YOUNG TALENT LEADS TEAM ON THE RISE

Freshmen Bouchard and Carpentier Have Immediate Impact

By Leslie Crofton, Sports Information Intern

 

Rarely does a freshman athlete have an immediate and significant impact on a varsity collegiate athletic program during his or her very first month as a member of a team. The Rhode Island College women’s soccer team, who are enjoying one of the most successful fall campaigns at RIC so far this season, has had not one, but two freshmen on this year’s squad do exactly that. Midfielder Alexis Bouchard (Warren, RI) and goalkeeper Melissa Carpentier (Woonsocket, RI) have been among those most responsible for the program’s success since the very beginning of the season and they just keep getting better and better with each game.

Bouchard is currently the second highest point scorer on the team, trailing only senior sensation Kerri Ferreira (Bristol, RI), with 18 points on the season. She and Ferreira are tied for most goals scored, posting eight goals each. Bouchard is leading the team in game-winning goals with three to her credit.

Carpentier is currently the number one goaltender in the Little East Conference, a position that head coach Nicole Barber says, “has never been held by any RIC women’s soccer player this late in the season in the history of the program.” Carpentier has led the Anchorwomen to five shutout victories in eleven games, making 98 saves while allowing only nine goals.

Both Bouchard and Carpentier have remarked on how smoothly their transition to college life, and more specifically to collegiate athletics, has gone thanks to the support of their teammates. “Everyone on the team is so good,” says Bouchard. “We all work so well together, it was easy to adjust to everyone’s play. I played with Allison [Vales] in high school and am only about a half hour away from home, so that made things easier too.”

Carpentier praised her teammates as well, saying, “I have been able to play as well as I have in goal because of my defense – I have so much confidence in them.  It’s a real team effort and I love it, it’s so much fun. It has been exciting to start off right away as a freshman.”

The freshmen duo’s teammates and coaches think just as highly of them in return.  Coach Barber has nothing but accolades for the two, saying “Alexis has impressed us with her ability to remain in the game for the entire 90 or 120 minutes and finish it strong. What’s great about Melissa is that she continues to get better during literally every practice and game. They’re both great.”

Bouchard and Carpentier are looking forward to what lies ahead for the team, with Bouchard naming their top goals as “going as far as we can in the tournament” and “being the number one Division III team in the state.”  The Anchorwomen are currently 7-2-2 overall and 3-0-1 in the Little East Conference.  The best record for any RIC women’s soccer squad in the program’s history is the 9-8-1 record posted in 1999, which the 2001 Anchorwomen should smash this year thanks to Bouchard, Carpentier, Ferreira and the rest of their teammates.

 

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