NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Vanderbilt soccer delivered a perfect finish to the 2019 spring season after defeating Kennesaw State, 4-0, on Sunday at the Vanderbilt track field.
“Overall, I was very happy with the effort and progress we made,” head coach Darren Ambrose said. “Our game performances included some spectacular moments and some that we would like to forget, but that’s part of spring. We learned a little bit more about the group and capabilities they have and areas we may need to tweak in the fall.”
The Commodores finished the spring with a 6-0-0 record and posted four shutouts while outscoring their opponents by a 15-3 margin.
Sunday’s game against Kennesaw State also wrapped up an alumni weekend that saw several former Commodores come back for a weekend of activities.
“It was a really fun weekend and at the end of the day it all still has to be fun,” Ambrose said. “It was great to meet some of the former players that I didn’t get to coach and of course seeing some of the recent grads from the last two or three years was really nice. Overall just seeing so many eras all wearing Vanderbilt jerseys playing together was a really cool experience.”
There were also several performances from freshmen that stood out to Ambrose.
“Reagan Kelly really built off of the fall she had,” Ambrose said. “She was very consistent in everything she did. She grew her role in games and added a little more to our attacking abilities.
“Peyton Cutshall also grew in her role. She showed she could impact games and her success in practice early on was very noticeable. We have high hopes she will continue to bring her intensity and competitive mindset this fall.”
Ambrose said he was also pleased with the play from two of his veterans, as well.
“Of our returning players it was good to see Grace Jackson and Nia Dorsey continue to perform at a high level on a daily basis,” Ambrose said. “It’s easy to step off the gas a little in the spring. But they didn’t, and as a result they held the bar high for others.”
The Commodores produced a combined seven goals in their last two spring games, adding to a defeat of Alabama (3-2) on April 7.
The Commodores also notched victories at Lipscomb on (1-0), Memphis (2-1), Middle Tennessee (2-0) and Western Kentucky (3-0).
Vanderbilt’s wins against MTSU and Lipscomb on March 30 earned the Dores the title of Music City College Cup Champions.
Vanderbilt two team captains, goalkeeper Lauren Demarchi and defender Dorsey, were encouraged by the team’s performance this spring.
“I think this spring went super well,” Demarchi said. “It gave us all some time to improve individual weaknesses, and it gave us a chance to play together against some good teams. That made me really excited to be back and ready to go in the fall.”
“This was our first spring season that we were undefeated, which was so cool because it shows that can find a way to win,” Dorsey added. “As we just finished lift testing in the weight room, a lot of girls hit their goals so a lot of growth has occurred in the last few months. I’m super excited for our next season based on the fight and enthusiasm that we showed this spring.”