. “We recruited a lot of athletic freshman that can pick up the game really fast.”
The Purple Weasels will look to succeed with a retooled offense, as sophomore Lauren Vidal takes over at quarterback. Vidal will look to target talented senior receiver Alice Yerokun.
“We had a fantastic quarterback that graduated, and she was a two year starter,” Schmitt said. “We had to re-work our offense, so hopefully it can get in synch this year.”
Schmitt said football brings the Purple Weasels together as a community.
“We look forward to the season every year,” Schmitt said. “We love being with each other and even hanging out on the weekends.”
Breen-Phillips will look to its season opener with a substantial amount of hope. Even though the team finished last season winless and hasn’t won a game in years, junior captain Molly Toner said there is optimism for the Babes this season.
“We have been practicing really hard and I think we have a good shot of winning [the season opener against Pasquerilla West],” Toner said. “They are a great team but we are hoping we can compete this year.”
Toner said the Babes will be energized by their large crop of freshmen.
“We have a lot of excited freshmen, and we are using their enthusiasm to propel us,” Toner said. “We are all friends and a community, and I think that shines on the football field.”
Pasquerilla West will square off against Breen-Phillips Tuesday at 7 p.m. at the Riehl Fields at Stepan.
Welsh Family vs. Lewis
By Sarah Connors
Coming off seasons in which they both missed the playoffs, Welsh Family and Lewis will realize the promise of a new season when they meet Sunday afternoon.
The game will feature a major showdown between senior captains and quarterbacks Connaught Blood of Lewis and Victoria Moreno of Welsh Family, both of whom suit up for their respective teams for the fourth year in a row.
The other major storyline for both teams is youth, as they both feature several new starters.
For Lewis, Blood said she hopes the freshmen will be able to see some playing time on the offensive end in Sunday’s contest.
“The freshmen are a great group,” Blood said. “They are looking especially promising on offense.”
On the other side of the line, Lewis will feature a tough defense, anchored by senior Mara Catlaw.
Welsh Family will deal with similar questions of youth and inexperience as it heads into Sunday’s game.
“We have a brand new team,” Moreno said. “There are many young players, and we also have new coaches.”
Moreno said she is very excited to see what the new coaches have in store for the Whirlwinds. In addition to Moreno, Welsh Family’s offense will rely on senior receiver Kirsten Groody, the Whirlwinds’ top pass catcher last season.
Despite the questions surrounding the team, Moreno said Welsh Family’s goals for the season are simple: Reach the championship game.
“We are going to take it one game at a time, but we really want to make it to the stadium this year,” Moreno said.
Lewis and Welsh Family are set to play Sunday at 5 p.m. at LaBar Fields.
McGlinn vs. Lewis
By Lesley Stevenson
With both teams eager for early-season success, McGlinn and Lewis will square off Monday night for each team’s second game in as many days.
Despite starting the season with consecutive games, McGlinn senior captain Emily Golden said her team would not be deterred by its schedule.
“We’re really quick; we have a lot of fast girls, and we seem to be in pretty good shape,” Golden said about her team’s strengths. As many players graduated from last year’s championship team, McGlinn will look for help from its freshmen to repeat its success.
“We’re a young team, but we’re pretty good so far,” Golden said.
On the other sideline, Lewis will look to tighten up its communication skills and capitalize on its strong group of returning senior players.
“We have a great group of seniors, so we’re all basically captains in a way,” senior captain Connaught Blood said.
While the team’s freshmen look promising, Blood said the key for Lewis is fostering the connections between its new and returning players.
Both captains highlighted their team’s respective offenses and said the match up could turn into an offensive battle.
Golden said observers should look out for sophomore Shamrocks running back Emma Collis. “In practice, she’s a beast,” Golden said. “She can make ridiculous catches.”
On the other side, Blood said Chicks junior receiver Colleen Haller will be an asset for the team’s offense.
“She’s really athletic and a pretty good weapon for us,” Blood said.
The Shamrocks continue on the road to title defense when they face Lewis on Monday at 10 p.m. at the Riehle Fields at Stepan.
Lyons vs. Cavanaugh
By Dong-Hyun Kim
Lyons and Cavanaugh will face off Tuesday in a sequel to last year’s first-round playoff matchup. Cavanaugh won 18-6 in last year’s matchup, a part of its run to the championship game.
“Last year, a big part of our loss was that we lost many players, so everyone played the entire game and we were tired,” Lyons captain and cornerback Christina Bramanti said.
Lyons hopes for a different result this year, as fresh legs have been added to the Lions squad. Although the team consists of many freshmen, senior quarterback Erica Miller, who has had prior experience at the position, figures to be a key element in Lyons’s offense.
Bramanti said the Lions defense will be crucial in slowing down Cavanaugh’s offensive attack in the early-season meeting.
“Defense has gotten better at containing the rushing and passing game,” Bramanti said. “We keep Cavanaugh in mind because they beat us, and we are taking one step at a time with Sunday’s game against [Howard] in mind.”
Meanwhile Cavanaugh is also very defense-oriented, as the Chaos allowed only nine points in the entire regular season last year.
“We treat every game like it is the most important, against the toughest team,” Cavanaugh senior captain Rosemary Kelly said. “Adjustments may be made but the intention to show our best remains.”
Cavanaugh’s offense will include a veteran presence, as senior center Kelly Brakora and senior receiver Erica Chenard return for the Chaos. Cavanaugh will also run a unique three-quarterback rotation, as three strong candidates contend for the starting job.
Lyons and Cavanaugh will meet Tuesday at 7 p.m. at LaBar Fields.