Fall sports are finally upon us. Here’s a look at what Penn’s soccer, volleyball, and field hockey teams are up against this weekend, as many of them suit up for their first games in almost two years.
The women’s soccer team has a head start on every other fall sport, with two games already under its belt. The Quakers (1-0-1) will look to build off their recent 2-1 win over George Mason when they face off at home against UIC (0-2-1) on Thursday and at Hofstra (3-1) on Sunday.
Fans who wish to cheer on the Quakers at Rhodes Field must prove their COVID-19 vaccination status, and will be required to wear face coverings.
The men’s soccer team will open its season this Friday at Fairleigh Dickinson (1-1). The Knights have already played two matches, dropping their contest to NJIT, 4-1, and besting Army, 1-0.
Friday will mark the first game not only for Penn’s 16 recruits, but also for the two new additions to the coaching staff. Matt Poplawski, who formerly served as captain of Penn men’s soccer, and Ryan Sandell were named assistant coaches last month.
The Quakers have several non-conference games in the coming weeks to find their footing before Ivy League play starts in October.
Volleyball will host the Sheraton University City Volleyball Invitational at the Palestra this weekend. First up, the Quakers will take on Bucknell (2-1) on Friday, and then face off against Canisius (0-3) on Saturday morning, followed by Coppin State (1-2) that evening.
Although each of their three opponents have already competed in three games this season, the Quakers will be looking to prove themselves on their home court.
Penn volleyball has had a longer hiatus than most other Penn sports, after its 2019 season was cut short following the administration's discovery of "vulgar, offensive, and disrespectful posters" in the team's locker room.
Despite having her position for more than a year, Friday will mark the first official game for head coach Meredith Schamun, who joined the coaching staff in March 2020. Also making their debuts will be assistant coaches Evan Feltz and Trevor Weiskircher.
Penn field hockey will be competing in the ACC/Ivy League Conference Crossover in Princeton, N.J. against some stiff competition. The Quakers’ two ACC opponents include No. 5 Louisville (2-0) on Friday and No. 1 UNC (0-2) on Sunday.
The Red and Blue will be led by a trio of newly-minted captains: Gracyn Banks, Maddy Fagan and Madison Jiranek. Banks is coming off a summer where she was selected to compete in the U-22 Junior Pan American Championship, where she won Bronze and qualified for the Junior World Cup.
Starting this weekend, the Red and Blue will have the opportunity to improve upon their 2019 season, where they lost all six of their games against ranked opponents.