Field hockey

Coach: Cynthia Pratt (11th season)

Last season: 8-7 (6-3 NAC)

Returners: Mara Balboni (Jr.), Andrea Beaulieu (Jr.), Meghan Hughes (Sr.), Delainey Kein (Jr.), Emily Lewia (So0.), Chelsea Morley (Sr.), Susan Newkirk (Jr.), Meghan Plant (Sr.), Lindsey Whitney (Jr.), Rebecca Young (Jr.)

Newcomers: Alyssa Arsenault, Sarita Crandall, LeeAnne Greenleaf, Bridgette Hills, Carly Raymond, Patricia Smith, Emmah Spahr, Jenessa Talarico

Outlook: After reaching the NAC quarterfinals in 2013, the Beavers are hoping an influx of youth can help them go deeper in the playoffs. Four-year starter Morley led the team in assists last year with eight. This year, she will have Balboni, Beaulieu and Young to look for scoring opportunities. Plant, Kein and Hughes are also returning starters anchoring the defense. Pratt is expecting the newcomers to contribute right away and make the Beavers stronger as the season unfolds.

Coach’s comment: “It may take time for us to gel as a team, and we hope to be playing our best field hockey when the NAC playoffs begin.”

Women’s soccer

Coach: Molly Wilkie (7th season)

Last season: 9-7-3 (7-1-1 NAC)

Returners: Jenna Silliboy (Sr., D), Keli McLellan (Sr., M), Avalon Amador (Sr., F), Sara Quimby (Sr., D), Katie Emmons (Sr., D), Jenny Hayward (Sr., D), Alexandra Crocker (Sr., M), Sarah Pokorny (Sr., F), Samantha Hatch (Jr., G), Jennifer Denault (Jr., F), Dayle Jordan (Jr., D), Angelica Horne (Jr., D), Brittney Sieg (So., D), Katie Clark (So., M), Heather King (So., G), Baylee Doughty (So., M), Bridget Humphrey (So., F)

Newcomers: Haley Murano (Fr., G), Kaiti Kinney (Fr., D/M), Thia Bridges (Fr., G)

Outlook: The Beavers came within one win of the NAC championship game last year and graduated just two seniors who scored. One of those was NAC Player of the Year Kayla Tuttle, so there are vacancies that need to be filled. Amador, the former Mt. Blue star, is the leading returning scorer, while Crocker and Humphrey ranked in the top five on the team. Quimby, Silliboy, Sieg and Emmons lead a very experienced defense in front of a trio of much less experienced goalkeepers vying to take over for the graduated Beth Lebel, who is now part of Wilkie’s staff.

Coach’s comment: “What has been really cool to see in preseason is everyone has stepped their level up. I’ve seen people who maybe didn’t play such a big role last year ready to accept a bigger role.”

Men’s soccer

Coach: Tommy DiNuzzo (2nd season)

Last season: 4-13-1 (2-6-1 NAC)

Returners: Ryan Fairbanks (Jr., F), Austin Dooley (Jr., M/F), Jordan Luks (Sr., M), Uriah Forest-Bulley (Jr., D), Noodles Hussein (Jr., M), Henry Ametti (So., D), Chris Roberts (Jr., G), Ronie Morales (So., G), Tyler Adams (So., M)

Newcomers: Darine Gnidehoue (Jr., D/M), Ean Rouillard (So., M/F), Zach Sathasivam (Jr., D), Matt Wilson (Fr., G), Dan Abbatello (Fr., D/M), Robbie Paddack (So., D/M), Dan Bernier (Fr., D), Yusuf Yama (Fr., M/F)

Outlook: After taking some lumps last year with one of the youngest teams in the NAC, the Beavers look to improve with some key returners and exciting newcomers. Fairbanks will play up top. Yama is already showing promise as a playmaker on the attack, and DiNuzzo hopes he Dooley, Luks, Adams, and Hussein can carry some of the scoring load. Forest-Bulley and Arnetti anchor the back line, with Roberts, Morales and Wilson locked in a three-way battle for the starting goalkeeper spot. With another young team and five straight road games to start the season, the Beavers will be tested early. But there is reason to believe they could be a tough out come tournament time.

Coach’s comment: “We’re excited for the season and think that we have the right mix of players to make a run in the NAC.”

Men’s cross country

Coach: Joe Staples (2nd season)

Last season: 5th at NAC championship

Runners: Sam Leal (Sr.), Andrew Carlson (Sr.), Nick Bourget (Jr.), Josh Wynne (Jr.), Josh Richards (So.), Andrew Davis (So.), Austin Gatcomb (So.)

Outlook: UMF lost two senior runners, including two-time All-NAC selection Jackson Fortin. Gatcomb, another all-conference selection, finished 10th at the NAC championship. Conference coaches picked the Beavers to finish sixth in a NAC preseason poll.

Women’s cross country

Coach: Joe Staples (2nd season)

Last season: 5th at NAC championship

Runners: Cadyn Wilson (Sr.), Amelia Tacheny (So.), Katherine Schrader (So.), Brennan Radulski (So.), Emma Pidden (So.), Emily Franklin (So.), Kaitlin Flanders (So.), Aliza Dube (So.)

Outlook: The Beavers performed well with one of the youngest teams in the NAC last season. Flanders and Pidden earned All-NAC honors as freshmen after finishing sixth and 13th overall at the conference championship. NAC coaches picked the Beavers to finish fifth in a preseason poll.