Gannon soccer teams ready for new season

Nathan Manion, Staff Writer

The beginning of September also marks the beginning of Gannon University’s men’s and women’s soccer seasons.

Both teams will be playing their first full competitive season since 2019, with both teams having played a combined 10 games during the COVID-19 pandemic-shortened 2021 season.

The 2021 PSAC preseason men’s rankings have Gannon at No. 2 in the West Division behind rival Mercyhurst. However, the Knights are the only team in the conference to be ranked in the United Soccer coaches Top-25 preseason poll, in which they are ranked at 17th.

In the 2020-2021 shortened season the Knights finished with a 3-3-0 record. But, in 2019, the last full season, Gannon was the runner-up in the PSAC after losing to Millersville in the championship game.

The Knights finished that season with an 18-3-0 record and made it to the second round of the NCAA Division II Tournament.

It seems Gannon is aiming for a repeat of that 2019 season and has the talent to do so.

Leading the Knights is junior midfielder Sergio Del Castillo. In two seasons for Gannon, Del Castillo has scored 17 goals and eight of those came in the shortened 2020 season in which he led the team in scoring.

The Gannon men’s team is coached by Billy Colton; this will be his third season as head coach.

On the women’s side, the 2021 PSAC preseason rankings have Gannon ranked third in the West Division behind Slippery Rock and Mercyhurst.

In the 2020 shortened season, the Knight women finished with a 3-1 record, while in 2019 – their last full season – they finished with an 8-7-2 record. That season was highlighted by a 2-1-1 record against rivals Mercyhurst and Edinboro.

The Knights hope to repeat or improve on their 2019 season and build off the small success seen in last year’s shortened season.

Leading the Knights will be senior goalkeeper Kennedy Solymosi, who allowed one goal in the shortened play of last year.

Solymosi was also the two-time recipient of PSAC West Defensive Athlete of the Week honors in 2019. On offense, the Knights will be returning Megan McCartney, who led the 2019 team in scoring with five goals and 14 points.

The Gannon women are coached by Colin Petersen, and this will be his 20th season as head coach.

The Gannon men’s team is slated to open its season with a 4 p.m. match Thursday against Notre Dame College in South Euclid, Ohio. The men’s team will open their home season at 1 p.m. Sunday against Tiffin at McConnell Family Stadium.

The Gannon women’s team will open its season at 6 p.m. Thursday against the Notre Dame College Falcons at McConnell Family Stadium.


Nathan Manion

[email protected]