Aug 22, 2013
QUEENS, N.Y. -
After two wins in preseason action, the St. John’s women’s soccer squad will officially open the 2013 season this weekend, hosting Delaware on Friday and Fordham on Sunday. The veteran Red Storm will look to be a force in the new-look BIG EAST Conference this season, with a 12-person senior class and nine returning starters. The campaign is the 20th for head coach Ian Stone, who has guided St. John’s to a BIG EAST and ECAC Championship, an NCAA Tournament berth, 10 BIG EAST Tournaments and 210 wins in his tenure.
“It was a great preseason for us and we are cautiously optimistic about how we will do over the course of this season,” said Stone. “The freshmen have made an immediate impact, which is nice, but things do change a bit when you get to the regular season. Although I am happy about where we are at the moment after the first two preseason exhibitions, we know it is a whole different story come Friday. We are excited but recognize that we still have a lot of work to do and we have to work hard to get the success we are looking for.”
Leading the Red Storm offense is BIG EAST preseason selection Amy Marron, who returns to the pitch for her final season. Marron was a 2012 All-BIG EAST Third Team and a 2011 All-BIG EAST Second Team as well as a two-time BIG EAST preseason honoree. She has recorded 12 points on four goals and four assists in her three-year tenure and has played every field position, moving from forward to midfield to center back. Marron is back to her offensive spot in 2013 and will be the senior leader in the middle. v Morgan Ritter will help her classmate up front, as she started 11 games in 2012 with a goal and an assist. Also back up top this season is junior Chelsey Martino who sat out last season rehabilitating an injury. As a rookie in 2011, Martino tallied six points through three goals, second-highest on the team. Senior Casey Marks will add depth and experience to the front line, returning to the pitch after an injury had her sidelined for the most of 2010 and the 2011 season. She played in six games last year in her first season back.
New on offense this season is sophomore Rachel Daly
, an import from Harrogate, England. A rookie to the college game, Daly played on England’s U-17 World Cup squad that finished fourth in New Zealand in 2008. Daly scored four goals in the two exhibition games for the Red Storm.
Stone’s midfield, led by senior and central midfielder Jen Gibbons, juniors Deanna Murino, Caitlyn McLaughlin and sophomore Emily Cubbage, has both experience and youth infused into the 2013 roster. Gibbons is a three-year starter at the position and has 12 career points with four goals and four assists. Murino started 12 games in 2012 with a goal and Cubbage led last year’s Red Storm in scoring with eight points.
McLaughlin plays both midfield and forward and led St. John’s with six points in conference play last year. In 2011, McLaughlin was an All-BIG EAST rookie selection.
Rookie Miranda Haraughty will help McLaughlin play both forward and midfield. A standout for the Glens Falls, N.Y. Indians, Haraughty was a four-time Section II Class A All-Star (2009-12), a four-time Post Star first team honoree (2009-12) and a four-time New York State Sportswriters and Coaches Organization (NYSSCOGS) Class A all-state selection (2009-12).
Sophomores Shelby Halász and Diamond Thomas have one year of experience and are ready to add more depth to Stone’s midfield roster. Halász played in all 17 games last year and Thomas in nine. Halász also had a very successful summer season, as her team the New England Mutiny went to the WPSL national final four in late-July.
New to the pitch at midfield in 2013 is junior-transfer Marisa Ammaturo, and rookies Lara Kristin Pedersen and Morgan Tinari. Ammaturo played two seasons at Rhode Island before transferring to St. John’s in spring 2013. Ammaturo recorded three goals, two game-winners and four assists for 10 points during her two-year career with the Rams. Pedersen is another international import for Stone, also boasting an impressive overseas resume that includes captaining the 2010 and 2011 U-17 Icelandic National Team as well as the U-19 Icelandic Team. Pedersen was also the MVP of the Afturelding FC U-17 age group in 2010. Tinari is a local talent, as a three-time Section XI All-County, All-Conference and All-League honoree (2010-13) for the Sachem East High School Arrows. As a senior, Tinari helped Sachem East finish second in the Suffolk County League I with a record of 8-2-2 and 11-2-2 overall.
The Red Storm backfield will be led by a core group of seven seniors which includes: Kristina Quan, Sarah Ashmore, Michelle Iannacchino, Sandra Osborn, Rachel Hoffman, Michelle Murino and Hailey Hemmer. The seven of them of played in various starting positions within the Red Storm backfield since stepping foot on Belson Stadium in 2010. Iannacchino will return to the pitch this season after sitting out 2012 with an injury; as will Quan who missed the last four games of last year with a knee injury. Ashmore, Osborn and Hemmer played significant minutes as starters in 2012, with Murino and Hoffman playing nearly every game off the bench. Hoffman will compete for a starting spot this year.
The defense also has veteran help from junior Georgia Kearney-Perry, who appeared in 10 games and started six. Kearney-Perry sat out five games in early September, but returned to the field against Rutgers to help the Red Storm to two-straight shutouts.
Rookies Kelly Crevani and Diana Poulin join senior Lauren Ferris and sophomore Ellen Conway in goal. Ferris played two games last year before being sidelined with a knee injury. Conway stepped into the position of starting goalkeeper and recorded a 5-7-1 record with 73 saves and a 1.76 goals against average. Conway earned BIG EAST Rookie of the Week accolades on Oct. 1.
Poulin, another Long Island standout like Ferris, played the full exhibition against Monmouth (Aug. 18) and split the time in goal with Crevani in the opening scrimmage against St. Joseph’s (Aug. 13). Poulin, from Hauppauge, N.Y., was a member of the 2012 All-State team and the All-Long Island squad. The 2012 Suffolk County Goalkeeper of the Year went 44-8-17 in her career and posted a school-record 40 shutouts. Crevani, from Rockleigh, N.J., helped her high school, North Valley Old Tappan, to division and league championships in 2012. Poulin and Crevani combined for a shutout against St. Joseph’s.
Stone’s 20th season officially kicks off on Friday, Aug. 23 with a non-conference match up against Delaware at 7 p.m. The Red Storm will host Fordham on Sunday, Aug. 25 at 1 p.m. to finish out opening weekend.
Other non-conference home games include North Dakota State on Sunday, Sept. 1 at 7 p.m. and Friday, Sept. 20 against Dartmouth at 5 p.m.
BIG EAST play will start on Thursday, Sept. 26 with a home contest against Xavier at 7 p.m.
The Saturday, Oct. 26 game against Seton Hall at 7 p.m. will be St. John’s annual Score For A Cure Breast Cancer Awareness night, benefitting continued breast cancer research and awareness. Since April 2011, the Red Storm women’s soccer program has raised more than $8,700 for the American Cancer Society.
The Red Storm’s regular season will finish with a doubleheader with the men’s soccer team on Saturday, Nov. 2. The men will play the Saturday night opener against Georgetown at 6 p.m., then the women will play DePaul at 8 p.m. The doubleheader will feature both Senior Night and Alumnae Night for both programs. St. John’s women’s soccer will have one of its largest senior classes graduating.
St. John’s will also host Creighton (Sunday, Sept. 29 at 1 p.m.) and Villanova (Saturday, Oct. 12 at 7 p.m.) in BIG EAST action.
Season tickets are available for just $40. Call 1-888-GO-STORM to order today. Youth teams in eighth grade and below can scrimmage during halftime of any Red Storm home game. Group tickets are available for just $4 each. Call 718-990-2142 for more information. A promotional calendar will also be released.