By Michael Otero
The dictionary definition of “undefeated” is ‘to overcome in a contest, election, battle, etc.; prevail over; vanquish. Three Pioneer fall sports teams share this quality, and to their credit own clean loss columns more than a month into the season.
The football team, led by Head Coach Bryan Collins is 5-0 on the season and is outscoring its opponents, 154-94. The Pioneers have an average winning margin of 12 points. The Pioneers’ run game has been the strength of its offense so far, totaling 812 yards as compared to only 571 yards given up by the defense. This rushing attack is led by senior quarterback Jeff Kidd with his 340 total yards; and the backfield tandem of David White and Malik Pierre have 334 and 241 yards, respectively.
The Pioneer defense has also been stout all year, getting seven interceptions compared to throwing just three. The Pioneers are averaging almost two sacks per game and have accumulated three game-changing safeties. Part of the recipe for winning is limiting the damage and the Pioneer defense has held the opponents under 21 points in four out of five games.
As well as the Pioneers have performed on the gridiron, as outstanding they have been on the soccer pitch. The men’s team is 9-0 and ranked No. 8 in the country for Division II. The sheer dominance of the Green Machine is seen in goals and shots attempts slash line. The Pioneers have amassed 28 goals on 178 shots as compared to just three goals allowed on 64 shots.
The defense has been incredible, allowing only three scores and all in three separate matches. After winning each of their first two games 2-1, the Pioneers have allowed one goal in seven meetings. That’s pretty good. The Pioneers also have six shutouts, which has made life very easy for senior keeper Jesper Malmstrom who owns an .875 save percentage in 637 minutes in goal.
As well as both the football and men’s soccer teams have played, even they have to marvel at the success of the field hockey team. The No. 1-ranked Pioneers are 8-0 and have victories over three top-10-ranked teams in the country.
The Pioneers own a nearly 4:1 goal ratio over their opponents and have used that to power their victories. The Pioneers’ offense has been strong, scoring almost three goals a game, but the defense has been a calling card. The opposition is averaging 0.75 goals a game. It’s pretty hard to win a game when you can’t score; the Pioneer opponents know this all too well.
While all teams have had success to open up the season, the fact that they are all doing it in similar ways with their defense is remarkable. When the offense is a little sluggish, the defense has been there to keep the game in hand for every team.
All three teams have championship aspirations and they are certainly off to a fantastic start; heck, you literally couldn’t ask for a better start.