Fall Sports Look to Set a Winning Tone


The Raiders football dynasty has established itself as a force to be reckoned with throughout its performances in the Patriot League over the past decade. Winning titles in 1997, 1999, 2002, 2003 and 2005 under the regime of Head Coach Dick Biddle, Colgate has become a respected and powerful contender in collegiate football. In fact, the Raiders were the first non-scholarship institution ever to make an appearance in the NCAA Division I-AA title game. It is also noteworthy that with Biddle at the helm, Colgate has achieved a record nine consecutive seasons with seven or more wins (1997-2005).

However, Colgate experienced its first losing season in recent memory last year. With a disappointing record of four wins and seven losses, the 2006 Raiders did not resemble the team fans have become accustomed to rooting for. With a fresh start this upcoming year; the Raiders will look to rise above last year’s disappointing season. Though the prospect of delivering a winning record directly after a losing year may seem overly optimistic, one must remember that Biddle achieved such a feat during his first year as head coach in the 1996 season.

“The team is looking good,” first-year backup Quarterback Greg Sullivan said. “There are a lot of big names returning – [senior] Mike Gallihugh, [junior] Jordan Scott and our starting quarterback [junior] Alex Relph. There were about 30 of us up here all summer lifting and working out. We’re definitely prepared.”

Colgate opens its season at home against Albany on September 1st.


The arrival of Head Coach Ryan Baker in July 2006 brought fresh blood and new ideas to the women’s volleyball team. The season turned out to be the best since 1999 and the squad won 14 of its 29 matches tournaments and finished fifth in the Patriot League. Everybody loved Colgate’s offense last year, but a libero collected the biggest prize of the season. Jackie Adlam, a sophomore at the time, was named Patriot League Defensive Player of the Year.

The forthcoming season promises to be even more successful than the last one. Most of the leaders are still here, and Baker has already announced the names of five first-years who will hopefully even overshadow their predecessors. He has also hired a new assistant, Cristina Pintilie. Her unending passion for the game and great high-level playing experience are bound to bring confidence and spirit. In the poll of Patriot League coaches and officials, the Colgate Raiders are picked to take fourth position, which is undeniable proof of their growing respect for and recognition of the team’s progress.

Colgate will host the annual Colgate Classic at Cotterell Court starting tomorrow at 7p.m. The first match is against New Hampshire and the fans are expected to crowd the hall.

Men’s Soccer

Disappointment can often lead to future success for those who persevere. That would seem to be the case for men’s soccer team heading into this year. After falling 2-1 in last season’s Patriot League Tournament semifinals to Lafayette, the Raiders look more prepared than ever to dominate the opposition.

Having graduated a solid senior class that included First-Team All-Patriot League midfielder Eli Meyers, the Raiders are optimistic that a mixture of youth and experience can compensate for his loss and even bring them closer to a Patriot League crown.

“We have a great incoming class that should contribute a lot while our returning veterans are all hungry to build on last year’s progress,” senior midfielder Mike Parshley remarked.

Those veterans include two First-Team All-Patriot League selections: senior defender Dan Belke and junior goalkeeper David Cappuccio. Also among the notable vets is Colgate’s leading scorer, senior forward Eric Anton, who was named to the National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA) All-Region Second Team. Belke, who was named team Captain last spring for the 2007 season, leads a defense that was among the best in the nation last year, producing shutouts in their first six matches. Head Coach Erik Ronning, a former Colgate player who is known around the league as a defensive mastermind, has made sure that defense is the focal point. The results were obvious last season with Cappuccio winning Patriot League Goalkeeper of the Year honors. Meanwhile, the offense should be spearheaded by Anton, who is considered by many to be one of the most physically talented players in the league.

Without a doubt, the Raiders are set to improve upon a season which saw them achieve a national ranking and a number three seed in the Patriot League tournament. With a combination of athleticism, fundamentals and heart, Colgate has the look of a winner heading into their 2007 season.

Colgate’s first match is at Northwestern on August 31st.

Women’s Soccer

The women’s soccer team has one goal in mind this year: a Patriot League Championship. After an excellent season in which the Raiders made it all the way to the PL Championship Game and finished ninth in the Northeast Regional Poll, the Raiders will look to reach the next level of success. Their exciting 2006 campaign may have peaked when the team defeated top-ranked Bucknell in the PL semifinals in a hard-fought 2-1 game. Last season was also marked by many individual honors, including senior Franny Iacuzzi and sophomore Jessica Bitsack being named to the Soccerbuzz.com All-Region Team and Bitsack receiving Patriot League Rookie of the Year honors.

Indeed, 2007 seems promising for the Raiders, who will be led by senior co-captains Carly Sousa, Kathleen Head and Iacuzzi. Sousa will look to cement her place as one of the Patriot League’s top goalkeepers, while Head will anchor the defense and the explosive forward Iacuzzi will lead up front. Colgate will also look for sophomores Jillian Arnualt and Bitsack to produce offensively, as they were the second and third leading scorers on the team last year, respectively. All in all, the Raiders seem poised for a great season, and be sure to catch their nationally televised game against Iona on September 13th at Van Doren Field.

Cross Country

For both the men’s and women’s cross-country teams, last year was a time of great performances and outstanding senior leadership. On the men’s side, Colgate was led by NCAA Championship qualifier and Patriot League runner-up Mike Hanlon. The women’s team was also led by its senior class. Meaghan McAnaney, Liz Crowley, and Hannah Failing helped sophomore Kristen Kiraly give the Raiders a third-place finish at the Patriot League Championships and first-place at the ECAC Championships held at Van Cortlandt Park. Unfortunately, the loss of these seniors puts both teams in somewhat of a rebuilding phase. However, both squads are very excited about their returning members and first-year recruits.

“After two days of cross-country camp, the guys have already exceeded my expectations,” men’s Head Coach Art McKinnon said. “I think we are going to surprise a lot of folks in the Patriot League this season.”

The men’s team will feature seven first-year runners this season, one of the deepest incoming groups in recent years. The women’s team will look to senior Elizabeth Kennedy and junior captains Jessica Kielty and Kristen Kiraly to improve on last year’s Patriot League Championship performances that left them only two points out of second place.

“We are in a little bit of a rebuilding year, but we also have some very strong returning runners,” women’s Head Coach Laura Nardelli said. “Our freshman class is also extremely talented and we are very excited about them.”

Field Hockey

Despite a rather disappointing season, Colgate Raiders disproved the clich?e that all sportsmen and sportswomen have a low intelligence level. Colgate was one of only 57 schools to be awarded a National Academic Team Award, given to teams that achieved a grade point average of 3.0 or higher.

The field hockey squad finished the season with four wins and twelve losses, but won the last two home matches against tough rivals Cornell and Lehigh. Goalkeeper Jacque DeMarco, who made 148 saves for the season, kept the team in games during the season and helped them finish them year on a high note. She graduated last year and has twice been named Patriot League Goalkeeper of the Year.

The 2007 season promises to be very exciting since there are five first-years coming to support the team. It will be interesting to see first-year Rebecca Anderson and sophomore sister Mary Charles Anderson on the field at the same time. Also, the squad will also be joined by their first-ever Native African player, Eunice Denenga, who hails from Zimbabwe.

The Raider’s first challenge will be a home match against Syracuse at noon on Saturday at Tyler’s Field. Colgate lost its previous meeting with the Orange 2-0 last October.