Monday, August 19th, 2019 -- A lot can change in a few years and the Benedictine University Women's Soccer Team is hoping you take notice.
The program is just in its third year of existence, but it already has shown an improvement in wins in back-to-back seasons and they now have their own four field facility.
With a strong core of returning players, the Benedictine University Women's Soccer Team is vying for yet another season improvement.
The Arizona Soccer Association (ASA) had a chance to talk to Tim Marchisotto, Head Coach of the Benedictine University Women's Soccer Team, about the upcoming season.
ASA: Talk About the expectations for the season...
MARCHISOTTO: "We finished 3rd in the conference last year in only our second year of the programs history and went to the conference playoffs. We had 5 All-Conference players with Jackie Igulu also being an All-American. So, the expectations are high for us. We are ranked 3rd in the 1st conference pre-season poll. We are returning two 1st team ALL-Conference players in Defender Sabrina Willis and M/F Jackie Igulu. With the new players that are coming in, we feel that we have more depth than last year and can make a deeper run in the playoffs and challenge for a conference title. We have a good combination of freshman and transfers that have come in. Serena Lopez a freshman from Tucson will play valuable minutes for us and returning sophomores Bella Glavin and Maddie Medina will no doubt play a critical role for us."
ASA: Talk about your upperclassmen players and what they bring to your team...
MARCHISOTTO: "We have some great leadership both on and off the field in Sr’s defenders Bailey Pederson and Cynthia Portugal who are our captains. In addition, Jr. Nicole Slade and Sr. Alaniz Salas have put in some really great work over this summer to get ready and they will no doubt be leading our team up top. We added midfielders Brianna Duran from College of Southern Nevada & Jazmin Martinez from Glendale Community College. GK Veronika Castillo comes in from from San Diego City College to add to our experienced GK core with our returning Jr. GK Lydia Rankin. Lastly, Jr. Victoria Zaragoza has been the most consistent player in pre-season so far. She is reminding me a lot of how Tobin Heath plays. I expect big things from here this season."
ASA: Talk about the new facility and how it will help your program...
MARCHISOTTO: "We always talk about culture and the player experience in college sports. Having Eagles Park, allows our program to build on these two things. We scheduled a lot of home games this year to really cement our new home as a tough place to come in and play and for people to want to come see a local college team at a nice venue. The City of Mesa is a terrific partner for Benedictine University and they have done a great job with this facility. We are in the process of adding small sets of bleachers, wind screens, new benches, etc. to the field. I think it will be a nice intimate place to come watch some great local talent play."