Sports roundup: Tennis opens strong

Brendan Bianowicz

Field Hockey

The field hockey team had one win and one loss after the annual Vonnie Gros Classic at West Chester University in West Chester, Pa. The Wildcats fell to UNC in windy and rainy conditions on Friday, but redeemed themselves with a 7-1 win against Appalachian State on Saturday night.

Villanova’s first competition was the No. 2 Tar Heels, who were led by 2008 Olympian and senior Katelyn Falgowski, with two goals and two assists. Despite junior goalkeeper Maura McCormick’s season-high seven saves, and sophomore goalkeeper Megan Goelz’s two saves, the Wildcats still could not hold off the undefeated UNC team from scoring four goals in the first half of play.

The Tar Heels continued to control the game after half time by scoring three additional goals and leaving Villanova with no points on the board to make it a 7-0 game.

The tournament continued on Saturday night for the Wildcats as they met with their last opponents, Appalachian State. Junior midfielder Meredith Sabatini began her career-high scoring streak of four goals in the 27th minute off an assist from junior Lauren Wuzzardo to end scoreless play. Wuzzardo, who had two goals and two assists, also set up a penalty corner as hitter with junior inserter Meg Ryan and senior stopper Emily Donaldson to help bring Villanova up by two at the end of the first half.

The momentum did not stop in the second half, as Sabatini scored her second goal off a save on the last of four consecutive corner attempts for Villanova. In the 43rd minute, redshirt junior Dana Ramsden put one away off of Wuzzardo’s second assist, increasing her season statistics to four goals. After Appalachian State scored its only goal around the 53rd minute, the Wildcats answered with three goals, two by Sabatini and another off a corner by Wuzzardo to end it.

Villanova got revenge by outshooting Appalachian State 41-3 and clenching the game with a 7-1 win.

Sabatini was named to this week’s Big East honor roll in recognition for her play in both games over the weekend. Sabatini is off to the best start of her career, leading the team in points with 16 and coming in second in overall goals.

The team’s first home game is against Rutgers tomorrow in Villanova Stadium at 7 p.m. This game marks the beginning of Big East play. – L.B.


The tennis team started its fall season off on the right foot with a successful opening weekend in Trenton, N.J., winning 19 of its 24 matches. From Friday through Sunday, the ‘Cats faced the Lions of The College of New Jersey in their annual matchup in the Fall Kickoff Classic.

Rain on the first day of the tournament forced Friday’s matches to be held indoors, but the weather was unable to keep the ‘Nova men’s team from sweeping the top three doubles matches thanks to impressive play from their No. 1 doubles pairing, junior Trent Alenik and senior Alex Leeser; their No. 2 pairing, sophomores Alex Hanno and Mike Taylor; and their No. 3 pairing, freshman Conner Witty and junior Dave Shaheen. The No. 4 pairing, senior John Magliano and this year’s walk-on Liam Bohonnon, played well in a 8-6 loss.

Notable undefeated honors for the weekend, in both singles- and doubles-play, went to Witty, Shaheen and Alenik. The Wildcats look to carry this momentum into this weekend’s Brown Invitational in Providence, R.I.

On Friday, the Wildcat women and the TCNJ Lions also played two rounds of doubles matches indoors due to the inclement weather.  

The victories played out evenly for both sides.  Continuing the tournament into Sunday, one round of doubles and one round of singles matches were played outdoors as the weather finally cleared.

Though the players were competitive and well-fought, the Lions came through with a victory over the Wildcats.  Senior Courtney Reed and sophomore Kristen Gobberg earned both a singles and doubles victory each.  Sophomore Allie Harding pulled through with a singles win.

This weekend, the Wildcats will be in Lewisburg, Pa., participating in the Bucknell Tournament. -B.B.