Royal Review: Aug. 31-Sept. 2 (No. 1 in a weekly series)

The University of Scranton women's volleyball team opened the season by going 4-0 at the Battlefield Classic at Gettysburg University.
The University of Scranton women's volleyball team opened the season by going 4-0 at the Battlefield Classic at Gettysburg University.

Men’s Cross Country

The Royals opened the season by placing fourth in the 10-team field at the Marywood Invitational on Saturday, Sept. 1, at McDade Park in Scranton.

Sophomore Bill Burke (Scranton, Pa./Scranton Preparatory) led Scranton with a 16th-place finish, covering the 5.9-kilometer course in 22:08. Juniors Walter Cantwell (Collingwood, N.J./Camden Catholic) and Stefan Bossbaly (Washington Crossing, Pa./Holy Ghost Preparatory) and senior Matt Willcox (West Chester, Pa./Malvern Preparatory) were next across the finish line for the Royals in 22nd (22:31), 23rd (22:31), and 24th (22:49), respectively.  Rounding out Scranton’s top five was freshman Corey Wasilnak (Endwell, N.Y./Maine Endwell) in 26th place in 22:57.

The Royals return to action Saturday, Sept. 8, at the Vassar Invitational in Poughkeepsie, N.Y.

Women’s Cross Country

Junior Cara Notarianni (Dunmore, Pa./Scranton Preparatory) led The University of Scranton to a runner-up team finish at the season-opening Marywood Invitational Saturday morning at McDade Park.

Limited to just one race in the last two years due to injuries, Notarianni returned to cover the 4,000-meter course in 17:03 to finish sixth overall in the 70-runner field. She led the Royals to 64 points, good for second place behind Marywood University, which finished with 18 points.

Rounding out the Royals’ top five were junior Mary O’Neill (Middletown, N.J./Middletown North), sophomore Laura Fay (Thornton, Pa./Padua Academy), senior Veronica Kurtulik (Cornwall-on-Hudson, N.Y./Cornwall Central) and freshman Abigail Roselli (Romansville, Pa./Bishop Shanahan) in 12th (17:45), 15th (17:51), 20th (18:27), and 21st (18:31), respectively.

Scranton will take part in the Vassar Invitational on Saturday, Sept. 8, in Poughkeepsie, N.Y.

Field Hockey (1-1)

The University of Scranton field hockey team split a pair of games on the opening weekend, losing in overtime at Muhlenberg, 2-1, on Friday, Aug. 31, before defeating Marywood University, 4-0, on Saturday, Sept. 1.

On Friday evening, the Royals rallied from a one-goal deficit when senior forward Gretchen Kempf (Warrington, Pa./Central Bucks South) scored on an assist by sophomore forward Alyssa Fania (Annandale, N.J./North Hunterdon) in the second half.

But the Mules scored in the first minute of overtime to secure the victory.

The Royals bounced back a day later, rolling past Marywood at Fitzpatrick Field behind a goal and an assist each from Fania and junior midfielder Laura Megargel (Morristown, N.J./Morristown). Scranton also received goals from Kempf and junior midfielder Jessica Conroy (Havertown, Pa./Merion Mercer Academy) while improving to 30-6-1 all-time against Marywood.

Scranton is back in action on Wednesday, Sept. 5, when the Royals travel to Dallas, Pa. to face Misericordia University at 4 p.m.

Men’s golf

The Utica Fall Invitational has become a very friendly event for junior Charles Hudacek (Moosic, Pa./Scranton Preparatory) and The University of Scranton men’s golf team.

Hudacek repeated as individual champion while the Royals opened the season by winning the team championship for the fourth straight year by shooting a team total of 294 at Skenondoa Golf Club in Clinton, N.Y.

Hudacek fired an even-par 72 to edge sophomore teammate Erik Meyer (Clarks Summit, Pa./Abington Heights) by a shot. Scranton also received a 74 from freshman Ryan Brown (Scranton, Pa./Scranton Preparatory), 75 from junior Grant Gulick (Binghamton, N.Y./Johnson City), 76 from senior Justin Riley (Haymarket, Va./Battlefield) and 77 from senior Jamie Bresnahan (Exeter, Pa./Wyoming Area).

Scranton returns to action on Wednesday, Sept. 5, when the Royals face Baptist Bible College at Scranton Municipal Golf Course in Mount Cobb, Pa. at noon.

Men’s soccer (2-0)

The Royals opened the season with a pair of wins for the fourth time in the past five seasons, defeating Farmingdale State, 4-0, and McDaniel, 2-1.

In the season opener against Farmingdale State on Friday, Aug. 31, at Fitzpatrick Field, senior midfielder Bill McGuiness (Forty Fort, Pa./Wyoming Valley West) led the offense with a goal and two assists. Sophomore forward Kevin Kozic (Raritan, N.J./Immaculata), sophomore midfielder Rich Loeffler (Matawan, N.J./Christian Brothers Academy) and freshman forward Ryan Smith (Maple Glen, Pa./Hatboro-Horsham) each added a goal while senior midfielder Matthew Salvatore (Howell, N.J./Howell) had an assist.

A day later, the Royals fell behind McDaniel in the third minute of the game, but rallied to remain undefeated. Salvatore and senior midfielder Patrick M. Daley (Rochester, N.Y./Aquinas) scored for Scranton while junior defender Stephen Kilty (Downingtown, Pa./Downingtown West) had two assists and Loeffler added an assist of his own.

Scranton returns to action on Friday, Sept. 7, when it hosts Marietta College at 7 p.m. at Fitzpatrick Field.

Women’s soccer (0-0-2)

The University of Scranton women’s soccer team played to a pair of draws at the Haverford Kickoff Classic in Haverford, Pa. over the weekend.

The Royals opened with a 3-3 tie in double overtime against William Paterson University on Saturday, Sept. 1. Scranton received goals from sophomore midfielder Megan Gilmartin (Glen Rock, N.J./Glen Rock), sophomore forward Kelsey O’Kane (Springfield, Pa./Cardinal O’Hara) and freshman forward Gianna Vitolo (Denville, N.J./Morris Knolls). Junior forward Samantha Russo (Yorktown Heights, N.Y./Yorktown) added two assists.

The game was officially recorded as a draw, but Scranton and William Paterson went to penalty kicks to determine who would advance to Sunday’s championship match. The Pioneers advanced by winning the shootout, 4-1.

In Sunday’s consolation, Scranton battled Arcadia to a 0-0 draw after two overtimes. Junior goalkeeper Kelsy McAnelly (West Chester, Pa./Villa Maria Academy) made two saves, including one in the second overtime to preserve the tie.

The Royals are back in action on Wednesday, Sept. 5, when they travel to Edwardsville, Pa. to take on Wilkes University at 4 p.m.

Women’s Volleyball (4-0)

The University of Scranton women’s volleyball team opened the season by sweeping all four of its matches at the Battlefield Classic at Gettysburg University on Friday, Aug. 31, and Saturday, Sept. 1.

Sophomore outside hitter Julia Crilly (Rochester, N.Y./Aquinas Institute) earned a spot on the all-tournament team by totaling 43 kills in the four matches.

Scranton opened the event by defeating both RIT and Dickinson, 3-0, on Friday evening. They continued that hot streak on Saturday by beating Mt. St. Mary (N.Y.), 3-1, and Gettysburg, 3-0.

The Royals also received 41 kills from senior outside hitter Janell McFadden (Springfield, Pa./Merion Mercy Academy), 61 assists from senior setter Juli Woods (Wallingford, Pa./Strath Haven), 50 assists from senior setter Emily Keim (Bethlehem, Pa./Liberty) and 65 digs from senior libero Marissa Every (East Norriton, Pa./Mt. St. Joseph Academy) on the weekend.

The Royals return to action Tuesday, Sept. 4, in their home opener against King’s College at 7 p.m. in the Long Center.

This Week in University of Scranton Athletics

Tuesday, Sept. 4
Women’s volleyball – vs. King’s College (7 p.m.)

Wednesday, Sept. 5
Field hockey – at Misericordia (4 p.m.)
Men’s golf – vs. Baptist Bible College, Scranton Municipal Golf Course (noon)
Women’s soccer – at Wilkes (4 p.m.)

Friday, Sept. 7
Men’s soccer – vs. Marietta College (7 p.m.)
Women’s volleyball – Scranton Invitational, vs. Marywood (4 p.m.)
Women’s volleyball – Scranton Invitational, vs. Wilkes (8 p.m.)

Saturday, Sept. 8
Men’s cross country – at Vassar Invitational (10:30 a.m.)
Women’s cross country – at Vassar Invitational (11 a.m.)
Field hockey – vs. Keystone (3:30 p.m.)
Men’s soccer – vs. St. John Fisher (6 p.m.)
Women’s soccer – vs. Ithaca (1 p.m.)
Women’s volleyball – Scranton Invitational, vs. Keystone (11 a.m.)
Women’s volleyball – Scranton Invitational, vs. Pitt.-Bradford (3 p.m.)

Sunday, Sept. 9
Women’s soccer – vs. Lebanon Valley (1 p.m.)