By ALEX SPONSELLER
The Toll Gate girls soccer team entered the 2022 fall season as perhaps the favorite to win the Division III title, as nearly the entire starting roster returned from last …
By ALEX SPONSELLER
The Toll Gate girls soccer team entered the 2022 fall season as perhaps the favorite to win the Division III title, as nearly the entire starting roster returned from last year’s playoff group.
However, the Titans were bit by the injury bug in the preseason and saw three of their starters get injured with potential long-term ailments, including last year’s leading scorer Olivia Dutra.
Now, Toll Gate will look for the remaining returners to step up and replace the production as well as some incoming freshmen to soften the blow.
“How do you make up for one of the state’s top scorers last year (in Dutra)? We have to figure out how to make up for that. Our midfield and defense are strong, we have some freshmen that are talented, we hope that we can pull this together. You have to play the games, we have a few (non-league) games this week to figure out how we’re going to make it work,” said Toll Gate coach Bob Enright.
Enright will be relying on a pair of seniors and a pair of underclassmen, especially.
“We have a great (sophomore) goalie in Alanna Pereira, we’re a very defensive-minded group and defensively we’re strong. Now, we are hoping that a couple players step up (to score goals). Kara Yelman is our other striker and she’ll have to step up. Morgan Caianiello, we’re hoping she steps up. We have another great freshman in Ava Ficher that can play any midfield position. We’re going to have our work cut out for us,” Enright said.
Although goals may be hard to come by in the early part of the season, Enright believes that the team’s strong defense will help keep it in games as it sorts things out.
“We have been defensive-minded the past couple of seasons, we know how to win close games,” Enright said. “If we can score one or two goals a game and protect that lead, that is going to be our strategy. We’re not going to be scoring six goals. We’re defensive-minded and we know how to play our scheme.”
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