Good news: Rowan is undefeated, standing at 1-0 after beating Ursinus College in a tight 11-10 victory last week to start the season.
The bad news: The Profs have as many games canceled due to weather so far this year as they have actual games played. Not the ideal start for a team looking to get into their groove on and prove why they came up just a few games short of the New Jersey Athletic Conference (NJAC) finals less than a year ago.
Only Mother Nature could stop the highflying Profs as they returned to Richard Wacker Stadium for their first home game against Stevens over the weekend. As their Saturday matinee with the team from North Jersey was postponed as the tri-state area was dumped with multiple inches of snow and ice.
For long time head coach Lindsey Delaney, it’s all just part of the season.
“Welcome to spring sports,” Delaney said with a smirk. “Hopefully we get to play, and if not we’ll have fresh legs for the next one.”
Fortunate for the Profs and their opponent in Salisbury, officials moved Wednesday’s (3/6) game at Salisbury (VA) to Tuesday (3/5) in an attempt to beat the next barrage of winter storms headed to the Northeast.
The Profs look to not only beat the winter weather, but this team in particular after a rough 16-6 loss last season. Junior captain Taylor Gretz knows what her team needs to do to get things done on the road this season.
“We need to come into this game more level headed this year and stick together as a team and play a more cohesive game,” Gretz said.
And it was off the leadership of veteran players like Gretz and offensive star Maddie Bray that led the Profs to a tightly contested affair with one of the nations top teams.
The brown and gold gave up the games first four goals to 5th ranked Salisbury as they battled hard to stay even in a match up with the high-scoring Sea Gulls. They pulled to within a goal at halftime with a 6-5 deficit.
Maddie Bray got the Profs on the board first, ending with three goals and securing her spot as Rowan’s Female Athlete of the Week. Teammate Liz Kramer scored three goals in the final two minutes of the half to keep the team in the game.
The Profs ran over Salisbury for much of the contest, controlling play and connecting big on offensive in key moments. However, the high powered Salisbury offense and star attacker Dana King (6 goals) were too much for the Profs’ defensive core, as the team gave up 13 goals on 16 shots. Rowan connected on 10 of 19.
The brown and gold fell 13-10 to the Sea Gulls, leaving them at 1-1 on the season but optimistic about their next two games on the road after matching a difficult opponent on their home field.
Rowan heads to Catholic University for a 12:00 p.m. Saturday match up with the
11th-ranked Cardinals in another game that will test the strength of this team early in the season. The brown and gold wrap up their three-game road trip against Bridgewater College next Monday (3/15) before coming home to face Skidmore College in the team’s first home game of the season, March 15 at 11 a.m.
The Profs have some areas of work that need improvement if they look to contend in the NJAC and beyond this season, but in victory or defeat, Delaney puts it best.
“Nothing ever goes the way you want it, unless you’re blowing out an opponent,” she said.
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