August 24, 2011

Welcome to Fall Semester

Athletic teams look to build on top rating

The Emory men's soccer team will look to take another step forward during the 2011 season. (Photo courtesy Emory Athletics)

The Emory volleyball team will gear up for another serious run for the national crown. (ER file photo)

Hopes are high heading into the Emory Eagles 2011-12 season.

Emory's athletics department finished seventh in the most recent Learfield Sports Directors' Cup Division III standings — the 10th time in the past 11 years that the Eagles have recorded a top-10 showing.

Kicking off the new campaign to retain Emory's standing in overall athletic excellence will be five fall squads, four of whom qualified for NCAA Tournament action a year ago.

Men's Soccer

The Emory men's soccer team will look to take another step forward during the 2011 season, following a 14-3-2 record and a trip to the second round of the NCAA Division III Championships in 2010.  The Eagles finished 18th in the final NSCAA poll, setting program records with a 0.41 goals-against average and 13 shutouts.  Among the team's leading returners will be junior Andrew Natalino, who was named to the NSCAA All-America Third Team last year after pacing all Emory players with 11 goals and 26 points.  Adding to the Eagles' offensive attack will be senior forwards Zach Samuels (an all-South Atlantic Region third team selection) and Nao Masuda (an honorable-mention pick to the all-UAA team).  After setting school records in both saves percentage and goals-against average, senior all-region first team selection Trenton Spindler will once again mind the net for the Eagles in 2011. 

Women's Soccer

With most of the squad that reached the quarterfinals of the NCAA Division III Championships last season returning for the first time in school history, the Emory women's soccer team is poised for a successful 2011 campaign.  The Eagles finished 2010 with an overall record of 16-2-4 and a No. 5 national ranking, highest in the history of the program.  Leading the Eagles' returners will be sophomore center back and second-team all-American Lauren Gorodetsky, who became the first Division III freshman to earn all-America honors in four years.   Emory returns junior goalkeepers, Kaele Leonard and Erica Stein, who split time between the pipes in 2010.  Offensively, UAA Rookie of the Year Kelly Costopoulos is back for her sophomore season after leading all Eagles with eight goals and 17 points.  Sophomore Clare Mullins (a team-high six assists) and junior Lee Bachouros (one goal and five assists) return for Emory as well.


After coming tantalizingly close to capturing its second national title in three years in 2010, the Emory volleyball team will gear up for another serious run for the national crown.  Last year's squad compiled an overall win-loss slate of 36-5, establishing a school mark for most wins in a season.  Among the vets returning is Amelia McCall, a fifth-year senior who was chosen by the AVCA as the 2010 Division III National Player of the Year.  Senior Natalie Schonefeld, an honorable mention All-America and First Team Al-UAA pick last season, will direct the Eagles' offense at the setter position after ranking ninth nationally in assists.  Bolstering the team's fortunes will be senior outside hitter Jessica McAlvany, a Third Team All-American last year, and junior middle hitter Breanah Bourque, who blossomed last season en route to earning Second Team All-America kudos.

Women's Cross Country

With 19 appearances in the NCAA Division III Championships over the past 20 seasons, the 2011 Emory women's cross country team looks to maintain its status one of the country's most consistent programs.  Among the personnel returning from last year is senior Tess Gallegos, who was named the South/Southeast Region Athlete of the Year after taking home first place at the NCAA South/Southeast Regional Championships a year ago.   Senior Sara Gelb and junior Melanie Frank are key veterans who captured all-region honors in 2010.

Men's Cross Country

The 2011 edition of the Emory men's cross country team comes off a rebuilding phase last season.  Spearheading the Eagles' efforts this year will be junior Stephen Ellwood, the squad's MVP, who ranked as the team's top runner in five of the six meets he took part in a year ago, and who also brought home all-region acclaim.  Senior Geraint Davies continues his steady improvement and is ready for a breakout season after scoring in all seven of his competitions in 2010.

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