Mercy Mavericks Soccer Season Recap


The Mavericks goalkeeper had an excellent year in goal

What a year it was for both the Men’s and Women’s soccer teams.  As a matter of fact, the Women’s season is not quite done yet since their impressive season landed the team a berth in the NCAA Division II Women’s Soccer Championship. The Lady Mavericks will be facing Adelphi on Friday at Saint Rose at 12:00 PM in the first round of the tournament.

For both teams though, even though the men’s season ended shorter than I am sure they would have liked, have to be looked at as a success.  Up to this point, the combined record of the two teams is an astounding 24- 8- 5.  Separately, the men’s team finished with a record of 11-4-4, while the women have a record of 13-4-1, with at least one more game remaining on the season.

On the Men’s side. it would be hard to imagine where the team would have been without the outstanding goalkeeping of Senior Nick Pappas.  Al throughout the season, Pappas was awarded numerous awards for his stellar play, with awards including goalkeeper of the week,  being named to the ECC weekly honor roll, and perhaps the biggest award of them all, being named the ECC Goalkeeper of the year, and making the ECC first team. What a year it was for Pappas, who saved an incredible 81 shots with a save percentage of .835, which was ranked 20th in the entire nation for goalkeepers.  Pappas averaged a measly 0.84 goals against this year, and had eight shutouts, and tied a Mercy record with 15 shutouts throughout his entire career.

Another player who had an impressive season for the Mavericks was Sophomore Christian Diaz. Diaz was the leading goal scorer on the team, netting 7 goals, and also led the team in total points with 17. What makes these numbers even more impressive is that Diaz was still able to have a solid season despite missing four games earlier in the season due to injury, and playing limited minutes in two.  Diaz was named to the ECC Second team due to his strong play all season. The future is very bright for Diaz and the Mavericks, and coach Chris Smith agrees.  Smith said ” Coming into the season one of our goals was to stay In the NSCAA East Region Rankings every week of the season.  We accomplished that, took the top team in the conference to the wire in both games, including the ECC Championship, and made a great run at the NCAA Championship against some programs with really great histories too.  We will be going into next year with similar expectations, and hopefully we’ve raised the bar that much higher with our past success”.  What Coach Smith said is exactly true, the future is bright for the Mercy Mavericks Men’s Soccer team.

For the Mavericks women’s soccer team, it has been a season I am sure none of the ladies on the team will forget. Their season is still going on after such a strong regular season, and they know focus their attention on the NCAA Division II Championship games.  Without a strong regular season though, the Mavericks would not be in this position. To start off the season, the team rattled of six straight victories against quality opponents.  So far this year. the team has outscored their opponents by a score of 37-16. A reason the team has been so successful is due to the consistent strong play on the roster.

The Mavericks had four players on the team named to the All-East Coast Conference team.  Senior Crystal Mena, Juniors Jessica Carrillo and Abby Zielinski were named to the first team, while Senior Jennifer Vega was awarded to the second team.  Carrillo led the Mavericks in goals scored with six, and points with 17, and was also tied for the team lead in assists with 5.  Zielinski did a bit of everything for the team, Vega was tied for second on the team in point with 13, and Mena was the defensive stopper for the team, even earning ECC Defensive Player of the week honors during the season, and also scored two huge game winners this season.

The Mavericks coach Jonathan Feinstein also had himself a very impressive year. Feinstein was a named the ECC Coach of the Year.  When asked about the season so far, Feinstein said that ” We thought we had a team that could do something really special entering the year,  and making the finals of the ECC Championship, and the NCAA Championship has made this an incredible year. It’s one thing to put the work in over the preseason, pulling out the close games and even taking a few tough losses, but until we saw our name in the bracket, I’m not sure what we had done had hit anyone yet.  Now we’re focused on our trip to Albany to face Adelphi and hopefully Saint Rose, and I think this year has done a lot for the program going forward”.

What a year it has been for both the Men’s team, and the Women’s team. The future is bright fir the Men’s team, and the Women’s team has the chance to do something very, very special to wrap up this season.