A total of four Yellowjacket teams were ranked among the best in the country this fall, including the first-ever Top 20 ranking of the Rochester field hockey team. Also earning national rankings were men’s soccer and the men’s and women’s cross country teams.
Men’s cross country: With four runners placing among the top eight individuals, the Yellowjackets captured the New York State Collegiate Track Conference title in late October, Rochester’s first state title since 2008, its 12th since 1987, and its 14th overall. John Bernstein ’14 and Adam Pacheck ’15 earned first team All–New York State honors for the Yellowjackets, who were ranked 22nd nationally going into states.
Football: Heading into November, the Yellowjackets were looking to finish strong with Liberty League matchups against Worcester Polytechnic Institute and Hobart College. Rochester opened the season with a win against Thiel College. In the second week, Rochester lost to St. John Fisher College in the final Courage Bowl when the Cardinals rallied in the fourth quarter for a 20–16 win. For a homecoming performance that included seven tackles and a fumble recovery, linebacker Thomas Marone ’16 earned “Rookie of the Week” honors from the Liberty League.
Golf: The team qualified for next spring’s Liberty League match play championships with a third-place showing at this fall’s Liberty League championships. Nick Palladino ’14 took second place with a minus-1 score of 70 on day two, tying the lowest score of the tournament. He earned first team All–Liberty League honors while Dom Schumacher ’16 and G. W. VanderZwaag ’16 were named to the second team.
Men’s soccer: Riding a seven-game unbeaten streak in October, a stretch that included a win and two ties against Top 10 teams, the Yellowjackets returned to the national rankings as the season was coming to a close. Jack Thesing ’15 was named UAA Soccer Offensive Player of the Week for his performance in Rochester’s wins against then fifth-ranked Carnegie Mellon and against Emory, both on the road.
Men’s tennis: The Yellowjackets finished the fall portion of their schedule with a 9–0 victory over St. John Fisher, getting straight set wins from all six singles players and winning all three doubles matches. Matthew Levine ’16 was a two-time UAA Athlete of the Week.
Women’s cross country: Lauren Norton ’13 became Rochester’s first individual women’s cross country champion in 25 years as she led nearly the entire way at the New York State Collegiate Track Conference women’s cross country championships in late October. The last Yellowjacket woman to take the title was Josefa Benzoni ’88, ’92W (MAT) in 1987. The Yellowjackets were ranked 31st nationally in late October.
Field hockey: Rochester set a record for the most wins in a season with 14, with one regular season game left in late October, earning a spot in the Liberty League playoffs. Ranked as high as 18th in the nation, the Yellowjackets have been paced by Shelby Hall ’13 with 17 goals through late October and Michele Relin ’16 with 15. Hall, who scored three goals against Ithaca and had an assist in the team’s homecoming win against Morrisville State, was named league Player of the Week.
Women’s soccer: Going into the last week of the season, the Yellowjackets were 3–10–1 overall. Grace Van der Ven ’14 led the team with 21 shots on goal, followed by Christine Keck ’13 with 20.
Women’s tennis: Julia Weaver ’16 and Janice Zhao ’14 earned singles wins at the Bowdoin Invitational in October, a three-day event featuring a round robin format with four strong women’s teams from across the northeast. Joining Rochester were Bowdoin, Wellesley, and Bates. Frances Tseng ’13 reached the semifinals of the ITA Northeast regionals.
Volleyball: The Yellowjackets improved to 18–9 with a strong showing at senior day. The 3–1 win over Nazareth College was the last match before Rochester headed to the UAA championships at Emory University in early November. In their final home matchup, seniors Kelly Mulrey finished with a match-high 23 kills while Alma Guevara added seven. Lauren Bujnicki had 24 digs. Meghan Neff had three kills and two block assists and Claire Donohue had four kills.