Fall Sports Teams Set to Begin Practices


West Windsor, N.J. - The MCCC athletic program enjoyed a particularly successful year during 2008-09 and the fall sports teams led the way. The three squads - men's and women's soccer and women's tennis - are about to begin practices to prepare for what the Vikings expect will be another banner year.

The men's soccer program gets the ball rolling - figuratively and literally - with its first practice on August 14. Head Coach Charlie Inverso enters his 24th season, with his squad hoping to qualify for the National Junior College Athletic Association Division I Men's Soccer Championship, which Mercer will host November 18-22. The Vikings won their eighth straight Region 19 Tournament title last year en route to finishing 19-3 and third at the national championships.

Some members of the women's soccer team gathered for workouts during the summer. From left are Carolyn Walter, Lauren Sparano, Angelica Modica, Kelsey Capuano, Erika Juricic, Brittany Usarzewicz and Marissa Segal.

Among MCCC's top returning players are forward Amit Abudmad (Israel), an NJCAA First Team All-American in 2008; midfielders Ido Ligity (Israel) and Frank Tweneboa (Pennsauken, N.J.); and defenders Nigel Blair (Fort Lauderdale, Fla.) and Darnell Edwards (Greenbelt, Md.).

The Vikings begin their regular season September 9 at SUNY Ulster. Their first regular season home game is Saturday, Sept. 12 against Monroe CC (NY) at 2 p.m.

The women's soccer program starts practice Monday, August 17 with a number of veteran players from last year's 17-4-1 season when the Vikings won their frist Region 19 Tournament since 2001. Under Head Coach Jodie Ricciardi, who enters her third season, the Vikings ended their 2008 season only one win shy of reaching the national championships, falling to Monroe Community College, 3-2 in overtime, in the District G title game.

Among MCCC's top returning players are forwards Kasey Kenny (Staten Island, N.Y.), an NJCAA Second Team All-American in 2008, and Erica Juricic (East Windsor, N.J.); midfielders Angelica Modica (Manalapan, N.J.) and Carolyn Walters (Hamilton, N.J.); and defender Brittany Usarzewicz (Ewing, N.J).

The Vikings begin their regular season September 5 at Monroe Community College against Cincinnati State. Their first home game will be played Saturday, Sept. 12 against Manor College at 12 noon.

The women's tennis program opens practice under Head Coach Marc Vecchiolla in late August. The 13th-year head coach is blessed with a veteran lineup after last year's squad finished 4-3, captured second place at the Region 19 Tournament and was fifth at the NJCAA Division III National Championship.

MCCC's returning players include Rebecca Wolf (Hopewell, N.J.), a defending champion in the Northeast Regional Flight A doubles and both Region 19 Tournament No. 2 singles and doubles, as well as Maria Eldridge (Lawrence, N.J.), who was the national runner-up at No. 6 singles and an NJCAA Second Team All-American. Kristina Holsman (Hamilton, N.J.) and Emily Dow (West Windsor, N.J.) also are key returnees.

The Vikings begin their regular season September 10 at home (Mercer County Tennis Center) against Brookdale Community College.

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