A team-by-team look at the area’s girls high school soccer teams:
Coach: Brian Deem
2011 record: 17-3-3 (lost in state quarterfinals)
Top returnees: Kate Carman, Sr., F; Chelsea Gill, Sr., F; Hannah Harris, Sr., F; Logan Arnold, Sr., Def.
Coach’s comment: “I think a lot of people think when you lose eight starters, it’s going to hurt you. And it’s going to set you back, but I do think we have a very good incoming freshman class that has talent. Our sophomore and junior classes, I think we definitely have kids that can step up. Will we be at the talent level we were?¿There’s no way, and we’re not going to have the same amount of depth as last year, but to think we’re all of a sudden going to become a bottom feeder is ridiculous.”
Outlook:¿Boyle lost a ton of experience, eight starters and the top reserve off the bench, off last year’s Elite Eight squad. But expectations are always high with the Rebels, and should be again this season. Carman has proven to be a solid scorer, Gill and Harris can also put the ball in the net, and Arnold has been a defensive starter since she was a freshman.
The key is going to be how fast newcomers can step in and fill their roles. Deem expects junior Laken Wren and sophomores Alexis Kerbaugh and Caitlin Baker to step in. He also thinks freshmen Meghan Paynter, Ellery Denny, Haley Bates and Madison LaFavre can also contribute.
And, the region got tougher with state semifinalist West Jessamine, as well as East Jessamine, coming in for the new 12th Region.
13 — vs. Henry Clay at Fayette County i-High Soccer Frenzy at Lafayette, 8 pm.; 15 — vs. South Laurel, at Fayette County i-High Soccer Frenzy at Lafayette, 6:15 p.m.; 18 — vs. Dunbar at Fayette County i-High Soccer Frenzy at Lafayette, 10 a.m.; 21 — at North Laurel, 7:30 p.m.; 23 — MERCER¿COUNTY, 7:30 p.m.; 27 — at Anderson County, 7:30 p.m.; 29 — at Woodford County, 7:30 p.m.
1 — at Danville, 8 p.m.; 4 — MARION¿COUNTY, 7:30 p.m.; 11 — LITTLE¿CAESAR”S¿CLASSIC vs. FRANKLIN¿COUNTY, 6 p.m.; 13 — LITTLE¿CAESAR’S¿CLASSIC, Team TB; 15 — LITTLE¿CAESAR’S¿CLASSIC, Team TBA; 18 — at Garrard County, 6 p.m.; 20 — LINCOLN¿COUNTY, 7:30 p.m.; 24 — at Lexington Catholic, 7:30 p.m.; 27 — at East Jessamine, 7:30 p.m.
2 — SOUTHWESTERN, 7:30 p.m.; 4 — at Bardstown, 7 p.m.
2011 record: 7-11-3 (lost in 29th District semifinals)
Top retunees: Samantha Sandidge Sr., F; Hannah Frankel, Sr., Def.; Kelsie Madden, Sr., F; Fariha Siddiqui, Sr. ,Def.; Karina Angel, Sr., MF; Alexa Burks, Sr., Def.
Coach’s Comment: “I’m expecting a lot of leadership from our upperclassmen. The key is finding consistency on the defensive end. We spent a lot of time in camp and so far during practice trying to focus on defensive consistency. We have four senior defenders this year, so improvement should come with their experience. Some games could have gone either way last year, and defensively, is where we could definitely turn it around.”
Outlook: Last season Danville had three ties, lost twice by one goal and once by two. A more experienced squad, the Admirals could turn those numbers around for a better 2012.
The six seniors — Sandidge, Frankel, Madden, Siddiqui, Angels and Burks — provide a lot of experience and should be improved after another year of seasoning. Sophomore Katie Nelson has moved into goal and Smith said she had a good week at the Centre College camp and has worked hard to get ready for the position switch.
A big key for the Admirals is how quick Sandidge, who had 26 goals last year, can come back from an offseason ankle injury. If she can come back and other players can also score, it should be a turnaround for the Admirals.
13 — at East Jessamine, 7:30 p.m.; 18 — at Paris, 1 p.m.; 20 — at Bethlehem, 7 p.m.; 23 — at South Laurel, 6 p.m.; 25 —¿at Pikeville, 5 p.m.; 27 — TAYLOR¿COUNTY, 6 p.m.; 28 — SOUTHWESTERN, 530 p.m.
1 — BOYLE¿COUNTY, 8 p.m.; 5 — at Western Hills, 7:30 p.m.; 6 — LINCOLN¿COUNTY, 5:30 p.m.; 8 — at Corbin, 1 p.m.; 10 — at Somerset, 6 p.m.; 14 — at Garrard County, 6 p.m.; 19 — at Marion County, 5:30 p.m.; 24 — at Lafayette, 8 p.m.; 27 — MODEL, 6 p.m.; 29 — MADISON¿SOUTHERN, 2 p.m.
2 — at Anderson County, 5:30 p.m.; 4 — NORTH¿LAUREL, 5:30 p.m.
2011 record: 7-12-2 (Lost in first round of 29th District Tournament)
Top returnees: Mary Ezaizat, Sr; Samantha Floyd, Sr; Kendra Rich, Sr.; Danielle Smith, Sr; Rachel Truitt, Sr.; Megan Hale, Sr.
Coach’s Comment: Coach did not respond for comment.
Outlook: Garrard had a five-win improvement last year, and the most wins since 2002. And with the bulk of its team back, the Golden Lions could an even better 2012. Garrard has six seniors and eight juniors, which will give the Lions something they have not had much of, veteran experience.
14 — TAYLOR¿COUNTY, 7:30 p.m.; 20 — BEREA, 6:30 p.m.; 21 — at Pulaski County, 7 p.m.; 25 — BELL¿COUNTY, 1 p.m.; 27 — at Berea, 6 p.m.
4 — MADISON¿SOUTHERN, 7:30 p.m.; 6 — at Sayre, 6 p.m.; 8 — at Whitley County, 1 p.m.; 11 — at Lincoln County, 5:30 p.m.; 13 —¿ESTILL¿COUNTY, 6 p.m.; 14 — DANVILLE, 6 p.m.; 15 — MIDDLESBORO, 2 p.m.; 18 — BOYLE¿COUNTY, 6 p.m.; 19 — MODEL, 6:30 p.m.; 22 — at Middlesboro, 2 p.m.; 25 — CORBIN, 6 p.m.; 27 — WAYNE¿COUNTY, 6:30 p.m.
2 — at Bryan Station, 8 p.m.; 4 — at Bourbon County, 7:30 p.m.
2011 record: 13-5-1 (Lost in first round of the 30th District Tournament)
Top returnees: Taylor Faulkner, Sr., MF; Morgan Dennis, Jr., NF; Maddie Adams, Jr., Def.; Jerrica Kidd, Jr. GK; Alyssa Meece, Jr., Def.; Taelor Owens, Jr., Def.; Rachel Spangler, Jr., F; Sissy Slone, Jr. ,MF.; Michaela Sebastian, Jr., MF.
Coach’s Comment: “We have a special group of young ladies who show good teamwork, sportsmanship, and character both on and off the field. We have two seniors (Faulkner and Megan Yocum) who are both fantastic role models for our team. Our junior class has come into this season highly motivated and ready to work. They have found their place as the leaders of this team. Most of them have played in the offseason and their maturity as players is evident in their skill. They are a game-changing group.”
Outlook:¿The Patriots have Spangler and her 34 goals, and a good supporting cast back from a 13-win team. Faulkner, Kidd, Meese, Owens, Slone, Dennis, Adams and Sebastian also provide veteran leadership and experience for a squad which lost five seniors.
Lincoln got moved into the new 45th District, so getting to the regional will be tough. And even if the record may not show it, the Patriots should be even better this season.
14 — at Wayne County, 6 p.m.; 16 — MODEL, 6 p.m.; 20 — at Marion County, 6 p.m.; 21 — at Madison¿Southern, 6 p.m.; 23 — at East Jessamine, 7:30 p.m.; 27 — CORBIN, 6 p.m.; 28 — at Clinton County, 5 p.m.; 30 — OWEN¿COUNTY, 6:30 p.m.
4 — at North Laurel, 6 p.m.; 6 — at Danville, 5:30 p.m.; 10 — at Southwestern, 6 p.m.; 11 — GARRARD¿COUNTY, 5:30 p.m.; 13 — PULASKI¿COUNTY, 5:30 p.m.; 17 — at Madison¿Central, 6 p.m.; 20 — at Boyle County, 7:30 p.m.; 24 — MERCER¿COUNTY, 5:30 p.m.; 25 — at Somerset, 5:30 p.m.
4 — at McCreary Central, 6 p.m.
Coach: Tony Brown
2011 record: 17-4-1 (lost in 15th Region Final)
Top returners:¿Shannon Murray, Sr., F; Erika Kehrt, Sr., Def.; Carli Souder, Sr., Def.; Amanda, Howard, Jr., GK; Reagan Freeman, Jr., Def.; Michelle Roby, Jr.; Alaina Bechtoldt, Jr, MF/F; Gentry Brown, Jr., MF/F; Samantha Travillian, So., MF/F.
Coach’s Comment: “Our expectations are high, and I expect the team to do well. We adjusted the schedule and are playing some different teams. It’s a lot different that what we’re used to in the past. We have an excellent group of girls, they play well together and have been playing together a long time. If they can live up to those expectations, they’ll have a great season.”
Outlook:¿The Titans are coming off their best season ever and most of the main pieces back, losing just three players for Brown, who has been a Mercer assists for four seasons. Murray was second in the state with 53 goals, and Howard has emerged as a stopper in goal. Couple with returners on offense and defense, and the Titans should be even better this season. Kehrt and Souder are solid on the back line, and the defense has good depth. Roby and Travillian could help ease the scoring burden on Murray in Mercer’s new offense, making the Titans even tougher to stop. The key may be to handle living up to such high expectations.
Of course, the district and region gets tougher with East Jessamine and West Jessamine coming in, so getting back to the regional final will be more difficult this year. But with the talent and experience the Titans have, this could be the year they do.
21 — at West Jessamine, 7:30 p.m.; 23 — at Boyle County, 7:30 p.m.; 25 — at John Hardin, 8 a.m.; 30 — EAST¿JESSAMINE, 7 p.m.
4 —¿at East Jessamine, 7 p.m.; 6 — BARDSTOWN, 7:30 p.m.; 11 —¿NELSON¿COUNTY, 6 p.m; 20 — ANDERSON¿COUNTY, 7 p.m.; 22 — WEST¿JESSAMINE, 7 p.m.; 24 — at Lincoln County, 5:30 p.m.; 29 — MONTGOMERY¿COUNTY, 10:30 a.m.
1 — SOUTH¿LAUREL, 6:30 p.m.