GENESEO, N.Y. - The SUNY Geneseo Women's Soccer team begins the 2017 campaign on Friday, Sept. 1 with a trip to St. Lawrence University to take on the Saints as head coach Nate Wiley and the Knights seek to continue the success they've enjoyed in recent history.
Since 2013, the Knights have earned 43 victories, reaching the State University of New York Athletic Conference finals three times, including a conference championship and NCAA Tournament berth in 2014.
"On a yearly basis, we expect to compete for a conference championship," said Wiley. "This is a team with pretty good tradition over the last four or five years - we've been to the conference finals three of the last four years and won a championship - so, I think that's definitely the expectation for us and certainly our goal is to win the conference."
This season the Knights will have to accomplish that feat with only two seniors, Leah Greene and Audrey Reid. Greene, a three-time All-SUNYAC selection, scored two goals and dished off an assist last season on her way to a first-team all-conference selection. Reid tallied three goals and two assists and returns as the team's top scorer from last season. Sophomore defender Taylor Clar and junior goalkeeper Emily Janiszewski also return after both being named SUNYAC all-stars in 2016.
The Knights lost nine members of the team to graduation last season, including five regular starters. Wiley will look to a large first-year class to replace that talent as well as sophomore transfer Sara Pedroza. Pedroza comes to Geneseo from NCAA Division I Hartford University, but did not see action in her first year with the Hawks. First-years Kara Beamish, Raegan Becker, Kaitlin Connolly, Ellie Gregory, Morgan Keppler, Juliana Kuryla, Julia McDonald and Julia Ophals will join the ranks as well, adding depth to the Knights' roster.
Geneseo opens its schedule with road games against St. Lawrence and Clarkson before returning to College Stadium for the home opener against Nazareth on Thursday, Sept. 7. The Knights will open their conference schedule with a rematch of last season's SUNYAC Championship game, traveling to Buffalo State to take on the Bengals on Friday, Sept. 22. The squad hosts Cortland and Oswego on Friday, Oct. 13 and Saturday, Oct. 14, respectively before closing the regular season with three straight road contests.