The SU women’s soccer team will kick off the season ranked No. 7 in the Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference (PSAC).
Last season, the Raiders improved tremendously, recording four more wins than the previous year.
If that trend continues into this upcoming season, the women will once again find themselves with a trip to the PSAC playoffs. SU’s run was cut short last season in a heartbreaking double-overtime loss to Slippery Rock University in the PSAC quarterfinals. The top eight teams of the 17-team conference will have a shot at the title.
The Raiders will head into the season with six seniors sprinkled throughout the lineup. Seniors Stephanie Allshouse and Casey Rightmyer are team captains.
Rightmyer has confidence that this year’s group will have a talented core this season. “Coming from the first scrimmage, we won 3-0, and there was so much energy. The chemistry with this team already is phenomenal, and I just think it’s going to make for a really great season,” Rightmyer told SU Sports Information.
Head coach Rob Fulton has served 11 years at the helm of the team, with his team qualifying for the PSAC playoffs two out of the last three years.
However, the goal this season is not just qualifying, but winning the tournament, a feat that no Shippensburg women’s team has accomplished yet.
“I think the ceiling of potential is very high. I think the expectations are high, but what we talk about on a daily basis is that process of improvement day-to-day and let the results take care of themselves,” Fulton told SU Sports Information.
The Raiders won nine PSAC games last season, the second highest number any SU women’s team has won in its history.
SU will take on California University of Pennsylvania on Sept. 1. California faltered last year but has won two PSAC championships in the past five years, so a high level of play is to still be expected. The matchup will be SU’s first home game. The waters will be rocky early on in the season as the Raiders take on the PSAC defending champion East Stroudsburg University Saturday, Sept. 3.
Two PSAC wins to kick off the season could be just what SU needs to take a run at the top seed in the conference.