Wake Forest Fall Sports Off to Strong Starts
Sept. 16, 2013
WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. - Wake Forest has gotten the fall sports season off to a strong start with its teams holding a combined 23-5-1 record. Three Demon Deacon squads - the seventh-ranked women's soccer team, 15th-ranked men's soccer team and the 18th-ranked field hockey team - are ranked in the Top 25 nationally.
Below is a recap of the Wake Forest teams' seasons to this point.
Women's Soccer // 6-0-1 (1-0-1 ACC) // National Rank: 7
At 6-0-1, the Demon Deacons are off to their best start since 2009, a significant accomplishment given that the last three years have seen the Deacs win an ACC Championship and reach the NCAA College Cup.
Wake Forest won all five of its non-conference games against one of the most difficult schedules in the country, including a 3-2 come-from-behind victory on the road at national powerhouse No. 15 Portland. The Demon Deacons opened ACC play Thursday with a 0-0 tie against No. 4 Florida State before smoking Miami 4-0 on Sunday.
It's the last go-around for three-time All-American Katie Stengel, who holds almost all of Wake Forest's scoring records and two-time All-American Aubrey Bledsoe, who is at the top of almost all of the Demon Deacons' goalkeeper categories. Stengel leads the Demon Deacons with five goals and six assists in seven games this year and is one goal away from netting the 50th of her career.
Up next is a home match against rival Duke on Thursday at 7 p.m., followed by a four-match ACC road stretch that will keep the Deacons away from Spry Stadium for almost a month.
Men's Soccer // 3-1-0 (2-0-0 ACC) // National Rank: 15
The Demon Deacons have rattled off three straight wins including the last two against ACC foes to sit in first place in the ACC standings.
On Saturday, the Wake Forest jumped out to a 3-0 lead over archrival Virginia in front of a capacity crowd at Spry Stadium and survived a late scare to hold on for a 3-2 victory. That came on the heels of a 2-0 shutout of Boston College that marked the first time that the Deacons had ever beaten the Eagles on the road.
Redshirt senior Andy Lubahn has rebounded from a knee injury that kept him out last season to lead the Deacs with seven points (two goals, three assists) and is one goal away from moving into the Top 10 in school history. Fellow senior Luca Gimenez has also netted two goals this year for the Deacs.
The Deacs will hit the road to face Elon and Pitt this week before returning home for matches against VCU (Sept. 24) and North Carolina (Sept. 28).
Field Hockey // 5-1 // National Rank: 18
The Deacons have won five of their first six games including a victory against No. 9 Michigan in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge that marked the highest-ranked opponent that they had defeated since 2009.
Last week, Wake Forest beat up on regional foes Davidson, Liberty and William & Mary, outscoring them by a combined 12-3. Junior Anna Kozniuk leads the Demon Deacons with 11 points on four goals and three assists, with senior Kari Walkey also chipping in four goals.
The start of ACC play is next, as the Deacons will travel to take on No. 2 Maryland on Friday followed by a road non-conference match against American on Sunday.
Volleyball // 8-1
First-year head coach Ken Murczek has the Demon Deacons off to their best start since 2000 with an 8-1 record through nine matches.
The Deacs swept their home tournament, the Deacon Invitational, to open the season and then won all three matches at the UMKC Kangaroo Classic last weekend to capture the titles at both events.
The Deacons will play their final non-conference tournament of the season this weekend at JMU before jumping into ACC play at home against Virginia Tech (Sept. 27) and Virginia (Sept. 28).
Football // 1-2 (0-1 ACC)
The Demon Deacons have struggled on the gridiron in the early season, dropping their last two games to Boston College and ULM after winning their opener against Presbyterian.
After missing the game against the Blue Hose with an injury, Michael Campanaro got back up to speed against Boston College and ULM, tying his own ACC record with 16 catches against the Warhawks. While he is one of six players in ACC history to have 16 receptions in a game, he is the only one of them to accomplish the feat twice.
The Demon Deacons will travel to take on Army in West Point, N.Y. this weekend. The Deacs have won their last six games against the Black Knights.
Sophomore Kent Garrett was named the ACC Cross Country Performer of the Week last week, marking the first time that a Wake Forest men's runner has won the award since 2003.
Garrett's recognition came after winning the Virginia Tech Invitational, when he out-paced a field of 57 runners with a time of 18:55.60 on a 6k course.
The Demon Deacons men's cross country team also took home first place at the Wake Forest relays to open the season, while the women's team captured second place. Junior Aubrey Waggoner won the women's 4k race at the Virginia Tech Invitational, finishing in 14:07.90.
The Deacs will host the Wake Forest Invitational this weekend at Beeson Park in Kernersville, N.C. on the same course that will be the venue for the ACC Cross Country Championship in November.
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