The cross-country team experienced a youth movement last season with 11 freshmen.
This year’s team should be able to improve with those 11 now representing the team as sophomores. Also, the team did not lose any seniors — so it should be good shape going into the season with more experience. Head coach Ben Thomas leads the team again this year.
The soccer team had one of its best seasons in 2009 and the team is looking to repeat its success this year. Head coach Kelly Cagle took the team to the Sweet 16 of the NCAA tournament for the first time ever, before falling to Portland. Sophomore Kelly Conheeney, who was named to the Soccer-America all freshman team, and sophomore Kelsey Mitchell will look to lead the team once again this year. According to Cagle, the team should be in pretty good shape this year.
“In order for us to maintain our confidence, regardless of the opponent, we just focus on the things that we have control over and how we approach each game,” Cagle said.
The volleyball season starts at the end of August and ends in late November. Last season’s squad had an overall record of 19-12 and was 9-11 in the Atlantic Coast Conference. Cassell Coliseum really served as home-field advantage last season, as the team compiled an overall record of 12-3 at home. The team only lost four seniors from last year’s squad and should be ready to compete in the ACC competitively this season.
The basketball team looks to improve upon its 15-15 overall record (4-10 in ACC) from last season. The squad only lost three seniors from the past season, so the team should be in better shape than last year when four freshmen were on the team. Head coach Beth Dunkenberger will look to Shanel Harrison, Alyssa Fenyn, Nikki Davis and Brittany Gordon to serve as team leaders.
“We have very high expectations for next season since we have four returning starters,” said head coach Beth Dunkenberger.
SWIM & DIVE
The lady H20kies team had one of its best seasons in program history. Head coach Ned Skinner sent four swimmers to the NCAA meet this past March. Overall, the team finished fifth at the ACCs this past season and will look to improve on that performance in 2011. Sophomore all-American Erika Hajnal and senior Lauren Ritter will lead
Since joining the ACC, the women’s lacrosse team has struggled to compete with more established programs in the conference. Last season, the team had 13 freshmen playing and only one senior, so in 2011, the team looks to be more familiar with one another. The team hopes to improve upon its 6-11 record from last season.
The softball team has been in a rebuilding stage since it won the ACC championships in 2008. The team has experienced losing records in each of the past two seasons but it has had a youth movement over that time. Only three seniors will be lost from the 2010 season. The lady Hokies look to get off to a hot start in the fall and hope to carry over the success over to the spring.
The women’s tennis team has had a younger roster for the past several seasons. Coach Terry Ann Zawacki-Woods will have quite an experienced team, however, by the time this season rolls around. The team did not lose any seniors, so the girls should be able to build on last season’s success. The tennis team competes in both the fall and the spring. With such an experienced roster, the team looks to be competitive in the ACC.
TRACK AND FIELD
The track and field team has been one of the more successful teams in women’s sports over the past few years at Tech. Track is a unique sport in which the athletes get to compete in both indoor and outdoor season. Indoor season is from January to the beginning of March, while the outdoor season begins one week after the indoor season is over.
Last season, the team finished third at the ACC indoor championships and sixth at the outdoor championships. After losing talented seniors, this year’s team will still be in good shape after bringing in highly talented recruits, according to head coach Dave Cianelli.
“Next year, we’re going to be able to move back up to the top three in the conference with the recruits that are coming in,” Cianelli said.