Fall Sports Preview
Last fall, most Packer sports teams had successful seasons, winning a number of championships in their leagues (ACIS and AAIS) as well as success in NYSAIS. This year, Packer’s teams are working to continue to live up to their achievements from last fall and bring their accomplishments into this year’s season.
Varsity Girls Soccer:
Last season, the Varsity Girls Soccer team won both the ACIS and AAIS leagues, and placed third seed in NYSAIS. Although six key seniors were lost, the varsity girls soccer team is still confident in their ability.
Sydney Nhambiu (‘20), a junior captain of the team, stated that one of her goals is to “learn to be a leader while getting to know each one of my team members, because that is the beauty of being between grades. You’re not so distant from the freshman, but you’re also close enough to senior year to start to think about being a leader and to guide other people with your experience.” Sydney also said that the team is hoping to win both the ACIS and AAIS leagues and to make it further than last year in NYSAIS, when they lost in the quarter finals.
The team’s new coach, Najja Plowden, agreed, saying that he “wants perfection and the best that we can do. I don’t want to aim for anything less because I feel as if I would be doing a disservice to the girls as well as to myself.”
Varsity Boys Soccer:
This year, the Varsity Boys Soccer team is looking to improve upon their already impressive prior season in which they won the ACIS league and tournament.
Julian Juanterena (‘19), captain of the team, is excited to see what the season brings, saying that he wants to “win the league, the playoffs, and to go undefeated again”.
Dante Mastropietro (‘20) starts alongside Julian and feels similarly, explaining that “we are expecting to go undefeated in both the AAIS and ACIS leagues and win the state tournament”.
On September 5th, the team beat one of Packer’s most competitive rivals, Poly Prep, 2-1. This was an important game to win, as it gave the team confidence going into the subsequent games.
Junior Varsity Girls Soccer:
The Junior Varsity Girls Soccer team won 7 out of the 9 games last season. This year, they have built on last year’s success and are currently undefeated.
Everyone on the team believes that there is a good team dynamic. Maryam Haque, a freshman who starts in center midfield, says that the main goals of the team are to “continue to work as hard as we have been, and to continue to grow and develop as individuals, but most importantly, as a team.”
Jojo Sampson, the starting goalie of the team, agreed, but also added that “it’s frustrating not being in a league. If we did have a league, we would definitely win.”
Junior Varsity Boys Soccer:
Last year, the Boys Junior Varsity Soccer team went undefeated and were the champions of the ACIS league. They are looking to do the same this season.
Although the team did lose a substantial amount of players to the varsity team, Coach Jon Vaughn said that they “have some great new kids who show great signs of developing and leadership. The team is brilliant and I could not ask for a better bunch.”
Captain Alex Bourtin (‘21) agreed, saying “we have a very exciting team to watch and I believe our team is bound for success.”
Varsity Girls Volleyball:
Although the Varsity Girls Volleyball team had a winning record last year, they were unable to win their league or any tournaments. They look to change that this year.
Captain Hannah Goncher (‘19) said that this year the team has the potential to go further in both leagues.
“We just have to put in the work,” she said. Hannah has played on the varsity team for all four years and believes that the team has gotten increasingly closer with one another. “This year we get along really well and know each other really well, and I think it’s going to make for a good season.”
Junior Varsity Girls Volleyball:
Last year, the Junior Varsity Girls Volleyball team were undefeated champions in the ACIS league. As of late September, they had a record of 2-2.
In their first game, the team easily beat Friends Seminary, but did so with little effort and determination. However, Georgia said that in the second game, they “came together, were aggressive, communicative, and just played as a solid team. Our synergy and teamwork in that game is something to which I will refer for the rest of the season – it really set the basis for the kind of team I want us to be.”
Varsity Cross Country:
The Varsity Cross Country team has participated in a number of meets so far, including one that required them to travel as far as Pennsylvania. Varsity XC is a dedicated and talented team, to say the least.
“We should expect a top three finish in NYSAIS and a clean sweep in ACIS,” said runner Chaz Saferstein (‘20). “Last year, the team finished fifth in NYSAIS and we are looking to improve that placement.”
Annabel Barnett (‘20), a team captain, said that she wants to further the girls team. “This is the first time we’ve had this many girls on the team, and I think that we should look forward to improving our placement in the ACIS league by working together,” she said.
The Varsity Cross Country has been continuously asking the athletics department for more representation.