As the fall season begins for the Wildcats, the athletic program seems to be heading in the right direction with their preparation for upcoming games.
The preseason rankings for the football team is set for them gain another conference title and placing fifth overall in the division. Women’s soccer is ranked to be competing for the title as well against the Puget Sound Loggers. The volleyball team is predicted to get fifth in the league right behind Lewis & Clark. Men’s soccer is ranked seventh, with new leadership of Linfield alumni Chuck Bechtol.
The football team has been practicing out on the field and attending meetings daily in order to prepare for their first game against Menlo on Sept 1. The Wildcats are scheduled to play Cal Lutheran on Sept 15, which was one of the closest games of the last season with a score of 30-27.
After a tough loss to the Loggers in the final season game, the women’s soccer team has been working hard to prepare for another successful season. Junior Em Fellows is returning to the field this year after sitting out last year due to a bone bruise on her knee.
“She is a big contributor scoring wise, but also she’s a really great leadership presence on the field and works hard,” sophomore Emily Ing said. “It’s awesome having her back.”
They have gained three new coaches, including someone to assist with specifically the goalies. Their preseason is scheduled against some tough competitors, starting with Cal Lutheran on Aug 31.
Men’s soccer has been working hard to improve from previous seasons. Bechtol has had a good deal of experience with coaching and is set to make the program better as time goes on. This year’s team has eight seniors, including leading scorer Xavier Reed.
The volleyball team is set to come back strong after a building season last year that had seven freshmen on the court. With only three seniors graduated, the team has a solid foundation of returners to lead them to a successful season. Sophomore Kailana Ritte-Camara is one of the team’s top offensive players and is set to make a strong appearance in this season’s matches.
The cross country team started off their practices with early morning runs each day. As a team, they bonded through movie nights and other activities. Both men’s and women’s teams are expected to have another successful season after the women finishing fifth at the NCAA West Regional and the men placing seventh. Juniors Joe Gladow and Mimi Seeley are some this year’s stand out runners.
Overall, the Wildcats are ready to take on the season with full force and aim to improve their programs as the season progresses.
Ivanna Tucker/Sports Editor
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