August 29, 2018

OPENING STATEMENT: Princeton University women’s soccer player Mimi Asom, left, battles a foe in a game last season. Last weekend, senior forward Asom tallied two game-winning goals as 14th-ranked Princeton started the season by going to New England and beating University of New Hampshire 2-0 last Friday and edging Boston University 1-0 two days later. The Tigers host St. Joseph’s (3-0-1) on August 31 in its home opener and then welcome No. 16 N.C. State (3-0-1) two days later. (Photo by Frank Wojciechowski)

By Bill Alden

It was just the first weekend of the season, but the Princeton University women’s soccer team proved it can win in different ways.

In its season opener at the University of New Hampshire last Friday, the 14th-ranked Tigers outshot the Wildcats 21-2 on the way to a 2-0 win. Two days later at Boston University, Princeton had to hold the fort as it was outshot 12-7 but was able to pull out a 1-0 victory.

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CHINESE LESSON: Ian McNally, left, instructs players at a camp in China this summer. Hun School boys’ hockey head coach and former Princeton University player McNally took part in the ECAC Hockey/Princeton camps in Beijing and Shenzhen, near Hong Kong.

By Bill Alden

Ron Fogarty helped guide the Princeton University men’s hockey team from the ECAC Hockey cellar to the NCAA tournament, while Ian McNally has built the Hun School boys’ program into a local powerhouse as it has won five straight Mercer County Tournament titles.

This July, the two coaches flew nearly 7,000 miles across the world to help grow the game they love as they took part in the ECAC Hockey/Princeton camp in China.

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August 22, 2018

GOOD SHEPPARD: Princeton University women’s soccer player Olivia Sheppard goes after the ball in a game last year. Junior midfielder/defender Sheppard’s versatility makes her a key performer for the Tigers. Princeton kicks off its 2018 campaign by playing at the University of New Hampshire on August 24. (Photo by Frank Wojciechowski)

By Bill Alden

Sparked by an uncommon competitive fire, the Princeton University women’s soccer defeated Monmouth, N.C. State, and perennial powerhouse North Carolina in the NCAA tournament last fall as it surged to national quarterfinals.

As Princeton head coach Sean Driscoll looks ahead to the 2018 campaign, he is hoping that his squad, which starts the season ranked 13th nationally, can rekindle that intensity. more

SAVING GRACE: Grace Barbara makes a save as she trains for her freshman season for the Princeton University women’s soccer team. Former Princeton Day School standout goalie Barbara started preseason training last week for the Tigers as they prepare to open their 2018 season with a game at New Hampshire on August 24.

By Bill Alden

Grace Barbara knew before entering high school that she would have plenty of options when it came to playing soccer in college.

“My recruiting process really started in 8th grade; I was getting pressured by a lot of D-I schools to commit in my freshman year,” said Barbara, who starred at goalie from day one when she joined the Princeton Day School girls’ soccer team as a freshman in 2014. “A lot of kids these days are trying to jump on their first offer.” more

HIT SONG: Andrew Song heads up the field this past spring in his freshman season for the Princeton University men’s lacrosse team. After earning honorable mention All-Ivy League recognition at longstick midfielder in his debut campaign, Song competed for China this summer at the FIL (Federation of International Lacrosse) World Championships in Netanya, Israel. (Photo by Brian McWalters, Courtesy of Princeton’s Office of Athletic Communications)

By Bill Alden

Andrew Song proved that he could excel on the big stage as the Princeton University men’s lacrosse team battled University of Virginia this past February.

In the second game of his college career, Tiger freshman longstick midfielder Song contributed one goal, three ground balls, two caused turnovers and two face-off wins to go along with some spirited defense against a high-powered Cavalier attack in an 18-15 loss. more

August 15, 2018

BLUE CHIP: Eric Robinson heads up the ice as he made his NHL debut for the Columbus Blue Jackets this past April. Former Princeton University men’s hockey star Robinson, who helped the Tigers win the ECAC Hockey title this winter in his final season with the program, is now preparing for training camp as he looks to make the Blue Jackets. The team starts training camp next month with its first preseason game slated for September 17 against Buffalo.(Photo by John Russell, Courtesy of the Columbus Blue Jackets and Princeton’s Office of Athletic Communications)

By Bill Alden

Eric Robinson didn’t have much time to dwell on the disappointment of seeing his career with the Princeton University men’s hockey team end with a 4-2 loss to Ohio State in the NCAA tournament.

Two days after the defeat on March 24 in the first round of the national tourney, star forward Robinson followed the Buckeyes to Ohio as he signed a contract with the Columbus Blue Jackets of the NHL and joined the pro team on Monday. more

HEADING EAST: Dustin Litvak surveys the action during his time as an assistant water polo coach at UCLA. Southern California native Litvak is coming east to become the head coach of the Princeton University men’s water polo team and serve as an assistant for the Tiger women’s water polo program.(Photo Courtesy of Princeton’s Office of Athletic Communications)

By Bill Alden

Dustin Litvak was living the dream of thousands around Los Angeles, landing a job with Jimmy Kimmel Live! shortly after graduating from Pepperdine University in 2001.

Starting as an intern, Litvak rose to production assistant for the hit show, running its green room and hoping to get into the writing side.

But Litvak turned his back on Hollywood in 2003 to follow his love for water polo, having coached the boys’ squad at his high school alma mater, Agoura High, in the L.A. area while he was in college. more

August 8, 2018

CAPTAIN AMERICA: Tom Schreiber handling the ball for Team USA last month at the FIL (Federation of International Lacrosse) World Championships in Netanya, Israel. Star midfielder Schreiber, a 2014 Princeton alum who scored 200 points in his Tiger career, scored a goal with one second to play to give the United States a 9-8 win over Canada in the gold medal game at the competition. Finishing the seven-game tournament with 13 goals and eight assists, Schreiber was named to the All-World Team and as the Outstanding Midfielder of the tourney.(Photo by Adam Scott/US Lacrosse)

By Bill Alden

It appeared that Tom Schreiber squandered a golden opportunity to be the hero as the U.S. men’s national team battled Canada in the final at the FIL (Federation of International Lacrosse) World Lacrosse Championship last month.

With the rivals locked in an 8-8 deadlock and five seconds remaining in regulation of the July 21 contest in Netanya, Israel, former Princeton University star midfielder Schreiber misfired on a good look in the crease, missing a point blank shot. more

ON THE STICK: Princeton University field hockey star Elise Wong guards the back line in a game last season. Rising senior defender Wong spent much of her summer training with the U.S. national program and was recently chosen to play on the U.S. U-21 team for another year. Wong and the Tigers will start preseason practice next week and open 2018 regular season play with a game against North Carolina on August 31 in Philadelphia, Pa. (Photo by Frank Wojciechowski)

By Bill Alden

Over the last several years, Elise Wong hasn’t had much time to relax over the summer months.

Since emerging as a field hockey star at Lake Forest High (Ill.), Wong, who is headed into her senior season at Princeton University, has been involved with various U.S. teams, training over the summer with the national program as she has moved up the ranks.

Defensive star Wong played for the U-17 junior national team from 2012-15, for the U-19 national team in 2015-16 and is now a member of the U-21 squad. more

August 1, 2018

SILVER STREAK: Emily Kallfelz competes in a race in the Princeton University women’s open varsity eight this spring. Last weekend, rising senior Kallfelz took second in the single sculls at the U-23 World Championships in Poznan, Poland.(Photo provided courtesy of Princeton’s Office of Athletic Communications)

By Bill Alden

Emily Kallfelz enjoyed success in rowing before she ever got on the water.

Making her debut as a high school junior in the sport by competing in the 2014 Crash-B, an indoor rowing event based on ergometer times, Kallfelz placed eighth.

“I did a bunch of sports beforehand, soccer, swimming, sailing, and I did some triathlons when I was younger,” said Kallfelz, a native of Jamestown R.I., who was a multi-sport star at St. George’s School. more

NATIONAL PRESENCE: Cat Caro, right, goes after the ball in the fall of 2016 during her senior season on the Princeton University field hockey team. After earning Ivy League Offensive Player of the Year honors and getting named as a first-team All-American that season, Caro joined the U.S. Women’s National Team shortly after her graduation in June, 2017. This year, she has made 11 appearances for the U.S. squad, notching her first goal for the squad against Chile in a test series this April. (Photo by Frank Wojciechowski)

By Bill Alden

Over her career with the Princeton University field hockey team, Cat Caro patiently worked her way up the ranks of the squad.

In her first three seasons with the Tigers, she scored a total of 18 goals in gradually gaining a bigger role in the team’s offense. As a senior in the fall of 2016, she emerged as the focal point of the attack, scoring 18 goals on the way to being voted as the Ivy League Offensive Player of the Year, getting named as a first-team All-American, and helping the Tigers advance to the NCAA Final 4. more

July 25, 2018

LETTING IT FLY: Chad Kanoff lofts a pass for the Arizona Cardinals during a training session this spring. The former star Princeton University quarterback signed with the Cardinals as an undrafted free agent and is starting training camp with the team this week in Glendale, Ariz. (Photo Courtesy of the Arizona Cardinals)

By Bill Alden

When the Arizona Cardinals chose talented but volatile UCLA quarterback Josh Rosen with the 10th pick in the NFL Draft this spring, it ensured a closely-watched battle at the high-profile position.

With the franchise having previously signed NFL veterans Sam Bradford and Mike Glennon in the wake of the retirement of longtime starter Carson Palmer, there didn’t seem to be room for another QB. more

ON COURSE: A view of the third hole at the Springdale Golf Club, which is hosting the American Junior Golf Association (AJGA) Championship from July 30-August 1. The field of the event includes 71 of the top boy and girl junior players in the country. (Photo Courtesy of Springdale Golf Club)

By Bill Alden

For Stuart Francis, the lessons he learned spending hours around the Springdale Golf Club while competing for the Princeton University men’s golf team in the early 1970s changed the course of his life.

“We had a team of very good players; like all Princeton student athletes, they worked hard on their game and hard academically,” said Francis, a 1974 Princeton alum who was the co-captain of the Tigers his senior year, helping the team win the Ivy League title and earning All-Ivy and All-American honors. more

July 18, 2018

ON THE BALL: Zach Currier chases down the ball in a 2017 game during his senior season with the Princeton University men’s lacrosse team. This week, star midfielder Currier is playing for Canada at the FIL (Federation of International Lacrosse) World Championships in Netanya, Israel. Currier has contributed two goals and an assist to help Canada to go 3-1 to start group play as it looks to defend its title. The semis are slated for July 19 with the championship game scheduled for July 21. (Photo by Frank Wojciechowski)

Zach Currier’s combination of versatility and grit helped make him one of the more uniquely productive players in the history of Princeton University men’s lacrosse history.

During his senior season in the spring of 2017, star midfielder Currier, a 6’0, 180-pound native of Peterborough, Ontario, produced 24 goals, 34 assists, 130 ground balls, a team-best 27 caused turnovers, and a 57 percent winning percentage on face-offs for the Tigers.

Moving up to Major League Lacrosse (MLL) that summer to join the Denver Outlaws, Currier continued to be a dynamic playmaker, earning All-Star honors and helping the Outlaws advance to the MLL championship game.

Over the winter, Currier emerged as one of the top rookies in the indoor National Lacrosse League with the Calgary Roughnecks.

This week, Currier is displaying his skill set and tenacity on an international stage, playing for team Canada in the FIL (Federation of International Lacrosse) World Championships in Netanya, Israel.

“It is something I have dreamed about, being able to represent Canada,” said Currier, who has contributed two goals and an assist so far in the tournament to help Canada to go 3-1 to start group play as it looks to defend its title.

“I have done it at U19 level but that is playing with boys. Now that I am able to do it on the men’s level, it is huge. I am really happy for it. It is definitely one of the biggest accomplishments in my lacrosse career, something that I hope can turn into a gold medal.”

Moving up to the MLL helped Currier raise the level of his game. “Making the transition was tough, especially with the shot clock and the skill level, of course,” said Currier, who is based in Michigan where he works full-time for Warrior Sports as a product development engineer focusing on improving lacrosse stick design.

“But with my box background, being able to play fast and being able to adapt to new positions, that helped me. There was an adjustment period for sure but the great coaching staff helped me along the way.”

Going indoors for the NLL was an easier transition for Currier. “I definitely had an edge on most of the younger crowd who got drafted just straight out of high school,” said Currier.

“You go from playing lacrosse at whatever level you are to playing to the best in the world. There are some guys in this league that are just out of this world in terms of skills. You have got to be at your best to try to stop them from scoring. They are going to get their goals and you try to limit them.”

Looking ahead to the world championships, Currier saw taking care of the ball as a key to success for Canada.
“I think possession is critical at the international level,” said Currier. “There is no shot clock, there is no time limit to clear the ball. That is going to be huge, just being able to play hard and make stops when we need to and score goals when we need to. A lot of it is timing.”

Currier’s scrappy, do-everything style should come in handy with the emphasis on ball possession.

“I am hoping to do all the dirty work for my teammates,” said Currier. “There are so many skilled guys on my team. I am not going to be able to score as well as they can but I can pick up a ground ball and I can get them the ball and make sure that our defense gets a rest and stuff like that. The biggest part of my game is that I will be able to contribute is picking up the ball, working hard on the defensive end and in transition, and making sure that our team gets as many possessions as we can.”

Although Canada topped the U.S. 8-5 in the 2014 Worlds final, Currier knows that the squad can’t take anything for granted as it goes for a repeat.

“No matter how many times we win this thing, we will always come in as underdogs because of how strong the U.S.A. team is,” said Currier, who tallied a goal as Canada fell 11-10 to the U.S. last Sunday in a group play matchup.

“I think that is an advantage for us because we have nothing to lose. If we go in there and play our best and the U.S.A. beats us, then our hats are off to them. But we are going to do out best to make sure that doesn’t happen.”

July 11, 2018

FAMILY TIES: Tom Schreiber heads to goal during his career with the Princeton University men’s lacrosse team. Schreiber, a 2014 Princeton alum who scored 200 points for the Tigers on 106 goals and 94 assists who has gone on to star in Major league Lacrosse, will be playing for the U.S. national team at the FIL (Federation of International Lacrosse) World Championships in Netanya, Israel from July 12-21. Schreiber is following in a family tradition at the competition as his father, Doug, played for the U.S. squad that won the gold medal at the 1974 Worlds in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Frank Wojciechowski)

By Bill Alden

In 1974, University of Maryland men’s lacrosse star Doug Schreiber helped the U.S. national team win the gold medal at the FIL (Federation of International Lacrosse) Men’s Lacrosse World Championship in Melbourne, Australia. more

CATCHING ON: Paul Franzoni is taking control at catcher this spring in his freshman season for New Jersey Institute of Technology’s Division I baseball program. Franzoni, a former Princeton Day School standout, enjoyed a superb debut campaign for NJIT, hitting .271 and earning ASUN (Atlantic Sun Conference) All-Freshman team honors to help the Highlanders go 22-25 overall and 9-12 ASUN on the way to making the league’s postseason tournament. (Photo by Mike McLaughlin Photography for New Jersey Institute of Technology, Courtesy of NJIT Sports Information)

By Bill Alden

Surveying his options as he went through the college baseball recruiting process, Paul Franzoni concluded that the New Jersey Institute of Technology offered a range of opportunities that he couldn’t pass up. more

SELECT CLUB: Members of the Princeton Football Club (PFC) Boca 2002B team celebrate after they won the 16U title at the U.S. Club Soccer Mid-Atlantic Regional earlier this month in Somerset. PFC defeated PDA South Suarez 2-0 in the title game to earn a trip to the U.S. Club Soccer Nationals in Aurora, Colo. later this month. The PFC team includes Princeton High students Jared Bell, Brendan Coffee, Rafael Matar Grandi, Dylan Parker, Ethan Parker, Simon Sheppard, Noah LaPoint, and Ian Pompliano, along with Peter Sarsfield of Princeton Day School, Jakob Kunzer of Lawrenceville School, Xavier Guerreiro and Aron Szoke of Council Rock High North (Pa.), Herbert Ramirez and Brendan Sagbo from Hightstown High, Daniel Ingersoll of South Hunterdon, and Connor Staples from WW/P-South.

By Bill Alden

The Princeton Football Club (PFC) Boca 2002B team didn’t have to travel far to compete in the U.S. Club Soccer Mid-Atlantic Regional, as the competition was held in nearby Somerset.

But after surviving a gauntlet of tough foes in games played in a heat wave, the PFC 16U squad earned a trip of around 1,750 miles as it won the regional crown in its division to qualify for the U.S. Club Soccer Nationals in Aurora, Colo. more

July 3, 2018

WORLD CLASS: Obiageri Amaechi competes in the discus this spring for the Princeton University women’s track team during her freshman season. After a superb debut campaign which saw her break the school record several times and finish seventh at the NCAA Championships to earn first-team All-American honors, Amaechi placed first at the USA Track & Field Junior Championships with a personal best and Ivy League record heave of 186’11. Amaechi will now compete in the IAAF World U20 Championship in Tampere, Finland from July 10-15. (Photo by Beverly Schaefer, Courtesy of Princeton’s Office of Athletic Communications)

By Bill Alden

Obiageri Amaechi focused on sprinting and jumping events when she started her high school track career as a freshman in 2013.

While Amaechi mainly did the 100, 200, 4×100 relay, long jump, and high jump competing for Abraham Lincoln High in San Francisco, she did start dabbling in the discus and shot put. more

TOP DOG: Chris Fake carries the ball up the field for the Yale University men’s lacrosse team as it battled Duke in the NCAA championship game. Former Hun School star Fake helped the Bulldogs top Duke 13-11 in the title game to earn the program’s first national title. Fake emerged as a defensive star this spring, getting named as the Ivy League Rookie of the Year, making 1st-team All-Ivy and second team All-America. (Photo Courtesy of Yale Sports Publicity)

By Bill Alden

For Chris Fake, a daily ritual this spring with the Yale University men’s lacrosse team helped mold him into one of the top defenders in the nation.

As the former Hun School standout looked to get up to speed in his freshman campaign for the Bulldogs, he drilled with with Yale senior attacker Ben Reeves everyday after practice. more

MAC ATTACK: Marqui McBride helps lead the offensive charge for the West all-star squad in the 22nd Annual Sunshine Football Classic last Friday at The College of New Jersey. Recently graduated Princeton High star lineman McBride enjoyed a big game as the West prevailed 28-20. (Photo by Frank Wojciechowski)

By Bill Alden

Marqui McBride wasn’t surprised when the West all-star squad started the 22nd Annual Sunshine Football Classic last Friday by grinding out a 14-play, 74-yard scoring march to jump ahead 7-0 over the East team.

“We established that lineman connection on the first day of practice,” said recently graduated Princeton High star offensive lineman McBride. “Everyone coming up with calls for ourselves and all that stuff.” more

June 27, 2018

A DREAM COME TRUE: Blake Dietrick heads to the basket in 2015 during her senior season for the Princeton University women’s basketball team. The star guard is currently in her second stint in the WNBA, playing for the Atlanta Dream. Dietrick has made eight appearances for the Dream, getting a season-high 18 minutes with three points in a 79-72 loss to the New York Liberty on June 19. (Photo by Frank Wojciechowski)

By Bill Alden

After a brilliant career for the Princeton University women’s basketball team and a stint in an Italian pro league, Blake Dietrick achieved her goal of playing in the Women’s National Basketball Association (WNBA) as she made the opening day roster for the Seattle Storm in 2016.

But Dietrick didn’t stick with the team, appearing in two games for the Storm and then playing in one game for the San Antonio Stars on a seven-day contract. more

OVER THE MOON: Yale University men’s lacrosse player Robert Mooney, right, battles for the ball against Duke in the NCAA championship game. Princeton resident and former Lawrenceville School standout Mooney helped the Bulldogs top the Blue Devils 13-11 in the title game to earn the program’s first-ever national crown. Mooney, a rising senior defender, earned second-team All-Ivy League honors this spring. (Photo Courtesy of Yale Sports Publicity)

By Bill Alden

In the early stages of his athletic career at the Lawrenceville School, Robert Mooney stamped himself as a college prospect in both soccer and lacrosse.

But after suffering a injury in the fall of 2013 during his junior season with the Big Red boys’ soccer team, Princeton native Mooney turned his attention to lacrosse.  more

June 20, 2018

HOMECOMING: Addie Micir, center, surveys the action during her role as an assistant coach for the Dartmouth College women’s basketball team. Micir, a 2011 Princeton University alum and former star for the Tigers women’s hoops program, is coming home to serve as an assistant coach for her alma mater. (Photo Courtesy of Princeton’s Office of Athletic Communications)

By Bill  Alden

When Addie Micir arrived at Princeton University in the fall of 2007 and joined the women’s basketball team, she developed an instant rapport with head coach Courtney Banghart.

“She has been a mentor of mine since day one when I stepped on campus and she was my coach,” said Micir. more

June 13, 2018

PRO PROSPECT: Ben Gross fires a pitch this spring in his senior season for the Princeton University baseball team. The former Princeton High standout enjoyed a superb final campaign, going 4-5 with 52 strikeouts in 52 1/3 innings and a 4.47 ERA as he earned second-team All-Ivy League honors. Last week, he was selected by the Houston Astros in the 34th round of the Major League Baseball Draft.(Photo Courtesy of Princeton’s Office of Athletic Communications)

By Bill Alden

Coming off a breakthrough junior season in 2017 which saw Ben Gross emerge as a star pitcher for the Princeton University baseball team after two years of struggling with injury, the senior righty got off to a rough start this spring. more

June 6, 2018

HOGAN’S HEROES: Danny Hogan, far right, helps the Princeton University men’s lightweight varsity eight take second at the Intercollegiate Rowing Association (IRA) national championship regatta last Sunday on Mercer Lake. The Tigers just missed the national title as they finished just behind victorious Columbia, clocking a time of 6:19.514 over the 2,000-meter course with the Lions coming at 6:18.782. (Photo by Frank Wojciechowski)

By Bill Alden

It was a daily reminder for Danny Hogan and Princeton University men’s lightweight varsity eight of the main obstacle that stood between them and a national title.

Having lost twice to Columbia for its only two defeats of the spring, the boat had its sights firmly set defeating Columbia when the two crews met at the Intercollegiate Rowing Association (IRA) national championship regatta. more