/Montevallo athletics enjoying early season success
Montevallo men's soccer team

Montevallo athletics enjoying early season success

The fall semester has brought a 4-0 winning streak for the men’s soccer team. Photo courtesy of UM Athletics.

Montevallo’s men’s soccer team is nationally ranked 24th after a perfect 4-0 start to the new season. Coach Bruce Dietterle has brought in many new faces and it has led to instant success. Freshman forward Oliver Cylkowski has picked up three goals in four matches, and in-coming goalkeeper Robert Kuta has picked up Peach Belt Goalkeeper of the Week awards in successive weeks. Another freshman, Liam Moore, has scored two in his debut season. With the return of Jeff Hessenburger, who also has two goals to his name, the Falcons have found the goal threat that was missing last season. It has also been a great start for the defense. The Falcons kept a clean sheet in their last match, a 2-0 win over Shorter. Freshman Austin Petrovich has looked composed since joining returning senior Steven Rocca in defense. The latter picked up this week’s Peach Belt Defender of the Week award.

Since opening with a 2-1 win over Lincoln Memorial in Columbus, the Falcons took down in-state rival West Alabama in double overtime by a score of 3-2. They found themselves down twice, and battled back to claim a second straight overtime victory over the Tigers. They followed this game up with the home opener against UAH. Oliver Cylkowski’s second goal of the season was the overtime winner against the Chargers. After the win over Shorter on Saturday, the Falcons have their conference schedule in their sights. They take on Francis Marion on Saturday, before the home conference opener next week on the 21st when they face Young Harris.

Robert Lane’s second season in charge of the women’s soccer team has brought about a resurgence in the team. Starting six freshman in both of the first two games, the Falcons have impressed, especially the new defensive midfield combination of Vic Whitehouse and Val Visaggio. Freshman goalkeeper Judith Perez-Bayon has looked solid in the opening two matches as well. In the opening day 3-1 win over Delta State, the Falcons debuted their new forward duo of freshman Michaila Franklin and Tylor Ring. The two have been joined by Hampton Brinson, Haley Bouler and Simone Nelson, who claimed her first Falcon goal in the opening win over the Lady Statesmen. This week’s matches against Faulkner and Francis Marion will be followed up by Shorter’s visit to Montevallo on Monday.

Montevallo’s volleyball team opened their 2016 season with a 5-3 record in two tournaments over the past two weekends. Katie O’Brien’s 9th year at the helm has begun brightly. The resilience of the Falcons has been tested, as they have proved themselves in three five-set victories. Junior Kristy Bohan opened the first eight games with a staggering 143 kills, which led to her being named the Peach Belt Player of the Week. The conference schedule heats up this weekend, with contests against Georgia College and Augusta in Trustmark Arena this Friday and Saturday.

The Falcon Classic for the men’s and women’s cross-country teams takes place in Montevallo this weekend. The team performed admirably in the opening meet, the Furman Classic. The men’s team finished 5th and their performance was highlighted by Donny Barnes’ 8K time of 26:04, which is the fifth-fastest in program history. The women took home the team championship, with Cheyenne Thompson claiming the individual title. Her time of 21:46 saw her win the Peach Belt’s Runner of the Week Award. The Falcons had four runners in the top 10 and five in the top 20 en route to an opening meet victory.

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