WEST BABYLON, N.Y. – The Queens College women's soccer team was chosen sixth in the East Coast Conference (ECC) Women's Soccer Preseason Poll on Friday. The Knights totaled 29 points in the poll, as voted upon by the conference's head coaches.
Two-time defending ECC Champion Bridgeport, which enters the season ranked seventh in the country, took the first spot with 75 points and six first-place votes. LIU Post, the No. 18 ranked team in the nation, was close behind in second with 72 points and two votes for first. Mercy claimed the final first-place vote and came in at No. 3, while Roberts Wesleyan and Molloy rounded out the top five. Making up the rest of the field after Queens was NYIT, Daemen and St. Thomas Aquinas.
In head coach Nicole Pacapelli's first season at the helm one year ago, the Knights finished 4-12-1 overall and 1-6-1 in the ECC. Queens had much more success at home, going 4-5-1 when playing on the QC Soccer Field. The Knights' goalkeepers were ranked second in the ECC with 120 saves on the year, while the defense posted two shutouts.
This season, the Knights are loaded with experienced players with nine seniors on the roster. In addition to the team's abundance of returnees, Queens also nearly doubled its roster size with a multitude of newcomers as well. Among the Knights' returning seniors are forward Erin Vernillo and goalie Nicole Cranny, both of whom were All-ECC performers last season. Queens brings back its top five scorers from a season ago in Vernillo, fellow seniors Haley Gibbons and Taylor Bonanno, junior Adriana Mendrinos and sophomore Brooke Delano.
The Knights open their season on Thursday, Aug. 31, at Holy Family at 4 p.m. Queens opens its home schedule against Georgian Court on Tuesday, Sept. 12, at 4 p.m., followed by the ECC opener against Molloy at home on Saturday, Sept. 16, at 12 p.m.