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New Women’s Soccer Coach Looking to Grow Program

The 2006 Wildcat women's soccer teamIn an effort to rebuild a women’s soccer program that won conference championships in its first two years of existence, but has fallen on tougher times over the past three seasons, Pennsylvania College of Technology has turned to new coach Kim Antanitis.

A graduate of and soccer player at Benton High School and Lycoming College she was a team captain at Lycoming during her final two years Antanitis spent the past two seasons coaching, and helping turn around, the girls basketball program at Columbia-Montour Vo-Tech.

“The program is in need of getting turned around for a successful season, getting girls energized and involved and getting a winning attitude,” Antanitis said of the task she and assistant coach Mark Wetherhold face at Penn College.

“We’re struggling with numbers, getting girls out for the team. With only 12 players, we don’t have subs and it makes practicing hard with drills and just being able to scrimmage,” Antanitis said.

“We’re looking to get wins and have a positive season, but we’re looking at this as a building year to try to get the girls to understand that, as coaches, we are dedicated to the program and would like to see the program grow and get more girls involved,” the coach said.

Returning Lady Wildcats are goalie Kim Carbaugh (junior/Jonestown), midfielder Justine Wareham (sophomore/Hollidaysburg), midfielder-striker Gabriela Rinke (sophomore/Campinas, Brazil), midfielder-defender Alyssa Giedroc (sophomore/Howard) and midfielder-defender Marilyn Caldwell (junior/Winston-Salem, N.C.). Caldwell, however, won’t be with the team until the end of the month.

Newcomers on whom Antanitis is counting are defender Maggie Powers (freshman/Granville Summit), midfielder-striker Blair Smith (freshman/South Williamsport), defender Tiffany Madara (freshman/Paxinos), midfielder-wing Lauren Covatta (freshman/Reading), midfielder Carrie Meyer (freshman/Ashland, Wisc.), midfielder-striker Ashley Janoka (freshman/Shamokin) and wing-striker Sarah Coulbourn (freshman/Elysburg).

Antanitis looks for leadership from her returnees, especially Carbaugh and Wareham, and expects Powers to run the defense and Meyer, who also is a backup goalie, to help control the midfield and attack the goal.

“Right now, even having 12 players, it doesn’t sound like a lot, but our motto is ‘Quality, not quantity.’ (Numbers) are up from last year and, having made it through the first two weeks of practice and knowing that we have 12 girls, not seven or eight, that’s a positive,” Antanitis said.

Eyeing Saturday’s nonconference season opener at Davis College, Antanitis said, “We’re looking to go out and feel it out, see how we do. It’s hard for us to (know) what’s going to happen because it’s going to be the first time we play 11 on a side of the field. It will be nice to get that in and under our belts, and then we’ll definitely take steps from there.”

The Lady Wildcats begin Penn State University Athletic Conference play Sept. 20 at Penn State Harrisburg. Their only competition in the Eastern Pennsylvania Collegiate Conference is Manor College.

Complete rosters and season schedules are available on the college’s Athletics Web site .

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