The MAAC is Wide Open in the Wake of Monmouth’s Departure


Santino Maione, Beat Reporter: Women's Soccer

During their time in the MAAC conference, the Monmouth Hawks have dominated almost every season, winning five out of the last six MAAC titles. In the year they didn’t win, they were runner-up to the Siena Saints and, since 2013, Monmouth has won six out of nine MAAC championships. The point is, that this team couldn’t be touched for years. However, this offseason Monmouth took their talents to the Colonial Athletic Association (CAA). 

With their departure, the MAAC is waiting for a new team to fill the void that Monmouth is leaving behind. The Bobcats, along with a few other teams, are primed and ready to be a strong contender to fill that void. 

Quinnipiac head coach Dave Clarke gave his thoughts on the opportunity that awaits his team now that Monmouth is gone.

“Yeah, you got 11 teams that are gonna fancy their chances to win it,” Clarke said. “There’s a long way to the MAAC from where we are so, you don’t wanna be that cliche where you talk about that. But truthfully we got a game Sunday, gotta get the players recovered and focus on that ‘cause every team we duel, today, tomorrow, Saturday, Sunday will be about what we do in September. If we don’t get that right then we’re having this conversation and it’s redundant in a month’s time.” 

The Bobcats know how important these early weeks are during non-conference play. This is their time to work out the kinks and get everything squared away before heading into the dog fight that is conference play. Coach Clarke emphasized that in his statement, reinforcing the idea that if the Bobcats get too ahead of themselves, they could squander their chances of taking their place as the new “Queens of the MAAC.”

Starting goalkeeper, Sophia Lospinoso, also gave her thoughts on Monmouth’s departure.

“I think it was probably the right thing for them to do, I mean they’ve been a powerhouse for a while. You know we obviously are gonna fight for it and I think teams like Siena, Niagara, and Fairfield they’re all in the running so it’s gonna be a fun season,” Lospinoso said.

“Obviously our goal is to win the MAAC and obviously with them leaving, it does leave a gap for a team to fill, a school to fill,” added Rebecca Cooke

Lospinoso and Cooke are absolutely right. This is going to be one of the most fun and exciting seasons we’ve seen in a while. With the increased level of parity and competition, this season is sure to be wild and filled with insane, jaw-dropping moments. Cooke already gave us some mesmerizing moments in the Bobcats 2-1 home win against the Stony Brook Seawolves. She scored both goals, including the go-ahead goal in the 85th minute to help Quinnipiac secure their second win of the season. 

The Bobcats will look to keep this hot start going when they take on their cross-town rivals, the Yale Bulldogs this Sunday. This season is sure to be the most exciting one in recent memory, and Cooke said it best, “I mean, it’s the MAAC, anything could happen!”