Catching Up With the Spartans
By Nate Sweetman
Coming off their first post-season appearance, the D’Youville men’s soccer team struggled to get over the hump this year. They ended 2-14-1, and 1-7-1 in conference play. The Spartans were loaded with injuries this year, which led to a lot of role and position changes.
Their best and most hard fought game was against Medaille at the beautiful Dobson Field. Seniors Nick Johnson (North Tonawanda, NY/Niagara-Wheatfield) and Brett Matthews (Angola, NY/Lake Shore) led the team to a tie in double overtime, 2-2.
Nick Johnson and Brett Matthews have made their marks in Spartans history. In his four year tenure as a Spartan, Nick has played in 54 games, and has added six goals, seven assists and 19 total points. Brett has had an impressive 246 saves through four years, with a save percentage of 71%.
Freshman standout Josh Hammer (Amherst, NY/Sweet Home) earned his way AMCC Third Team All-Conference player
A team loaded with seniors and veterans, this Spartan’s women’s soccer team had a successful season, in which they went 8-6-1 in the regular season. On Saturday, September 19th, the Spartans won an exhibition game against SUNY Canton 9-0, their largest victory of the season.
Senior Rebecca Alvira (Buffalo, NY/Mount Mercy Academy) started her career off strong with setting a franchise record for a freshman with 12 goals and 28 total points. She’s currently 3rd all-time in goals. Senior Elizabeth Lyons (Lancaster, NY/Lancaster) has been a trooper for the red and black. She’s fought hard every game, and is 2nd all-time in assists for the Spartans. Seniors and twins Melissa LaVere (Clarence, NY/Williamsville East) and Nicole LaVere (Clarence, NY/Williamsville East) have had an outstanding career for D’Youville. Melissa is in the top five of many different categories for the Spartans including 4th all-time in points and assists. Nicole has bounced from multiple positions, showing her flexibility as a soccer player and leader. She’s currently 4th all-time in game-winning goals.
The women’s soccer team was the fifth seed in the AMCC Playoffs after defeating the fourth seeded La Roche Redhawks. Catie Giebner (Sicklerville, NY/Winslow Township) scored the game winning goal. She scored another goal in the team’s loss to the first seeded Pitt.-Bradford in the AMCC Semi-Finals.
Alvira and Nicole LaVere both were named to the AMCC All-Tournament Team. Nicole was also chosen as one of the conference’s best players being voted as a First Team All-Conference player. Becca also had an outstanding season and was voted to the AMCC All-Conference Second Team. Three other Spartans, Rachel Hermanski (Cheektowaga, NY/Maryvale), Melissa LaVere and Megan Dulniak (Cheektowaga, NY/Cheektowaga), all made the All-Conference Third Team.
The women’s volleyball team this season has been injury-riddled, but showed improvement every game behind 2nd year coach Stephanie Kazmierczak. Kazmierczak has led the team, even with a bundle of injuries, to a 4-20 record. Despite the injuries, the team improved and stayed in matches every game.
Sophomore Megan Schneider (Lockport, NY/ Lockport) has had a career year, in a position she’s not used to playing in because of injuries. Against Mount Aloysius at home, she posted a whopping 42 assists. She also leads the team in assists, and is second in digs.
Sophomore Brian Buttaggi (Webster, NY/Webster) solidified himself as one of the top runners for the D’Youville men’s cross country team, as well as the AMCC. He finished first for the Spartans in every race he ran this season.
Coach Bill Maloney has brought together a genuine team, full of great runners. The Spartans will only be losing one runner, senior Jarred Bogardus (Gowanda, NY/Gowanda).
The men finished fourth overall in the conference at the AMCC Championship.
For the women, senior and veteran Emily Quast (Lockport, NY/Lockport) led the women’s cross country team through some great races. She led the team in most races, and showed the AMCC why she continues to succeed. She closed out her career by being named to her fourth consecutive all-conference team.
The women finished sixth overall at the AMCC Championship.
Both the men’s and women’s teams are heading to the NCAA Mid-East Regionals on November 13th.
The women’s crew team finished their season off strong with a 3rd place finish at Canisius. The team is heading into a positive direction behind new head coach Lauren Ciurzynski. After the Canisius match, Ciurzynski expressed how her thoughts about the team saying "This was a great way to end the season and prove that all of the hard work throughout paid off."
The women’s tennis team fought hard this season under new head coach Stephen Weiss. Freshman Gillian Wittig (Depew, NY/Depew) had a strong rookie season. Senior Courtney Fox (Buffalo, NY/Tapestry Charter School) and Krista Cornell (Tonawanda, NY/Kenmore East) were consistently the top two players for the women all season long.
Megan McCarthy (Eden, NY/Eden) had one of her best statistical seasons and was named an AMCC Third Team All-Conference player.
The D’Youville men’s golf team had a fresh face lead the team in 2015. Freshman Harrison Wright (Hamburg, NY/Frontier) was the top Spartan golfer in every match he competed in and was named an AMCC Third Team All-Conference player.