Tradition, pride, and a nationally known program – these traits are all hallmarks of the RCSJ Gloucester women's soccer program that will likely continue right into the 2019 fall season as the Runners begin action this week under veteran coach Megan Ruttler.
Following a solid showing in 2018 in the Region XIX championship tournament, the Roadrunners (12-6 overall) not only return a veteran roster, but one loaded with new talent.
Ruttler, who will be assisted by coaches Julie Chini and Maria Grady, will welcome back Region XIX standout veterans such as Dehlia Fynes, Kayke Davila, and Angelina Mowad in hopes of winning a Garden State Athletic Conference crown.
Meanwhile, a solid group of freshmen recruits, including talented goalkeeper Allison Gebhart, a former Delsea Regional standout, are expected to contribute and help the team make a run at a fourth Region XIX crown in five years.
The Runners open the 2019 season with a tough opponent in Mercer County Community College at home Thursday, August 29, before hitting the road for six straight away games against top regional opponents. They include Camden County College on Sept. 10 followed by the Dragon Invitational and games against host No. 9 ranked Howard CC (MD) and Anne Arundel CC on Sept. 14. The Runners will also face nationally ranked Brookdale CC and Union County in key conference and region battles as part of their September schedule.
Coach: Megan Ruttler, 10th season; 113 career wins at RCSJ Gloucester in 9 seasons.
Assistant Coaches: Julie Chini (10th season) and Maria Grady (1st season).
Last Season: 12-6 overall; Region XIX Final Four.
Season Opener: August 29, 4 pm, vs. Mercer County Community College at RCSJ Gloucester, Deptford, NJ.
Key Returnees: Kayla Davila (Buena), So., midfield; Dehlia Fynes (Washington Twp.), So., back/midfield; Morgan Merwuth (Gateway), So., midfield/back; Angelina Mowad (Washington Twp.), So., midfield; Crisandra Civatte (Williamstown), midfield/back; Dawn Foglein (Clayton), So., back/midfield.
Promising Newcomers: Allison Gebhart (Delsea), Fr., goalie; Ave Buonpastore (Highland Regional), Fr., midfield; Alex Olson (Williamstown), Fr., back/midfield; Alyssa Meglino (Williamstown), Fr., back/midfield; Siera Rivera (Vineland), Fr., back/midfield.
Additional Contributors: Caitlin Schlosser (Clayton); Carly Malia (Gloucester County Christian); Paige Maher (Central); Megan Mann (Paul VI); Katie Cave (Williamstown); Leigh Swietanski (West Deptford); Leidy Bonilla (Lindenwold); Kaitlynn Johnson (GCIT).
Outlook for 2019: The Roadrunners will be strong contenders for the GSAC and Region XIX championships. Top opponents include Rowan Burlington; Mercer County CC; Howard CC (MD), Anne Arundel CC (MD); Brookdale CC; Union County; and Montgomery Rockville among others. Coach Ruttler will feature a nice mix of scoring power from her veteran players and possibly one of the region's top goalies in Allison Gebhart.
Coach Megan Ruttler on 2019 season: "We have a nice mix of veteran players and talented freshmen," said Ruttler. "Everyone has been working hard and learning our system. We are strong defensively and with our goalkeeping. We'll continue to improve offensively with each game and battle for the conference and region championships."