New Paltz Fall Sports Updates: SUNYAC Semifinals

New Paltz Field Hockey team members photographed at SUNYAC semifinals in Geneseo.

On Tuesday, Nov. 1 at the SUNYAC first round matches, several SUNY New Paltz athletic teams competed in the SUNYAC semifinals, held at SUNY Geneseo and SUNY Cortland. Women’s Volleyball, Women’s Soccer and Field Hockey athletes trained hard in preparation for their upcoming matchups. How did they do?

For the first time in nearly a decade, New Paltz Women’s Soccer earned a spot in the SUNYAC semifinals. Up by the Finger Lakes, the Geneseo Knights beat the Hawks’ Women’s Soccer team, 3-2, on Wednesday, Nov. 2 at the SUNYAC games.

An early 2-0 deficit set the Hawks back, but there were notable moments throughout the game. In the 28th minute, fourth-year Siena Diaz-Colon was at midfield and managed to win back possession of the ball, passing it to first-year Brooke Kelleher. For most of the first half, the game was played at midfield, and at this point, each team had four shots. About 10 minutes into the second half, the Hawks cut the deficit to one, making the score 2-1. With 16 minutes left to go, second-year Parris Burke managed to run into the box, but the ball hit her in the back. First-year Mia Baldinger was there on the rebound, cutting the score to 3-2. 

In the field hockey semifinals, Geneseo defeated New Paltz 4-2 in Geneseo on Wednesday Nov. 2. The Hawks’ season came to an end with a record of 10-7 overall.

After a scoreless first quarter, New Paltz led in the last three minutes of the first half. The Hawks took the lead, 1-0, into halftime, but Geneseo was quick to tie the score just four minutes into the third quarter. Initially, first-year goalie Gail Comiskey made the save — but unfortunately, the Hawks were unable to clear the ball out. Early on in the fourth quarter, the Hawks tied it at 2-2, after graduate student Shannon Bernhardt passed the ball to fourth-year Natasia Plunkett, who played it in to third-year Hannah Ackerman. Ackerman was able to cut the ball and play first-year Rachel Tama for the tap in goal. Geneseo sealed the deal on the 4-2 score with one last insurance goal.

Last week, New Paltz women’s volleyball defeated Buffalo State on Tuesday Nov. 1 on our home turf, 3-0, advancing to the final four along with Geneseo. The Hawks went head to head with SUNY Brockport at the SUNYAC semifinals at SUNY Cortland on Friday Nov. 4. The team fought hard but ultimately lost 1-3.

Overall, The Hawks hit 0.77, while SUNY Brockport’s Golden Eagles hit 0.235. Second-year Letisha Perez and third-year Mackenzie Williams led the team with 12 kills each. Fourth-year Victoria Konicki had three blocks and six kills. Third-year Cate DiGiacomo finished the game with 11 digs and 12 kills. The Hawks’ regular season came to a close at 21-4, overall. Matt Giufre, the head women’s volleyball coach, revealed his feelings regarding the senior women on his team: “I think of them as athletes and as students and as citizens of the College and they just grew up so much. They are role models of what a career should look like start to finish. They are definitely a very influential group. We have to figure out how to fill their shoes, but it won’t be easy.”

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