The College of Southern Maryland (CSM) Hawks women’s soccer team opens its 2019 season today, Friday, Aug. 30, when the team takes on the Union County College Owls in La Plata.
Sophomore Karleigh Cohen is back for the Hawks, and Head Coach Nina Duron said she is looking to Cohen having another productive season after she accounted for six of CSM’s 16 goals last year.
“I expect more from her,” Duron said. “This year, she definitely has a stronger support system than she did last year.”
Part of that support system will be CSM’s midfield, which Duron said she anticipates being a particular area of strength on this team. “I’m really looking forward to seeing it in action,” Duron said.
There is also more experience on this team compared to last year’s, as there was only one sophomore on the 2018 roster.
“We definitely have a lot more sophomores this year than freshman,” Duron said. “I think we will still offer a good balance. We have some coming in who have already played a year in the past or somewhere else. With the way the program is going and recruiting is going, it’ll shake out pretty good.”
Cohen will be joined by returnee Semiya Lowe and transfer Lila Biggar as the team’s captains. Biggar, a graduate of Patuxent High School, redshirted last year at Brewton-Parker College in Georgia.
CSM finished eighth in the MD JUCO and Region XX standings. Duron said she could not be more ready to start the 2019 season on a positive note.
“We’ve taken steps to really change the culture of the program and do some more team bonding, really get these girls meshed in together so they can play hard and not give up,” Duron said. “That was a big struggle for us last year. Mentally, when we had tough challenges, we seemed to break down. So being able to overcome those kinds of challenges as a team and work through them, that’ll make a huge impact on our game. One thing I’ve been pretty repetitive with them is in asking them, ‘What’s the best play?’ The answer is, ‘The next play.’ So we’re always being prepared, we know what’s going to happen next.”
With a revamped roster and an unblemished schedule to work with, Duron said there are “definitely positive thoughts and feelings about how the season’s going to go.”
To view the CSM Women’s Soccer schedule, visit http://athletics.csmd.edu/sports/wsoc/2019-20/schedule.