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October 26, 2012
Vol. 54 No. 7

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Soccer seniors honored for their contributions

Brandon Kates
BRANDON KATES
Tara Brancato
TARA BRANCATO
Every senior athlete cherishes each minute of their final go-round in their respective sport as the season comes to a close.

For the seniors on the men's soccer team, their final season wearing the Crusaders uniform has been going relatively well by normal standards, consisting of a new record after surpassing the previously held one, in addition to a berth in the Landmark Conference postseason in the near future.

This past Tuesday, they beat Kings for their fourteenth win of the season, surpassing the previous mark of 13 wins set by the 2008 team.

As the final game of the season draws near, they also have a chance to earn a home game for the playoffs.

"They've stepped up and done everything that's been asked and more. They deserve everything they're getting in this season and now they have a real opportunity in front of them to win another conference championship for our program," coach Jim Findlay said.

The last time Susquehanna won the Landmark Conference crown was when the 2008 team clinched it, a season in which the Crusaders went 13-7-1, advancing to the first round of the NCAA Division III Championships where they fell 1-0 to Ohio Wesleyan.

The seniors on the 2012 men's team are goalkeepers Thomas Walsh, Pat Horan, Matt Salsman; defenders Sam Meister, Sean Raffetto, Zach Ziegler, and Brandon Kates; midfielders Daniel Sosa and John Arnold.

"They all bring something special to the team," Findlay said.

Meister said he has enjoyed playing good soccer and having fun at the same time while playing for Susquehanna. "You can't play good soccer unless you're having fun, and when you're having fun you're enjoying the game, and you see that with our team. It's great, I love it," he said.

Regarding his decision to come to Susquehanna, he said he doesn't "regret that decision at all."

The women have battled to a 4-8-2 record this year with the Crusaders 2-1 victory over Lycoming on Sept. 6 being a highlight according to junior defender Angela Amato.

"That was a huge moment for us," Amato said. "It captured the essence of what our team does."

The Crusaders rallied for a win over the Warriors, scoring two goals in the final three minutes after trailing late.

The Crusaders started the season 3-0 with wins over Cabrini, Kings and Lycoming. A large reason for the Crusaders' fast start to the season and their close games throughout the year has been senior defender Tara Brancato.

Brancato has been a key component of the Crusaders defense over her four years.

"Tara has had probably the biggest impact on my career here," Amato said. "It's been nice to have someone older really give me direction on the field."

Kelly Bassett has provided a spark in the middle of the field for the Crusaders from her midfielder position.

In a game against Drew on Sept. 22, Bassett assisted on two first-half goals that proved to be key in a game that ended in a 3-3 tie.

Senior midfielders Megan Stevens, Leah Gardiner and Lindsay Robbins have all found significant playing time to help the Crusaders win, while Brianna Soars has seen a role increase over her last two seasons.

Regardless of the way that this season ends for Susquehanna soccer, the graduating seniors have the determination to find success off of the pitch.

SPORTS HEADLINES

Crusaders continue hot streak in shutout wins

Soccer seniors honored for their contributions

Football fumbles away victory

Crusaders excited for returners and recruits

Crusaders blank Lions on senior night

Crusaders sweep Gophers in season opener

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