Photo courtesy of Natalie Capone
Natalie Capone, a captain of the women’s soccer team, expresses concerns about Emory & Henry becoming a Division II college, and, despite these worries, excitement for the new season.
Capone, a junior exercise science major at E&H, worries that due to being a provisional team for Division II, the soccer team will not be eligible for championships. She also worries that motivation on the team, especially in the upperclassmen, will drop without the goal of a championship game in sight.
“Advancing to Division II is exciting, but not necessarily the most important to the team. …We are technically a provisional member of the Division II level. This means we’re kind of in limbo so to speak; we are just trying to find people we can play with this season since we are in an interim year,” Capone says.
Due to the transition from Division III to Division II, E&H is still playing in the Old Dominion Athletic Conference (ODAC) while playing some teams from the South Atlantic Conference (SAC).
Capone spoke on other effects of moving to Division II, as well, including the change providing E&H with more exposure than before. With this new exposure, the women’s soccer team, like other teams on campus, is accepting an increase of first-years to the team.
The newness of the team is another concern of Capone’s, but she says that this new group of girls brings a level of excitement and “good chemistry” to the team. She is also excited about having two new international girls on the team.
One of the things that Capone is most excited for this season is playing against long standing rival, Ferrum College.
“Ferrum has a great program, is a continuous rival, and is close to home, but I think we’ll do well with the caliber of girls and training we have this season,” Capone says.
Although the transition to Division II this season has brought worries and challenges, Capone says, “We plan on giving our all in each game and practice in order to better the team.”