Holy Cross programs look to build on last year’s accomplishments
Observer Sports Staff | Thursday, August 29, 2019
(Editor’s Note: Dominic Gibson is a sportswriter for The Observer.)
This year, the Holy Cross College athletic programs will look to exceed last season’s results. While some programs such as the men’s and women’s soccer teams have had young players emerge as contributors, many have veterans returning to help maintain the progress their teams have made.
After finishing last season with a 6-13 record, the Holy Cross men’s soccer team will be looking for a rebound year this season. Despite an early 3-0 loss to the Marian Knights, the Saints have gone on to win both of their last two matches. Freshman midfielder Daniel Lynch netted two goals for the Saints in a commanding 5-0 win over Grace Christian University. The Saints would continue their winning ways, grabbing the victory against crosstown rival Bethel University by the score of 3-2. Two goals from sophomore midfielder Alex Valenzuela and a goal from Lynch helped Holy Cross to the victory. The Saints will be back in action this Saturday when they host Indiana University East. Kickoff time is set for 3:30 pm.
The Holy Cross women’s soccer team will also be looking for a bounce back year after going 3-12-1 in the 2018-19 season. The Saints have started the year 2-1 with a loss to the Marian Knights 4-0, a win against Grace Christian University 5-1 and a 3-1 victory over Bethel University. A hat trick and strong performance from freshman midfielder Nicole Cook as well as a solid backline would help lift the Saints over the Grace Christian Tigers. CCAC players of the week for this week also belong to Holy Cross. On the defensive side, freshman Riley Chapla was named player of the week and on the offensive side, Cook was also pegged player of the week. The Saints will face Indiana University East on Sept. 7 at 1 p.m.
The Holy Cross Men’s tennis team will look to gain some valuable match play this fall season as they will travel to two different tournament locations as well as host a tournament and two dual matches of their own. The Saints will travel to Olivet Nazarene University to play in the ITA regional tournament as well as Michigan State University to play in an ITF event. The Saints will host both Bethel University and Indiana University Southeast in late September and mid-October, respectively. The Saints went 2-5 and finished sixth in the CCAC last season, making it to the conference tournament for the first time in their history, but suffered a first-round loss at the hands of Judson University. The Saints will be returning many of their starters, including senior Derek Wappel and CCAC conference player of the week, sophomore Dominic Gibson. Eric Mahone will also return for his second year as head coach.
The women’s tennis team for Holy Cross will be looking forward to match play as well as they travel to Olivet Nazarene University for the ITA regional and play in the Holy Cross Invitational that will take place Sept. 19-22. The Saints will be led by sophomore tandem Julie Wappel and Lucy Bruns.
The Saints men’s golf team had an impressive season this past year, tying for second place in the CCAC and winning the conference tournament, punching their ticket to the NAIA national tournament where they finished tied for 29th. This year, the golf team looks to continue their success with senior leadership from Blake Vise. The Saints will have a busy schedule this fall, with seven different tournaments on the schedule, including the Warren Classic at Notre Dame.
The Holy Cross women’s golf team will look to build off of their 2018 CCAC conference tournament performance where they finished in fourth-place overall. The Saints will only be returning one golfer from last year, sophomore Madison Pool, and feature four freshmen. The Saints also have a loaded schedule with five different tournaments on the docket.