The South Tama/East Marshall girls' soccer team hosted Aplington-Parkersburg on April 4 to start the 2013 soccer season for the Lady Trojans. ST/EM started the game with Sam Earley in goal; Sadie Kavalier, Hailee Weiss, Grace Kavalier and Cynthia Lares in defense; Araceli Angel, Kristi Lasley, Carmen Angel and Danni Stubbs in the mid-field; with Guadalupe (Mona) Nunez and Ericka Dunning up front.
This is a young team, with 25 on the roster, but just five players returning with experience from last year's squad, led by seniors Grace Kavalier and Megan Wanatee (not available for this game) and juniors Sam Earley, Araceli Angel and Hailee Weiss. There are a couple of sophomores that played a lot last year and will be starting this year. They are Sadie Kavalier and Ericka Dunning. The rest are untested players starting for the this year and they are freshmen Cynthia Lares and Danni Stubbs, sophomores Mona Nunez and Kristi Lasley and senior Carmen Angel.
Depth will be an issue for the first few games as the rest of the squad is made up of girls playing soccer for the first time, so lots of room for gaining experience. The rest of the players are freshmen Kloey Fairall, Maria Fonseca, Celenia Garcia Kylee Hoskins, Hannah Keckler, Socorro Mendoza, Kelsey DeSchamp,and Alyssa Patro; sophomores Skyler Evans, Paige Kadner and Lexie Shadden; and juniors Anna Jensen and Laura Vinke.
The game started under sunny skies with temps in the mid 50s, with a breeze out of the WNW 15 MPH. A-P took the kickoff and the 2013 season was underway. For the first five minutes both teams were getting use to game situations with both teams going deep into the other teams defense, but being turned away. A-P found the right combination in the seventh minute for a 1-0 lead. It came on a nice attack and a good shot that the ST/EM goalie could not get a hand on.
ST/EM had a good answer but it turned out to be better for A-P. On the counter attack, the ST/EM defense got caught flat footed and it was a breakaway for the visitors. Earley, the ST/EM goalie, made a very good save but the rebound was put back in for a 2-0 lead at the nine-minute mark for A-P. This was a common theme for the rest of the half.
The Lady Trojans would mount a good attack, but kept getting caught playing too flat of a defense line and A-P kept utilizing a drop ball right over the head of the defense. A-P also utilized its speed to force ST\EM defense to chase the forwards and Earley made some very good one-versus-one plays. Earley was forced to come out more than once to make saves. At the 31-minute mark, A-P finally got a goal from this form of attack and again at the 33-minute mark for a 4-0 lead. And this is the way the half ended.
In the second half it was more of the same with A-P continuing to utilize its speed and at the 43-minute mark, it scored for a 5-0 lead. A-P scored again at the 47-minutes mark on a nice shot from 30 yards out from a weak side player that was left wide open. At the 58-minute mark A-P finished the scoring for the night on a corner that the defense could not clear and A-P took advantage for a 7-0 lead. And this is the way the game ended.
ST/EM did adjust and shutdown the fast break that A-P utilized so well. It showed the inexperience of the players, but at the same time, the team never quit.
The ST/EM team did show some things that will be built on. In the second half, the team was more aggressive. We need to continue to work on passing and the control of passed balls. Again for the first game of the season, there are positives. We showed that at times we can move the ball. We had some good looks but need to learn to take shots quicker.
Players need to realize that the game pace is a lot quicker than in practices and need to make adjustment during the game. Conditioning also needs to be improved as the preseason has not allowed for the best of this.
Overall the team worked hard, and did not give up anytime during the game. Also some younger players got to see playing time as subs. Fairall, Hoskins, Keckler and Evans all got to see playing time and contributed to the effort put forth.
The Lady Trojans next game was Tuesday when they travel to Reinbeck to take on Gladbrook-Reinbeck in a 5:30 p.m. start for the varsity, followed by the JV game.