The University of Maryland field hockey team is 4-0 and ranked second in the nation and keying the effort is sophomore Anna Dessoye.
Dessoye (Crestwood) leads the Terps in points (13) and assists (five) and is tied for first in goals scored (four). She had the first two goals in a recent 3-0 victory over No. 8 Old Dominion.
“Anna’s just done a tremendous job being our most prolific goal scorer,” coach Missy Meharg said. “She has the highest number of shots on the team.”
Dessoye played in all 24 games and started 20 and had five goals and three assists as a freshman.
“I think Anna’s opportunity to compete in the Junior World Cup this past summer has helped her to take her game to a whole new level,” Meharg said.
The coach also likes Dessoye’s versatility.
“Last year she was a significant part of our success but this year she has come in and she’s been a pleasure to coach,” Meharg said. “We’re really excited about her flexibility and her ability to play in the front three as well as in the midfield.”
SOTO SEES ACTION – It didn’t take long for Shakir Soto to get onto the field with the Pittsburgh football team. Defensive tackle Soto (GAR Memorial) played in the season-opener against Florida State and collected three tackles, two for losses, as the Panthers made their Atlantic Coast Conference debut with a 41-13 loss to the Seminoles.
“Shakir is a true freshman but we thought he did one heck of a job against Florida State,” Pitt head coach Paul Chryst said. “He has been a worker from the time he arrived in January.”
The 6-foot-3, 255-pound Soto, a two-time All-Pennsylvania selection while at GAR, finished his high school career with 52 sacks and was one of the top recruits in the state.
“We were excited when we signed him and his performance in practice and against the Seminoles only served to reinforce that feeling,” Chryst said. “I expect Shakir to continue to progress and be an important contributor on our defensive front.”
The Panthers, idle last weekend, return to the field in a non-league game against New Mexico Saturday in Pittsburgh.
WATCH LIST FOR SCHMID – Joseph Schmid (Wyoming Valley West) is into his final season playing with the Monmouth men’s soccer team. He’s coming off a big junior season when he was named to the All-Region and All-Northeast Conference first team.
“Joseph is an outstanding player,” coach Bob McCourt said. “He has been named to the Hermann Award (college soccer’s Heisman Trophy) because he is one of the top midfielders in the country.”
Schmid hasn’t scored in Monmouth’s first three games, but has scored 11 goals with nine assists in his first three seasons, including a freshman year at Villanova. He had five goals and three assists last season.
“Joseph is our captain and is the leader of the team,” McCourt said. “He is the epitome of the term student-athlete. He does very well in the class room as well as on the field.”
The Hawks are 1-2 in the early going but are contenders for the NEC title.
BIG GAME FOR NEWAK – Sophomore Jess Newak had a goal and an assist on the game-winner as her Wake Forest field hockey team defeated No. 8 Michigan 2-1 in the Atlantic Coast Conference-Big Ten Challenge last Sunday in Iowa City, Iowa. Newak (Crestwood) is in her second season as a starter, having scored five goals with three assists as a freshman. The points against Michigan were her first this season.
“I think Jess’ discipline has improved this season,” coach Jennifer Averill said. “Her understanding of the college game has improved along with her awareness both offensive and defensively.”
Averill, who recorded her 300th victory in a season-opening triumph over Miami, puts Newak’s game in perspective.
“Last year, she was just a quick hockey player and now her hockey skill level is catching up with her quickness,” the coach said.
DUO HELPING EAGLES – Sophomores Kelcie Hromisin (Wyoming Valley West) and AshLeigh Sebia of Plains (Wyoming Seminary) are solid performers for the Boston College field hockey team.
Hromisin has scored two goals and had a key score in a 5-4 victory over Maine.
“Kelcie has one of the best work rates I have seen in my career,” veteran coach Ainslee Lamb said. “She is coachable, focused and determined. She takes every opportunity to get better and she uses every minute – every second for that matter – on the field to make a difference for the team.”
Sebia has a goal and an assist and had the first goal in a 2-1 triumph over Rutgers.
“AshLeigh also has an incredible work rate and a passion for Boston College,” Lamb said. “She is an impact on the field in both practice and game situations. Her pride to represent our programs in all aspects is admirable and her desire to be the best she can be to contribute to the success and level of play for the team is awesome.”
The Eagles, ranked 19th in the country, are 4-1 after a 4-2 loss to No. 14 Massachusetts last Sunday.
PIERCE CHIPPING IN – Senior Kevin Pierce (Dallas) continues to be a key reserve for the 25th-ranked Carnegie Mellon men’s soccer team. The 6-foot-1 forward hasn’t scored to date this season, but picked up an assist in 13 games off the bench last season.
“Kevin has been an integral part of our success during his time here,” coach Arron Lujan said. “This season, we expect him to play a significant role. He has been playing well thus far due to his improved movement without the ball. He definitely is an important player for our team.”
The Tartans are 3-1 after a 1-0 victory over Elizabethtown last Sunday. The only loss was a 2-1 double overtime setback against Dickinson last Saturday.
HILLMAN KNOWS THE SCORE –Senior Leigh Hillman (Lake-Lehman) scored the first two goals as the Bucknell field hockey team posted a 3-2 overtime victory over Ohio State Sunday in Columbus, Ohio. She now has a team-high three goals, an assist and a team-high seven points on the season. She had seven goals and an assist for 15 points last season.
“Leigh has a contagiously optimistic personality and is one of the hardest working student-athletes on our team,” coach Jeremy Cook said. “She has made tremendous on-field progress since her arrival here and has been a big part of our progress as a program during that time.”
The Bison are 2-2 and face Drexel Friday in Philadelphia.
REXER STEPPING UP – After a solid freshman season, sophomore Hallie Rexer (Holy Redeemer) has become a key performer for the St. Francis, Pa., women’s soccer team, which is currently 3-2-1 on the season. Rexer, a 5-foot-6 midfielder, has played in all six games and started two and has taken five shots but is still looking for her first points. She had two goals and an assist off the bench as a freshman.
“Hallie worked hard over the spring and summer and she’ll help our team accomplish our goals this fall,” coach Brenda van Stralen said. “With a year under her belt, she will step in at a higher level than last year. She understands what our expectations are for her in the midfield.”