HARVARD — If three of the key adjectives to describe a team are deep, talented and exxperienced, life is probably good. That applies to the Bromfield girls soccer team and the Lady Trojans enter the 2010 with high expectations.
The Lady Trojans advanced to the Central Mass. Division 3 semi-finals last season when its season ended with a loss to Sutton. Only two players graduated from that team and the Lady Trojans look to have a potent mixture of veterans, up-and-comers and promising newcomers.
“The depth we have has created a lot of competition and some tough decisions,” said B.J. Pessia, co-coach of the Lady Trojans along with Gary Wenger. “We have put together a tough schedule to help us get ready for the playoffs. The seniors on this team understand what is in place and the key to the season will be the upperclassmen supporting the underclassmen and molding a cohesive team.”
Bromfield will be very strong at the defensive end with senior captain Aly Marteney in goal, and senior captain Sydney Durand, senior Julia Alexander, junior Molly Papazian, and sophomore Moriah Arnold starting at fullbacks.
“Aly is aggressive, fundamentally sound and provides a lot of leadership,” said Pessia. “She gives us experience at a crucial position and she has a great attitude, including wanting to win badly. Sydney loves to play the game and never gives up. She came off the bench last season but will start this year. She has good speed and a lot of stamina. Julia is a smart player who anticipates plays and breaks them up. She is quiet, but is deceptive and marks very well. Molly is very strong and plays through every ball. She is a tenacious player who stepped up last season. Moriah is athletic, fast and aggressive. She is an offensive threat and is important in our transition game.”
Midfield will also be a strong suit as the starters will be senior captain Emma Rothkopf, senior Margaret Kibbler, senior Erica Marksteiner, and sophomore Susannah Wright.
“Emma sees the field well and distributes the ball where it needs to go,” said Pessia. “She is very experienced and is a leader who understands both the game and her teammates well. Margaret has a very hard shot and she is playing with more confidence this season. She is far more comfortable on the field. Erika was injured much of last season and it is nice to have her back. She is fast and tenacious and never quits on a play. Susannah is an athletic player with good footwork and a strong foot. She has the ability to change gears with a burst of speed.”
Senior captain Grace Bilodeau leads the forward contingent while junior Katja Lierhaus, and sophomores Casey Magrath and Kaya Phillips round out a potent quartet up front.
“Grace is a game changer with the ability to finish,” said Pessia. “She is experienced, athletic, aggressive and has a strong shot. Katja has good size, a hard shot and she distributes the ball well. She is a much more mature player this season. Casey is an athletic player whose energy provides a spark. She is bigger and stronger this season and finishes well. Kaya is strong, physical and aggressive and is willing to challenge 50-50 balls.”
But what is especially exciting about this team is the depth on hand. Providing that depth are Kylie Nygren, Bernadette Stadler, Rylee Osgood, Brittany Lee, Lizzy Rooney, Clara Wang, Allysa Johnson, and Sara Duckett.
“Kylie is a much improved player who provides the ability to play three different positions with her versatility,” said Pessia. “Bernadette is a smart player, who is great for the team and provides a calming influence. Rylee is a freshman who is smart, aggressive and is easy to coach. Brittany is a goaltender with great hands, a super attitude and she is capable of playing in big games. Lizzy is a freshman who is a smart player with excellent ball skills and she has the ability to play in the middle. Clara is consistent and versatile and has great ball skills. Allysa is a fast outside midfielder who is much improved. Sara is a forward who is another player with great ball skills and she has a nose for the net.”
What are the Lady Trojans’ team strengths?
“We have a lot of experience, including playing in District games,” said Pessia. “We have a lot of depth all over the field. We have a number of players who can finish, and I like the way the girls move the ball. The kids have played with each other for a long time and it shows. Also the communication on the field is good.
“Our goal is to build throughout the season and to peak in the tournament,” said Pessia. “We are optimistic entering the season.”