KSC Celebrates Homecoming on Saturday
Plymouth State University at 2 p.m. The day will be capped off with the induction of Head Soccer Coach Ron Butcher into the KSC Alumni Athletic Hall of Fame.
Both Owl cross country squads will be looking to regain their respective KSC Invitational titles after finishing behind Dartmouth's 'B' squad last year. Dartmouth broke Keene State's string of six straight men's championships. UMass-Lowell, Tufts, and Baldwin-Wallace College of Ohio are the other top teams in the field.
"It should be a good race," said KSC Coach Peter Thomas. "Dartmouth has one of the best Division I programs in New England."
Currently ranked 13th nationally and second regionally, the Owls should be well rested after taking last week off. KSC opened its season by finishing third at the Dartmouth Invitational, then capturing the UMass-Dartmouth championship.
One of three seniors in the Owls' lead pack, Ryan Gough has been KSC's front-runner this season. Gough won his first individual title at UMD. Seniors Joseph Hegarty, Pat Ard, and Matt Haley, and sophomore Kevin Kelleher comprise KSC's top pack.
"We're excited to run this meet and show people we have some talent," said Ard, a Kingston, N.H. native. "As seniors this is our last home meet, so we want to go out with a bang."
The Keene State women, ranked 11th in New England, are led by a group that includes Jennifer Adams, Tilton's Shannon O'Brien, Erin Landon, Stephanie Holly, and Stephanie Westcott of Bellows Falls, Vt.
"The women are still looking to gel," said Thomas. "We're not as good as we could be."
Springfield College's Meg Young returns to defend her women's championship.
Following his team's game against Plymouth State, Butcher will head over to the Lloyd P. Young Student Center for the Hall of Fame induction ceremony.
"Anytime you receive such a distinction and know that your ex-players are coming back from all over the country, it's a great honor," said Butcher, who recently earned his 500th career victory. "These kids have meant so much to me over 35 years. Anytime you know 60 to 70 of your former players are coming back, it's a great tribute and I feel gratified that they want to come back to see me."