The state of BU athletic teams heading into 2018-19 year

By: Greg Levinsky

The start of August means the newest season of college athletics is right around the corner. Boston University fall sports such as field hockey and soccer are nearing regular season game play and Terrier student-athletes are soon to report to campus. Like every year, a fresh crop of newcomers join and seniors leave, and it’s necessary for a proper examination of each team WTBU Sports covers.

Fall Sports:

Field Hockey –

2017 season-in-review: Not only did the Terriers have an undefeated Patriot League regular season record, but head coach Sally Starr and her squad captured their second conference title in three years. Ranked 20th in the nation in both the RPI and NFCHA Coaches Poll to close the year, they amassed a 14-8 record, 6-0 in the Patriot League. They took an NCAA Tournament game at home before falling 3-1 in a tightly contested contest at eventual national champion Connecticut.

Junior midfielder Kiley Gallagher earned All-Patriot League Second Team honors as a sophomore.

2018 top returners and expectations: Senior Ally Hammel is one of the top players in the nation. The 2018 Patriot League Defensive Player of the Year and Duxbury Mass., native participated in multiple U.S. Development Team camps and international friendlies throughout the offseason. Sophomore Kathryn Scheerer and graduate student Jordyn Beesmer join Hammel on the defensive corps once again. Goalies Millie Baker and Kathleen Keegan split time last fall, and are joined by newcomer Livy Golini. Baker is a sophomore, Golini a junior, and Keegan a senior. Leading goal scorer Ailsa Connolly returns after 11 goals in her freshman campaign. Senior Kara Enoch along with sophomores Miya Denison and Petra Hall are multi-goal per game threats. Allie Doggett, Maggie New, Kiley Gallagher, and Maika Akroyd make up a solid midfield. There’s no reason the Terriers shouldn’t be jockeying for another conference title.

Women’s Soccer –

2017 season-in-review: They went 10-8-3 last season, but dominated with a 6-2-1 mark in conference play. The Terriers lost in the Patriot League semifinals. Anna Heilferty had a remarkable freshman campaign, notching up 2017 Patriot League Rookie of the Year honors after posting five goals and three assists. Then-graduate student Rachel Bloznalis earned the Patriot League Defender of the Year, and graduated senior Christina Wakefield tied Heilferty in her final campaign with 13 total points.

2018 top returners and expectations: Heilferty leads a young, yet experienced group. Goalkeeper Amanda Fay started 14 games as a freshman and allowed less than one goal per game. Starters McKenna Doyle, Dorrie Varley-Barrett, Julianna Chen, Shannon Keefe, Libby Closson and Pietra Sweeney all return to coach Nancy Feldman’s squad that should compete at a high level.

Men’s Soccer –

2017 season-in-review: The squad turned a 6-2-1 mark in conference play despite a 7-8-4 overall mark. The top five goal scorers were underclassmen, paced by four goals by current junior Matt McDonnell. They started 0-5-1, but finished with a 7-3-3 record over the last 13 contests before falling in a penalty kick shootout in the conference semifinals.

2018 top returners and expectations: Highly regarded sophomores Peter Kargboh and Toti Knutsson earned All-Conference honors and look to build off high-usage freshman campaigns. 11 regular starters are back, and Neil Roberts’ team will be at the top of the conference in his 34th season at the helm.

Winter Sports:

Men’s Basketball –

2017-18 season-in-review: A season full of ups and downs, the Terriers defeated eventual conference champ Bucknell on the road. They challenged NCAA power Miami on the road, but finished with a 15-16 (10-8 PL) mark. Junior Max Mahoney emerged as one of the top post players in the Patriot League, and Cedric Hankerson ended his career with a 12.9 points per game clip, including a 33 point outburst in the conference opener.

Max Mahoney took a massive step as a sophomore.

2018-19 top returners and expectations: Four starters; Mahoney, Tyler Scanlon, Walter Whyte and Javante McCoy return for their sophomore and junior seasons respectively. Transfer Alex Vilarino is eligible after joining the team at the semester break, and has the potential to break into the starting lineup. With just one senior on the roster, the Terriers should be solid this year, but even better next. Jack Hemphill and Jordan Guest are talented freshman bigs and should see a lot of growth.

Women’s Basketball –

2017-18 season-in-review: In the last year of Katy Steding’s tenure, the Terriers collected a 10-19 (5-13 PL) overall mark. They started 5-2 in non-conference play, but struggled to find consistency with many players shuffling in and out of the rotation. However, all of the returners showed glimpses of promise a season ago.

2018-19 top returners and expectations: The biggest addition to the women’s basketball program is a new coaching staff. 2004 graduate Marisa Moseley was named Steding’s replacement and her brand new staff take a team with a mix of returners and freshman. Junior Nia Irving comes off Patriot League second-team honors and sophomore Katie Nelson was a top rookie. It should be an exciting bounce-back year.

Women’s Ice Hockey –

2017-18 season-in-review: Now graduated Victoria Bach turned in one of the finest individual performances in any sport, collecting 39 goals and 28 assists in 33 games. They went 14-17-6 (8-11-5 HEA) and fell to Maine in the quarterfinals. Corrine Schroeder took the goalie reigns as a freshman and performed well with a strong defense in front of her with junior Abby Cook.

Victoria Bach ended her illustrious career last season.

2018-19 top returners and expectations: The offense graduated a lot, but Schroeder, Cook, Alexandra Calderone and Bre Scarpaci anchor a strong blue-line. It’s a relatively even split of returners and newcomers, so the Terriers will likely finish around the same spot in the conference.

Men’s Ice Hockey –

2017-18 season-in-review: A late surge earned them a spot in the NCAA Northeast Regional, as the Terriers collected the 2018 Hockey East Title with a 2-0 win over then-ninth ranked Providence. David Quinn moved on to the New York Rangers after the season, and assistant Albie O’Connell took the reigns.

2018-19 top returners and expectations: Sophomores Brady Tkachuk and Shane Bowers are offensive weapons, and senior Bobo Carpenter comes off a 20 goal, 15 assist outburst in his junior season. Goalie Jake Oettinger returns for his junior season. Captain Dante Fabbro is a top blue liner himself, and the team is tremendously talented again.

Spring Sports:

Softball –

2018 season-in-review: Patriot League regular season and tournament champs, the squad earned a win over then-first ranked Oklahoma in the early going. BU swept all five of the postseason awards in an incredible season.

Softball took home the 2018 Patriot League title.

2019 top returners and expectations: Reigning Patriot League Player of the Year Alex Heinen and Pitcher of the Year Ali DuBois return as the battery. Senior Madi Killebrew is a power hitting third baseman, and classmate Emily Morrow is a dynamic middle infielder. A senior laden team offensively, all five pitchers return with at least another year of eligibility beyond 2019. This is a team built for the present and the future.

Men’s Lacrosse –

2018 season-in-review: Freshman Chris Gray was unbelievable, earning Patriot League Rookie of the Year behind a 31 goal, 40 assist performance. The team went 8-9 (3-5 PL), but pulled an upset over 10th ranked Bucknell in the conference tournament.

2019 top returners and expectations: Gray will carry a lot on his shoulders, but junior John MacLean and senior James Burr will be offensive assets. Goalie Joe McSorley will be a junior, and the Terriers are in good position to at least match, if not better last year’s overall mark.

Women’s Lacrosse –

2018 season-in-review: Yet another team with a solid young core, Kailey Conry’s 27 goals and 43 assists boosted BU to a 10-8 (5-4 PL) mark. Now graduated Avery Donahoe broke out with 36 goals in 13 games. BU started out 2-5, but turned an 8-3 mark over the last couple months of the spring.

Kelly Matthews enters her senior year.

2019 top returners and expectations: Conry is a junior, and sophomore Ava Barry is set to build off a 27 goal, nine assist performance in her inaugural season. The Terriers return six of their eight 10-plus goal scorers.

Women’s soccer kicks off the 2018-2019 academic and  athletic year with a contest at the University of Michigan on Thursday, August 16th at 7:30 p.m.

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