By ALEX SPONSELLER
The Pilgrim girls soccer team is set for another fall season in the always-tough Division I group and is looking to keep the ball rolling as it has made the postseason in …
By ALEX SPONSELLER
The Pilgrim girls soccer team is set for another fall season in the always-tough Division I group and is looking to keep the ball rolling as it has made the postseason in back-to-back years since returning from DII.
The Pats lost five seniors from last season, including Gatorade Player of the Year Sarah Lynch as well as offensive weapon Alanna Coffie. The team also graduated Janelle Mixner, who started in net for the Pats for all four years of high school.
Although Pilgrim will need to replace 55 goals and the state’s best keeper, coach Tom Flanders in confident in the five new seniors stepping up as well as the other returning players. Pilgrim is set to return Keira Ramsden, Gillian Brown, Faith Meade, Katie Shaheen and Dasani Stewart.
“There are no easy days in Division I, everyone is tough. Our five seniors all have varsity experience and either played as freshmen or were swing players. Even if you are not a starter, you can learn a lot if you pay attention. They are all students of the game and they know our system, they know our style of play and it’s going to be about them just carrying it on,” said Flanders.
Taking up the keeper position will be junior Jenna Madden, who has served as the team’s backup the past two seasons. Flanders is confident in Madden and believes that she is more than ready to play the role.
“She plays Premier soccer at a very high-level, she’s a very capable keeper. She’s great with her feet, she’s really the start of our offense. She has a great personality, if she makes a mistake or someone on the field makes a mistake she doesn’t get flustered. She has a great mindset for a goalkeeper,” said Flanders.
The team is set to open its league schedule on Thursday when it travels to La Salle for a big Division I showdown. Flanders believes the key to success this fall will be sticking to their game plan and strengths.
“We just need to play our style and play our game. We don’t really know what these teams are about at this point so we have to worry about the things that we can control. We’ll see how it goes, make adjustments at halftime if we need to, do those things. But we really want to make teams adjust to us,” Flanders said,