The William Smith College soccer team is the new No. 1 team in the nation according to both the United Soccer Coaches and D3soccer.com polls. The Herons moved up one spot in the coaches poll and jumped two spots and received all 23 first place votes in D3soccer.com’s ranking.
The Herons are 4-0-0 to start the season and are coming off a 2-1 win at Geneseo on Saturday. Juniors Sheila McQuillen and Merilyn Hinrichs scored in the second half for William Smith. Sophomore Amanda Kesler played all 90 minutes in goal and made a pair of saves. Hinrichs’ game-winning strike earned her a spot on the Liberty League weekly honor roll.
The Herons will take on Misericordia Sept. 18, at 4:30 p.m. on Cozzens Field. The match will be the fourth all-time between the two teams. William Smith holds a 2-1 edge in the series and won the lone meeting in Geneva 3-1 in 2017.
First-year Seneca Blakely-Armitage leads William Smith with five points on two goals and an assist. Hinrichs and junior Maialen Martinez also have two goals. Kesler has played every minute in goal this season. She is 4-0-0 with a 0.24 goals against average and .900 save percentage. Kesler’s goals against average is 16th in the nation.
The Cougars bring a 3-2-0 record into the match on Sept. 18. Misericordia opened the season with three straight wins but has dropped its last two contests. The Cougars were shutout by Arcadia 3-0 on Saturday. Kendall Pearage leads the team with three goals and eight points. Jenna Orfanos has a team-high four assists. Orfanos is 15th in the nation in assists and 19th in assists per game (0.8). Alexi Benedetto has played every minute in goal. She is 3-2-0 with a 1.29 GAA and a .739 save percentage.