DURHAM, N.C. - Duke University held its annual fall sports media today Wednesday. Head coaches and selected student-athletes from the Duke men and women's cross country, soccer, volleyball and field hockey spoke to the media about their preseasons so far and the upcoming seasons.
Men's cross country opened the day with head coach Norm Ogilvie, senior Domenick DeMatteo and junior Brian Atkinson spoke about their upcoming season, which begins Aug. 31 at the Virginia Tech Invitational. Ogilvie welcomes six newcomers to the 2012 program.
Women's cross country head coach Kevin Jermyn and seniors Juliet Bottorf and Madeline Morgan previewed their squad. The Blue Devils start the season Aug. 31 at the Virginia Tech Invitational, while the season will be highlighted by the Wisconsin adidas Invitational October 12.
The second-ranked Duke women's soccer team featured head coach Robbie Church with seniors Kim DeCesare, Nicole Lipp and Libby Jandl. The Blue Devils are the preseason ACC favorite and are 2-0 overall to start the year. Returning all 11 starters from last year's NCAA runner-up squad, Duke faces a tough Florida squad, Aug. 26 at 1 p.m., in Chapel Hill.
Senior Christiana Gray, Nailah Waterfield and Megan Hendrickson joined head coach Jolene Nagel to talk about their young squad. Nagle spoke about the focus she sees in her team this season and how them training together all summer on campus will be evident as the season progresses. The Blue Devils open their 2012 campaign Aug. 24 at 7 p.m., versus William & Mary.
The men's soccer squad, ranked 21st by Soccer America, was represented by head coach John Kerr and captains James Belshaw and Sebastien Ibeagha talked about being leaders on a young squad that features 16 freshmen and sophomores. The Blue Devils, after going 0-1-1 in a pair of tough exhibition contests, kick off the season at Notre Dame Aug. 25 at 7:30 p.m. The men's soccer team also will be starting a new tradition with the official fan club, the Blue Devil Army. Fans can sign up for the club at www.bluedevilarmy.com and they will receive a free t-shirt , soccer scarf and gain admission to the pregame tailgates.
The field hockey squad rounded out the day as head coach Pam Bustin and juniors Emmie LeMarchand and Grace Christus and redshirt junior Devon Gagliardi talked about their challenging schedule this year and the excitement of playing in the ACC. Duke opens the season on the road at Drexel Aug. 24 at Drexel. The Blue Devils open their home schedule Aug. 31 versus Princeton at 6 p.m.