After making the Final Four in 2014 and the Elite Eight in 2016, Providence College cemented itself as a top program nationally. So when last year’s “disappointment” of going 5-8-5 transpired – as head coach Craig Stewart called it – frustrations settled in.
Important pieces such as striker Mac Steeves (Needham, Mass.), attacking midfielder Dominik Machado (Attleboro, Mass.) and midfielder Tiago Mendonca were snakebitten by injuries. The schedule, with non-conference games against national powers like UNC, Wake Forest, UConn and Boston College, was grueling. And there was hope in the form of late-season, 3-0-4 push.
“With the group we had, we thought we could still make a push,” Stewart said.