Looking back at the fall sports season

by Carl Setterlund / Beacon Staff • November 6, 2013

Alyssa Thorne making a hit.
Alyssa Thorne making a hit.

Women's Volleyball Player of the Year:

Alyssa Thorne, senior, outside hitter

Season in review: Thorne led Emerson in kills with 258 over the course of the 2013 season, reaching double digits 14 times, despite being undersized for her position at 5-foot-7. She also had 15 kills or more five different times. Thorne stepped up after the Lions’ NEWMAC schedule began, registering 18 kills in a conference win over Mount Holyoke and 14 kills in a win over WPI, another NEWMAC team. The senior also contributed defensively with 66 digs.

Coach’s comment: “She hits a very heavy ball, which is hard to go ahead and dig, and she’s a smart attacker as well. She really attacks the line well rather than swinging across court into bigger blockers, [and] she can be smart in tipping the ball into the open spots.”  — Women’s volleyball head coach Ben Read


Women's volleyball season in review:

Final record: 15-12, 3-7 NEWMAC

Best win: Oct. 15: Emerson 3, Babson 2

After struggling to close matches this season, the Lions pulled out the win over a strong NEWMAC side that finished with a 7-3 record in conference. Emerson posted a 25-8 first set win for its most impressive set of the season, and then went up 2-0 after squeaking out the second set. After dropping the next two, they recovered to win the decisive fifth set, 15-12. Emerson spread around the scoring, as five players contributed at least seven kills, including contributions from Alex Lynn and Elizabeth Reid, who each had nine kills.

Top newcomer: Julianna Augustine

The 6-foot freshman middle blocker finished second on the team with 228 kills, and was one of four players to appear in all 27 matches this fall. Augustine also finished with fewer errors than Emerson’s other top hitters, Thorne and junior Kat Rice. Her two top performances came against NEWMAC foes, compiling 15 kills versus Coast Guard and 14 against Wheaton College. Augustine also finished her season with nine blocks, second on the team only to Rice.

Outgoing seniors: Thorne, Brandy Eggermann (team-high 98 sets played, 172 digs, 33 assists, 22 service aces), and Jamie Morgan (team-best 385 digs, 25 assists, 18 service aces).

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Women's Soccer Player of the Year:

Tayllar Righini, sophomore, midfielder

Season in review: The central midfielder contributed on both ends of the field, but got forward enough to score six goals, double the amount of her next-closest teammates. Four of those goals were game-winners, helping account for more than half of Emerson’s seven victories. Righini was one of three players to start all 19 matches for the Lions. The sophomore scored in three of the Lions’ final four matches, all coming against NEWMAC competition.

Player reaction: “The team always pushes each other to do their best and I’ve gotten a lot of advice to just keep shooting, and I think I was a little timid to shoot before. It was everyone, though. It was a team effort to make the passes, connect everything and then get the ball to the right spot where you make the final shot.” — Tayllar Righini


Women's soccer season in review:

Final record: 

 7-11-1, 2-7-1 NEWMAC

Best win: Sept. 28: Emerson 1, Mount Holyoke 0

In the Lions’ first NEWMAC victory in program history, sophomore forward Alyssa Giannone scored the match’s lone goal, which head coach David Suvak described as “the best [he’s] seen at Emerson” since he started coaching in 2010. Giannone’s goal, a header into the top left corner of the net, came off a free kick from sophomore defender Riana Odin. Freshman goalkeeper Melanie Escobar made her second career start in the match, racking up three saves to shut out the visiting Lyons. Emerson outshot Mount Holyoke 9-6 in the match. 

Top newcomer: Natalie Benjamin

The freshman midfielder scored three times, all coming in wins, to tie her for the second-highest goal total on the team. Benjamin’s goals helped the Lions get early wins over Wentworth, Wheelock, and rival Suffolk University. Benjamin scored the opening goal against Suffolk to help Emerson improve to a 4-2 start. Benjamin appeared in 16 games, starting 13 of them, at one of the most demanding positions on the field as she played important roles on offense and defense.

Outgoing seniors: Samantha O’Donovan (17 starts), Casey Jablonski (19 starts), Marissa MacDonald (six starts, 22 saves and .733 save percentage)

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Men's Soccer Player of the Year:

Adam Halliday, sophomore, midfielder

Season in review: The sophomore tied with senior Ole Eriksen for the team goal-scoring lead with seven, but he set himself apart by also leading the team in assists with five. Halliday scored three game-winners, converted the Lions’ only penalty kick of the season, and had a goal or an assist in six of Emerson’s seven victories. He placed 35 of his 65 shots on target. Halliday was one of only three players to start all 17 matches this season.

Coach’s comment: “Adam Halliday anchored the midfield all season, as he did his freshman year (as well). He led the team on and off the field. He was always motivated and prepared and he had a great season.” — Men’s soccer head coach Jared Scarpaci 


Men's soccer season in review:

Final record: 7-10, 0-7 NEWMAC

Best win: Sept. 18: Emerson 3, Lesley 1

The Lions broke through to win the annual Charles River Cup for the first time since 2008, evening up the all-time series at 4-4. Emerson stole the momentum just before the hour mark in a come-from-behind victory. Jeremy Leder headed home in the 58th minute and then Ole Eriksen followed up a minute later to give the host Lions the lead for good. Goalkeeper Carter Bowers made four saves to help hold onto the lead after conceding on a counterattack late in the first half.

Top newcomer: Patrick Kudej

Kudej was the Lions’ only regular freshman starter, getting the nod from Scarpaci in 14 of his 15 appearances, and starting from the first game of the season. Kudej picked up two assists over Emerson’s final seven matches and got off two or more shots in each of the last five matches. Kudej tied with classmate Elais Romanos for the freshman lead with two points.

Outgoing seniors: Alex Sypsomos (team captain, 16 starts), Ole Eriksen (15 starts, seven goals), Jon Havens (13 starts, four goals),  Dan Haber (15 appearances, one assist), Mike Aragon, and Edward Carrillo.