Rehearsal is over for the spring as our Leopards will journey to Conshohocken, Pa and the ” Proving Grounds” to meet the Wildcats of Villanova at noon on Saturday . This part of the year is when we get to see who will fill the gaps left by the seniors. It is a time of testing and experimentation by coach and players alike. There are obvious questions to be answered. How is the overall team speed look with the absence of Ellen Colbourne in the lineup? Where will the scoring come from ? Will there be players moved to different positions now that many have that additional year of experience?
Looking at last year’s results the Leopards will look to improve on their 2-4 finish in the league. Especially grating was the overtime loss to Lehigh 1-0. Lehigh will travel to Lafayette this year as the Leopards look for revenge. A win would have put the Leopards in the league playoffs. Likewise they will be looking to reverse 3 years of losses to Holy Cross. Boston University is always tough but will have to contend with a Lafayette home field as will American University. A trip to Colgate is always tough especially later in the year.
The Leopards finished with 30 goals ( five more than last year) with 19 of those goals scored by returning players. They will need more offense, as the top two teams, Boston and American scored 67 and 62 goals respectively while giving up 37 and 31 goals at the same time. Lafayette gave up 46. Goal tending was about the same as all three had a mid 60 pct save percentage.
Lafayette generated 47 corners in league games, and led the league in that category. Lafayette’s in league performance must improve as they scored only 7 goals and gave up 15 in the conference. Boston was 25/5, American was 19/7, Holy Cross 17/15,Bucknell was 10/8, Colgate 6/21 and Lehigh 4/18.
Villanova returns many starters with three of their sophomores having scored 18 of their 34 goals. They are losing one of their best scorers Francesca Bello who scored 8 goals last season. Their top scorers are sophs Lydia Sydney, Amy Siana and Megan Vermeil each with 6 goals.
At this writing the format is undisclosed and I would imagine it’ll be three abbreviated periods with perhaps a shoot out at the end. The “Proving Grounds” is about 10 miles for from the Villanova Campus. The GPS address is 725 Conshohocken Rd. Conshohocken,Pa 19428.