There may have been only one Georgetown soccer team that reached the NCAA championship game in 2012, but there were two that achieved new levels of excellence.
The women’s team (16-4-3, 8-1-1 Big East) won the conference’s National Division title for the first time in its history, advanced to the Big East tournament finals and lost in heartbreaking fashion in the second round of the NCAA tournament. The Hoyas concluded the year ranked No. 17, the program’s highest-ever final ranking.
While the end result was not fully satisfactory given the team’s improvement, Head Coach Dave Nolan looked at the positives at the time of defeat.
“I felt we did everything we could this year. We grew as a team as the season went on, and we really did some great things,” Nolan said. “I’m really proud of this team, and I hope this inspires everyone to want to do this and go one better next year.”
Contrary to the previous year in which the team relied on its scoring to win games, the 2012 squad was both an offensive and defensive juggernaut. On the attack, the team set a school record with 50 goals scored and was ranked 23rd in the nation with 2.17 goals per game; on defense, the team set another school record with 13 shutouts.
One especially bright spot was the performance of sophomore midfielder Daphne Corboz. Expectations were high going into the year for the Greensbrook, N.J., native, coming off Big East all-rookie team and third team all-Big East honors her freshman year while playing out of position on the wing. But swapped back into the center of Nolan’s adjusted 4-3-3 formation, Corboz soared above her competition, registering 12 goals and 27 points in conference action to earn Big East offensive player of the year honors — the first Hoya to do so since Sara Jordan in 2009 — as well as being a unanimous all-Big East first team selection.
Corboz excelled in nonconference games as well, scoring 18 total goals, good for 10th in the country. Five of those came in an 8-0 win at Pittsburgh on Sept. 30, with her 11 points in the game marking a Big East record. On the national scale, Corboz was named the Eastern College Athletic Conference offensive player of the year, a first team All-American and one of 15 semifinalists for the Hermann Trophy, college soccer’s highest individual award. 2012 thus became the third straight year in which Georgetown had fielded an All-American, after forward Ingrid Wells was selected in both her junior and senior years.
More recently, Corboz was also named the only sophomore on Soccer America’s first team MVP squad and accepted her first invitation to a U.S. women’s U-23 national team training camp.
“This is a great honor for Daphne and indeed Georgetown,” Nolan said. “We are very excited for her, and she thoroughly deserves this chance for her efforts and dedication.”
Nolan was recognized for guiding his team to new heights. The Ireland native, in his ninth season with the school, was named Big East coach of the year and NSCAA northeast region coach of the year.
The women’s team this year graduates starting seniors Claire Magliola and Christina O’Tousa, who were staples at defensive midfield in 2012, as well as backup goalkeeper Hanna Monson. Taking their place, alongside rising underclassmen, will be a promising class of freshmen, including six recruits who have already signed national letters of intent.
Meanwhile, team leaders like Corboz, juniors Kaitlin Brenn, Alexa St. Martin, Colleen Dinn, MaryKroening and all-Big East first team defender Emily Menges will all return and attempt to bring theHoyas to even greater successes in 2013.