Mariner girls look to rebuild offense Scott's Sports Spot

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Orly Vaughn breaks up the drive. Photo by Jack Scott

The girls soccer team is once again looking to start off in rebuilding mode. We do have a good core of players who played last year, but the challenge will be to put together an offense that can move the ball into the opponent’s goal.

Coach Elissa Haskell will need to get the newer girls that are freshmen or just starting with soccer up to the speed of varsity play. The seniors we lost last year scored most of the goals we did get, though Junior Ava Lowrey and sophomore Lily Gray did score last year. We will need to develop an offensive mindset and work on spacing and passing to get the ball down to the goal.

The defense is where the most experience is from last year. Jesslyn Gove got some experience in goal and has looked solid so far. Until we get our offense in gear, the defense will be under fire against the stronger teams we play. This was certainly the case against Schenck in our home opener.

The girls lost their first game against Schenck 3-0. Schenck was able to control the play mostly down our end and we held it to a 1-0 game until the last 9 minutes of the second half. Gove made many saves to preserve the sore, but Schenck booted in a couple hard shots in the last 10 minutes. I think the defense was just out of gas by then.

One part of our game we will need to work on is being more aggressive and not waiting for the other team to get the ball first. This was very apparent against Schenck. Also passing to each other to move the ball ahead. This is all part of the learning experience that this team will have to go through.

The key will be the big sophomore class being able to step up and take a bigger role in leadership this year. As freshmen last year, they learned by being on the field a lot. Getting an offensive mindset will be critical for our success. It’s a tall order, but if we improve like we did last year, we can do it.

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