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The Daily Journal

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SPORTS

Wednesday, September 7, 2011 – C3

PLAYERS TO WATCH
Fliecea Kuzniasz
Vineland
YEAR: Senior POS: Goalie THE SKINNY: Skills have vastly improved with experience, leader of the Clan defense.

Millville ready to make some noise; Schalick, Buena primed for big years
By TOM McGURK Staff Writer tmcgurk@thedailyjournal.com

2011 FIELD HOCKEY SCHEDULES Vineland
September 9 Hammonton 3:30pm 13 Egg Harbor Twp. 3:30pm 15 at Ocean City 4pm 19 at Mainland 4pm 21 Highland 4pm 23 Absegami 3:30pm 27 Oakcrest 3:30pm 29 at Millville 4pm October 3 at Atlantic City 4pm 5 at Hammomton 4pm 7 at Egg Harbor Twp. 4pm 11 Ocean City 3:30pm 13 Mainland 3:30pm 14 Buena 3:30pm 17 at Timber Creek 4pm 19 at Absegami 3:30pm 21 at Oakcrest 4pm 24 Millville 3:30pm 26 Atlantic City 3:30pm 26 Woodstown 4pm 28 at Cumberland 4pm 30 Buena 4pm October 3 Highland 4pm 5` at Williamstown 4pm 11 Kingsway 4pm 13 at Clearview 4pm 18 Salem 4pm 19 at Schalick 4pm 21 at Gloucester Catholic 4pm 24 at Glassboro 4pm 25 Gloucester Co. Tech 4pm

Angela Jackson
Millville
YEAR: Senior POS: Forward THE SKINNY: Speedster has added scoring punch to T-Bolt front line; 12 goals in 2010.

A closer look at the local high school field hockey teams in the greater Cumberland County area:

VINELAND
COACH: Kate Cronk (8th season, 11-116-6) CONFERENCE: Cape-Atlantic League American Conference GROUP: IV South LAST YEAR: 2-14-2, missed playoffs RETURNING STARTERS: 2. KEY PLAYERS: Fliecea Kuzniasz (Sr., G), Sasha Ostapenko (So., RM), Alisa Perez (Sr., B), Julie Filluzzi (Sr., F), Katie Couch (Sr., M). TOP NEWCOMERS: Riley Guinan (So., LM), Rosalyn Rivera (So., CF), Bryanna Luciano (Fr., RF). OUTLOOK: After graduating a large senior class, the Fighting Clan will look to a strong group of underclassmen to help build the team. Vineland welcomes 16 freshmen to the program, a nice rebound after the team didn’t have a single freshman sign up two years ago. Kuzniasz continues to grow at the goalie position, strengthening her skills and confidence since last fall. However, Vineland must find a way to put the ball in the cage. The team struggled on offense at times last season, scoring just 21 goals and were blanked six times. Making things even more difficult, the Clan don’t have a single returning player who dented the scoring column last year. PREDICTION: The Fighting Clan have taken small steps over the last few years at building their program up. The win total might not see a significant jump this season, but look for the building process to make some serious strides with the program’s younger talent. The team has recorded one three-win season in the last seven years, if they could reach that goal, it would be a nice accomplishment.

Schalick
September 9 Pennsville 4pm 10 at Haddon Heights 10am 12 at Salem 4pm 14 Gloucester 4pm 16 at Pitman 4pm 19 Clayton 4pm 21 at Gloucester Catholic 4pm 23 Clearview 4pm 29 at Deptford 4pm October 3 at Pennsville 4pm 5 Salem 4pm 7 at Gloucester 4pm 11 Pitman 4pm 13 at Clayton 4pm 14 at Cumberland 4pm 17 Woodstown 4pm 19 Delsea 4pm 26 Glassboro 4pm

Millville
September 9 Delsea 4pm 13 Oakcrest 4pm 15 at Atlantic City 4pm 16 Middle Twp. 4pm 19 Ocean City 4pm 21 at Egg Harbor Twp. 4pm 23 Hammonton 4pm 27 Mainland 4pm 29 Vineland 4pm October 3 Absegami 4pm 7 at Oakcrest 4pm 11 Atlantic City 4pm 13 at Ocean City 4pm 17 Egg Harbor Twp. 4pm 19 at Hammonton 4pm 21 at Mainland 4pm 24 at Vineland 3:30pm 26 at Absegami 3:30pm 28 at Cumberland 3:30pm

Molly Nichols
Buena
YEAR: Senior POS: Forward THE SKINNY: Has the ability to become one of the area’s top scorers this season.

Brittney Carney
Delsea
YEAR: Senior POS: Forward THE SKINNY: This bundle of energy combines superior stick and leadership skills.

Bridgeton
September 9 St. Joseph 4pm 12 Winslow Township 4pm 13 Buena 4pm 15 Holy Spirit 4pm 19 Cedar Creek 4pm 27 at Middle Township 4pm 30 at Egg Harbor Twp. 4pm October 3 Lower Cape May 4pm 5 at St. Joseph 4pm 6 at Buena 4pm 11 at Holy Spirit 4pm 13 Cedar Creek 4pm 19 at Glassboro 4pm 21 Middle Township 4pm 31 at Vineland 3:30pm

Staff photo/Cody Glenn

Millville’s Corrine Etter makes her way to the goal during a game with Vineland last fall. Etter emerged as one of the top scorers in the Cape-Atlantic League in 2010 with a team-high 17 goals. cio, the 2010 Daily Journal Player of the Year. However, the Chiefs think they might have the formula. With more snipers up front, the team believes balance could deliver the same type of goal totals. Nichols, Sturts and Giannascoli combined for 24 goals and 15 assists last season. The defense, anchored by Surran and Heath along with a nice group of newcomers, should be able to keep up its end of the bargin. PREDICTION: The Chiefs boast a nice blend of athletic and experienced players that might be able to catch some teams off guard. A double-digit win total is certainly within reach and don’t be surprised if two of those victories come against CAL National I frontrunners Middle Township and Lower Cape May.

Joyce Perry
Schalick
YEAR: Senior POS: Forward THE SKINNY: Speed and ability to score resulted in 56 goals over the last two seasons.

Devon Springsteadah
Millville
YEAR: Senior POS: Halfback THE SKINNY: Strong defender and big hitter; also provides leadership for the T-Bolts.

MILLVILLE
COACH: Claudia McCarthy (41st season, 497-170-111) CONFERENCE: Cape-Atlantic League American Conference GROUP: IV South LAST YEAR: 11-9, lost in second round of playoffs RETURNING STARTERS: 9. KEY PLAYERS: Corrine Etter (So., M), Casey Derella (Jr., M), Angela Jackson (Sr., F), Felicia Branagan (Sr., LHB), Devon Springsteadah (Sr., CHB), Taylor Arendarczyk (Sr., Ut.), Miranda DelVicario (Sr,. M/F), Sarah Gallo (Sr., M/F), Kerry Lamanteer (Sr., Swp.), Laura Lokey (Sr., B), Carly Mease (Sr., M/F), Brandi Nessen (Sr., B), Melina Rosario (Sr., B) TOP NEWCOMERS: Lauren Robinson (Sr., G), Breann Swan (Jr., M), Megan Hoffman (So., F). OUTLOOK: With nine returning starters back, Millville could be in position for one of its best seasons in recent memory and primed to make some serious noise in both the conference and postseason. The front line boasts plenty of firepower with Etter (17 goals), Jackson (12) and Derella (8). The defense got stronger as the season progressed last fall and will have two of its leaders in Lamanteer and Springsteadah back. However, the team was dealt a serious blow over the summer when senior Tara Spears, a threeyear starter at goalie suffered a season-ending knee injury. PREDICTION: The Spears injury is a tough loss, but this group has shown it can thrive on adversity in the past. The team definitely should be able to turn around its luck in close games. After losing six one-goal games last season, look for the team to buck that trend in 2011. Millville is eyeing a 15-plus-win season, which would include McCarthy’s No. 500 milestone victory.

KEY GAMES
➤ Delsea at Millville, Friday, 4 p.m. Two of the top local teams go to battle in an earlyseason showdown. This will be a quality test for both squads. ➤ Ocean City at Millville, Sept. 19, 4 p.m. Can the Thunderbolts pull off the upset? Played the Red Raiders to a 21 defeat in last meeting of 2010. ➤ Vineland at Millville, Sept. 29, 4 p.m. After splitting the season series in 2009, the Thunderbolts provided a sweep last fall by a combined 7-2 score. The Clan showed improvement in the second meeting, dropping a 2-1 decision. The rematch will be at Vineland on Oct. 24 at 3:30 p.m. ➤ Buena at Vineland, Oct. 14, 3:30 p.m. Interested rivalry has built over the last couple of years. The Chiefs rolled to a 41 victory in last year’s meeting. ➤ Delsea at Schalick, Oct. 19, 4 p.m. Last year’s showdown produced The Daily Journal’s Game of the Year as the No. 1 Cougars defeated the No. 2 Crusaders 2-1. Will there be an encore?

GROUP: III South Buena LAST YEAR: 4-10-1, missed play- September offs 9 Cedar Creek 4pm RETURNING STARTERS: 3. 10 Pinelands 10 am KEY PLAYERS: Lindsey Anderson 13 at Bridgeton 4pm (Sr., LM), Tiffany Schweitzer (Sr., 15 St. Joseph 4pm RI), Alyssa Anderson (So., CM). 23 Lower Cape May 4pm TOP NEWCOMERS: Renee Shep- 26 at Pennsville 4pm pard (Sr., RM), Erin Manski (Sr., B), 27 Glassboro 4pm Kaitlyn Williams (So., M/B). 29 Middle Township 4pm OUTLOOK: While the Colts don’t 30 at Delsea 4pm possess a great deal of experi- October ence, the team is overflowing with 3 at Holy Spirit 4pm potential and appears to be primed 5 at Cedar Creek 4pm to build off last year’s four-win 6 Bridgeton 4pm season. Cumberland is developing 11 at St. Joseph 4pm a much better passing game, 14 at Vineland 3:30pm which should result in more and 19 Lower Cape May 4pm better scoring opportunites. The 20 Gloucester Co. Tech 4pm team struggled at times to hit the 24 at Middle Township 4pm back of the cage, scoring three-or- 26 Holy Spirit 4pm more goals in just four games. PREDICTION: Rebuilding is always difficult in the rough-and-tumble Delsea BRIDGETON Tri-County Royal Division and Cum- September COACH: Dannon Mehaffey (2nd berland will likely endure some 8 at Highland 4pm season, 3-13) at Millville 4pm growing pains again this season. 9 CONFERENCE: Cape-Atlantic However, Meyers is hopeful that the 12 Williamstown 4pm League National Conference 4pm cornerstones of this building project 14 Cumberland GROUP: II South 4pm were set last season and the true 16 at Kingsway LAST YEAR: 3-13, missed playoffs growth of the program will show 19 Clearview 4pm RETURNING STARTERS: 8. 4pm results beginning this season. Don’t 23 at Gloucester KEY PLAYERS: Jade Kemp (Sr., B), be surprised if Cumberland chalTatianna Nock (Sr., B), Simone lenges the .500 mark. will need to rely heavily upon their Jones (Jr., G), Jacole Burke (Sr., defenders again. Delsea will also M/B), Niche Watford (Sr., M), ShakDELSEA REGIONAL look to outwork and outhustle its eria Byrd (Sr., M), Mariah Lopez opponents this fall. Carney will look (Sr., F), Shaquana Broughton (Sr., COACH: Meg Unger (24th season, to anchor the front line. The senior F), Nicole Miletta (Jr., M), Jaygia 179-132-59) can be a go-to scorer, but she will Kemp (So., F). CONFERENCE: Tri-County need help. TOP NEWCOMERS: Claudia Hause Conference Royal Division PREDICTION: If Delsea can produce (So., M). GROUP: III South scoring on a consistent basis, the OUTLOOK: The Bulldogs made sig- LAST YEAR: 10-9-2, lost in first team should be able to crack dounificant strides last season, post- round of playoffs ble-digits in victories. The defense ing its highest win total in over five RETURNING STARTERS: 7. will keep the Crusaders in most years. They scored 18 goals, 15 KEY PLAYERS: Brittney Carney games, a tough chore in the highly more than the previous year, and (Sr., F), Lisa Clark (Sr., M), Molly competitive Royal Division. got a much-needed boost of confi- McGuire (Sr., M), Sarah Senula (Sr., dence under Mehaffey. The team B), Amelia Voluntad (Sr., B), Kelsey SCHALICK boasts plenty of speed throughout DiBenedetto (Jr., G), Brooke Knorr its lineup and should benefit with (Jr., M), Emily Mancini (So., F). COACH: Anne Marie Mercado (6th even more experience. TOP NEWCOMERS: Julie Alspach season, 62-27-13) PREDICTION: Look for the Bulldogs (So., F), Emily Illic (Jr., F), Kelly CONFERENCE: Tri-County to take another step in their growth Hughes (Sr., Swp.), Sara Green Conference Classic Divison and improve on their victory total. (So., M), Alexis Brown (Fr., F), Lacy GROUP: I South Spinelli (Fr., M/B). LAST YEAR: 15-4-1, lost in secCUMBERLAND REG. OUTLOOK: Delsea’s defense has tional final been a staple for successful hockey RETURNING STARTERS: 6. COACH: Dana Meyers (2nd sea- in recent years. If the team is going KEY PLAYERS: Joyce Perry (Sr., F), son, 4-10-1) to find the win column with any reg- Laura Olbrich (Jr., F), Jessica HarCONFERENCE: Tri-County Confer- ularity again this fall, the Crusaders rell (Jr., M), Val Orth (Sr., Ut.), Jamie ence Royal Division

Cumberland
September 8 at Clearview 4pm 12 Highland 4pm 14 at Delsea 4pm 16 Williamstown 4pm 19 Kingsway 4pm 23 at Pennsville 4pm 26 Deptford 4pm 28 Delsea 4pm October 3 Clearview 4pm 5 at Highland 4pm 8 Showcase Tour. at Bishop Eustace11:30am 11 at Williamstown 4pm 13 at Kingsway 4pm 14 Schalick 5:30pm 19 at Woodstown 4pm 21 at Gloucester Co. Tech4pm 24 Gloucester Catholic 4pm 26 at Gloucester 4pm 28 Millville 3:30 pm Gallo (Sr., B), Ciera Ismail (So., B). TOP NEWCOMERS: Ashley Creighton (Jr., F), Giselle Ramos (Sr., G), Allissa Long (Jr., B). OUTLOOK: Schalick has the ability to light up the scoreboard. Perry, Olbrich and Harrell combined for 53 goals last season and the trio, a blend of pure speed and power, will be counted on to supply the scoring touch again. Schalick’s defense isn’t shabby either. Although it must replace some key personel in the back, Schalick’s defense, the key ingredient in the team’s run to three straight Group I South title games, appears it will be stingy again. PREDICTION: Despite key losses to graduation each of the last three seasons, the Cougars have managed to retool their lineup and maintain that winning formula. While this season’s replenishment might be a tough challenge, don’t be surprised if Schalick finds the right combination again. Schalick will be among the favorites in Group I and the Classic Division title races this fall.

PLAYOFF INFO
➤ Teams must have a .500

BUENA REGIONAL
COACH: Barbara Meyrick (36th season, 220-261-93) CONFERENCE: Cape-Atlantic League National Conference GROUP: II South LAST YEAR: 11-9, lost in first round of playoffs RETURNING STARTERS: 9. KEY PLAYERS: Molly Nichols (Sr., LW), Casey Sturts (Jr., F), Natalie Giannascoli (Jr., RW), Carly Linus (Jr., M), Janessa Rios (Jr., M), Ashley Surran (Jr., B), Rachel Heath (Sr., LHB), McKayla Esham (Sr., Swp.), Elena Sneathen (So., G). TOP NEWCOMERS: Eden Wilcox (Jr., B), Brianna Cerione (So., B). OUTLOOK: It’s not easy to replace a 33-goal scorer like Karlie Gruc-

record by Oct. 19 to qualify for the sectional playoffs. Teams may request admission into the tournament with less than a .500 record by submitting the proper paperwork. Brackets will be filled in order of winning percentage; ties will be broken using the standard procedure: head-to-head competition, common opponents and strength of schedule. Preliminary-round games will be played from Oct. 26 through Nov. 5. Sectional finals will be played Nov. 78. State group championships will be held on Nov. 13. The Tournament of Champions title game is Nov. 20.

Staff photo/Cody Glenn

Buena’s Casey Sturts, right, attempts to make her way past a Vineland defender during a game from last season. Sturts is one of the key players for the Chiefs, who are eyeing a return to the postseason this fall.

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