Photo by Valerie Wutti
The Ravens women’s soccer team returns to the pitch on Friday, September 24, 2021, when they host the Queen’s Gaels at the Ravens’ Perch to kick off the 2021 season.
After a long hiatus from inter-university competition, GoRavens.ca looks back at the 2019 women’s soccer season and to preview the upcoming campaign.
2019 regular season record: 2-8-42019 regular season standings: 8th in OUA East2019 playoff record: Did not qualifyHome Field: Ravens’ PerchSEASON SCHEDULE
The Ravens finished the 2019 season with a 2-8-4 record, which saw them finish 8th in the 10-team OUA East division. Carleton won five fewer games than the previous season and the team had 17 fewer points in the standings compared to 2018.
Injuries played a big factor in the team’s decline in 2019, but it did open the door for many rookies to gain experience during a season that saw several veterans miss significant game time.
The Ravens’ defence allowed the fourth fewest goals in the division (15), however, a lack of firepower – just nine goals in 14 games – and limited scoring opportunities up front prevented the team from capitalizing on its strong defensive record.
With the OUA re-configuring its divisions to make a more COVID-friendly, regionalized schedule, the Ravens will compete in an OUA East division featuring Ontario Tech, uOttawa, Queen’s, RMC, Trent and lastly, York, the new team on the block.
Carleton will have its work cut out going up against some of the most talented teams in the conference this season. Over the past five years, the Gee-Gees, Gaels, Ridgebacks and Lions have all qualified for at least one U SPORTS national championship tournament.
This year will see eight teams qualify for the OUA playoffs. The Ravens will aim to be one of the top-two finishers in the division to receive automatic qualification to the postseason or, alternatively, be one of the top two third-place teams that will make the playoffs.
With a young group at its core in 2019, a more experienced collection of players will take to the field for Carleton this season.
Leading the way up front is forward Chloe Dougherty (Ottawa, Ont.), whose four-goal haul placed her at the top of the team’s scoring charts in 2019. Doughtery, who formerly competed for the Jacksonville St. Gamecocks of the NCAA, was named the Ravens’ 2019 MVP and her return will bolster the attack. Along with Dougherty, keep an eye on speedy first-year winger Mikayla Moser (Ajax, Ont.), who spurned several NCAA and U SPORTS offers to join up with the Ravens.
In the midfield, returning veterans Jenna Gurniak (Vancouver, B.C.), Ghalia Hammada (Kanata, Ont.) and Sabrina Hammada (Kanata, Ont.) will take on key leadership roles, while sophomore Selena Moussa (Ottawa, Ont.) will look to build on an impressive rookie campaign that saw her start 10 games and consistently create scoring chances.
Third-year defender Elodie Sylvain (Ottawa, Ont.) will be a key contributor in the Ravens’ backline, as will second-year player Youma Konate (Ottawa, Ont.). Both Sylvain and Konate were rocks in defence in 2019, starting all 14 games and providing great coverage in front of goal. Returning in net will be third-year keeper Sophie Ehlebracht (Ottawa, Ont.), who will look to claim the starting role this season. Ehlebracht started five games in 2019, allowing just six goals while making 28 saves.
Head coach Dom Oliveri enters his fourth year with the Ravens women’s soccer program after a successful five-year spell at Algonquin College. Oliveri, who was named the CCAA National Coach of the Year, will look to guide his team back into the postseason in 2021. In his first season in charge at Carleton in 2018, Oliveri guided the Ravens to the playoffs with an impressive 7-3-6 regular season record, which was good for third place in the OUA East division.
“The coaching staff and I are excited to return to the field for the 2021 season. Although the 2020 season was cancelled due to COVID-19, the players have worked extremely hard, overcoming a number of obstacles over the past 18 months to prepare for the upcoming season.”
“Once again, we have been able to attract top-level talent to our program in both our 2020 and 2021 recruiting classes. We are also happy to have several veteran players returning to lead the team.”
“We hope that you will join us in cheering on the Ravens Women’s Soccer program this season by filling the stands and passionately supporting the team!”