Now that the school year is underway, the Pilot athletic programs have begun competing and working to improve their standings in the MCC. While some teams are trying to defend an MCC title or high conference standings, others are looking for a new year and a chance to improve from the year before. Although there are no MCC standings for women’s golf, the team appears to be quite talented as they have finished first in each of the three invitationals they have competed in which include the University of Saint Francis Invitational, the Youngstown State Invitational, and the Battle at Blackthorn. The ladies will test their perfect streak as they head to Kentucky to compete in the Don Bishop Invitational. The Men’s golf team has competed in a number of invitationals as well. After struggling in their season debut at the University of Saint Francis Invitational, they have managed to bounce back and shoot some exceptional scores. They won a dual match against Goshen, finished third out of eight teams at the Robert Morris Invitational, and finished seventh of 14 teams at the Battle at Blackthorn. The team hopes to keep improving and compete in the NCCAA National Tournament which is hosted in Panama City, Florida. Although the Men’s soccer team has lost quite a few solid players from last year and has one of the toughest schedules of play, the Pilots have shown that they have a lot of heart and look to defend their MCC Title. Conference play has not quite started for the soccer team; however, they are the only school receiving votes for the NAIA top 25 pole and are definitely the school with the target on their backs. The women’s soccer team has had a tough start to the season. They have lost some nail biters and have played two top 25 schools very tough. Although they are currently 1-6, there is no doubt that this team can do a lot of damage in the conference and scare some good teams. Conference play starts for the lady Pilots on September 28, as they take on the Taylor Trojans at home. Both of the cross country teams have recently been in action. The men’s team competed in the Midwest Classic in Bourbonnais, Illinois, where they placed ninth of 14 teams. They also ran in the Knight Invitational held at Grand Rapids, Michigan and placed 13 of 15 teams. The women’s team finished eighth out of 12 teams at the Midwest Classic and 13th of 14 teams at the Knight Invitational. Both the men and the women will return to action October 1, at the Notre Dame Invitational. The men’s tennis team has already played seven matches this fall. Currently, the team holds a 2-5 overall record and a 1-4 conference record. Although they find themselves tied in seventh place in the MCC standings the Pilots are looking to capitalize and improve their conference record. The team will have an opportunity to do that as they have Goshen, Indiana Wesleyan and Spring Arbor to play in the next two weeks. The women’s tennis team has once again found themselves in a position to contend for an MCC title. The Pilots are currently 3-2 in the conference which puts them in fourth place. Throughout the season they have shown that they can play with the teams at the top of the conference and will be a threat in the MCC tournament held in October. The women will definitely be tested next week as they take on Indiana Wesleyan who is currently undefeated overall.