This was another exciting season for the Lesley Lynx, with many great plays and memorable moments. It all began back on August 17th, when the players arrived on campus to start their pre-season training with double sessions. Led once again by veteran coach Paul Vasconcelos, these sessions provided opportunities for the new players to bond with the rest of the team. On August 30th, the Lynx traveled for their season opener, which was at Wentworth Institute of Technology. That game started a four-game winning streak, with the help of goals scored by junior transfer forward Alexandria Torres and sophomore forwards Tayla Mayberry and Chloe Kouyoumdjian.
The team then hosted MIT’s women’s soccer team, number five in the country for women’s division III women’s soccer, for another out of conference game. We held up a fight against them ending the half 0-0. Unfortunately, MIT was able to put two in the back of the net, one being scored with a penalty kick. This was the Lynx’ first loss of the season.
But the Lynx quickly bounced back and resumed their win streak against Becker College in the first conference game. The next Tuesday, the Lynx traveled to Emerson College to compete with the Lions for the annual Charles River Cup. Thanks to the hard work and determination of the team as a whole, and a last second winning goal scored by freshman Alex Carruth, the Lynx returned to Cambridge the winners of the Cup.
This win streak continued for three more games, until the Lynx played Brandeis, another team in the top tier in the country. Despite that fact, the Lynx only fell short by 2 goals. But once more, a loss did not prevent the team from quickly coming back. The Lynx continued their conference win streak later that weekend, beating Bay Path College 4-1, with goals scored by sophomores Kayleigh Chicas and Claire Hounslow, as well as freshman forward Macey Merlo and senior captain and center defender Melanie Mathewson who scored their first collegiate goals.
The next weekend the team traveled to Elms College in Chicopee MA with four major players out with injuries, including Hope Seasholes senior captain and starting outside right defender, and senior forward Kate Scott. Luckily, the Lynx had other players who stepped up, including freshman Gabby Lara, as well as Sophie Smurthwaite, Kerrie Larson and Kayleigh Chicas. Sadly, the game resulted in a loss, the only conference loss of the season, but it wasn’t from a lack of effort.
Next, the Lynx traveled up to New England College where they started another win streak. This streak continued to finish off the season, which ended on October 29th. At season’s end, the Lynx were placed first in the NECC conference. Coach Paul Vasconcelos was named coach of the year for the ninth time; it was an award he definitely deserved. The team also had five players on the first all-conference team: sophomore Claire Hounslow, junior Maddie Deitrick, junior Julia Cohn and sophomores Larson and Smurthwaite as well as two players on the second all-conference team sophomore Kouyoumdjian and junior Torres.
On November 6th, the Lesley Lynx played the home semi-final against Becker. The team went into this game injury-free, and the final score was 2-1, with both of the Lynx goals scored by Alexandria Torres, one assisted by Kerrie Larson and the other by Chloe Kouyoumdjian.
And then, the team hosted the NECC championship game on November 9th, against Elms College. Junior center midfielder Deitrick scored a header from a cross from our outside left defender Larson, to put the first goal on the board. This allowed the Lynx to start half time with a 0-1 lead, after which, they stepped back on the pitch for the second half, and scored shortly after. Sophomore center midfielder and forward Hounslow was the scorer, on a breakaway, making the game 2-0 in favor of Lesley. Later that half, Elms came back to score two goals, bringing the game to overtime. In the first overtime, the Lynx had many opportunities, one in which went into the goal but was taken back because of an off-sides call. The game went into a second overtime, which again ended with a 0-0 result. At that point, it led to penalty kicks. Elms missed their first shot, but then four Lesley players– Torres, Deitrick, Kate Scott and Kouyoumdjian– made their shots.
Senior goalkeeper Brittley Gaan saved Elms’ last penalty kick, and the Lesley Lynx had won the championship. At the end of the conference tournament, the team came away with many awards, including Torres, Deitrick, Hounslow and Smurthwaite who made the all-tournament team, and Detrick was named all-tournament MVP. The Lesley women’s soccer team finished with a record of 14 wins, 3 losses and 2 ties. All of the players, along with Coach Vasconcelos were proud of what the team accomplished– especially winning the championship for the third year in a row.