Taking a Closer Look at the Area Girls Soccer Teams

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Photo by Jeff Yoder

Ryan Murken

Your Prep Sports

City High

Coach: Phillip Hansen (1st season)

Assistant coaches: Corbin Scholz, Jeff Miller

Last season: 10-7

Returning starters: Madeline Pugh, Sr.; Sam Schroder, Sr.; Naomi Meurice, Sr.; Madelynn Fontana, Sr.; Callie Menzel, Soph.; Karissa Dilanni, Jr.; Stella Foster, Soph.; Ella Hennager, Sr.;  Lizzie Peters, Soph.; Eva Bailey, Sr., Emma Seydel, Jr.

Newcomers to watch: Sara Cassady, Fr.; Mia DePrenger, Fr.; Morgan Turner, Fr.; Sophia Lusala, Fr.; Katrina Wolfe, Soph.; Cecilia Sileo, Soph.; Muriel Brown, Jr.; Rocxana Carrera, Sr.

Headliner: The reigning MVC Valley Division keeper of the year, senior Naomi Meurice allowed 19 goals and made 111 saves last season as a junior

Keep an eye on: Iowa recruit Sam Schroder ranked second on the team with three goals and three assists last season as the focus of nearly every opposing game plan.

Circle the date: April 9 vs. West High. City High faces its cross-town rival in the annual boy/girl doubleheader at the University of Iowa Soccer Complex.

Outlook: First-year head coach Phillip Hansen takes over the program from Michael Prunty and inherits a roster loaded with experience.

City High returns 11 players with starting experience from a team that went 10-7 last season advancing to a 3A regional final.

Schroder returns as the Little Hawk’s top offensive weapon while Meurice gives City High one of the state’s best keepers.

Karissa Dilanni and Emma Seydel each had three goals a year ago while Madelynn Fontana and Ella Hennager all return after scoring two goals.

Liberty High

Coach: Frank Fiordellisi (2nd season)

Assistant coaches: Ryan Steward, Tyler Pauley

Last season: 6-12

Returning starters: Lily Anderson, Sr.; Megan Davis, Sr.; Bri Ervin, Jr.; Elise Hermiston, Soph.; Isabel Machlab, Soph.; Lucy Kaskie, Soph.

Other returning letterwinners: Debbie Bonilla, Jr.; Piper Koski, Jr.; Kaylee Deisbeck, Jr.; Rylie Baldes, Soph.; Olivia Heid, Soph.; Eden Grimes, Soph.

Newcomers to watch: Grace Heddens, Fr.; Sam Harvey, Fr.; Ava Warkentin, Fr.; Megan Sulwer, Soph.

Headliner: Sophomore Elise Hermiston returns to lead the Lightning attack after scoring two goals and posting a team-high eight goals last season.

Keep an eye on: Junior Bri Ervin will look to take a bigger role this season after scoring two goals and adding two assists last year.

Circle the date: May 16 vs. West High. Liberty High hosts rival West High in its first meeting with its cross-town foe.

Outlook: After a 2-8 start to the season Liberty High closed its inaugural varsity campaign by winning four of its final eight games.

Six starters return from last year’s squad highlighted by Hermiston and Ervin.

Seniors Lily Anderson and Megan Davis also returning with starting experience along with sophomores Isabel Machlab and Lucy Kaskie.

The Lightning will make the move into the Mississippi Valley Conference this season while climbing to Class 3A for the postseason.

Clear Creek Amana

Coach: Matt Harding (7th season)

Assistant coaches: Kasey Bortz

Last season: 10-9

Returning starters: Ellen Austin, Soph., F/M; Eliza Evans, Soph., D/M; Peyton Grafft, Soph., D; Lauren Riggle, Soph., M/F; Carsyn Gallagher, Jr., M/F; Ellie Waterbury, Jr., D; Liza Evans, Sr., D; Lillian Hennes, Sr., GK; Erin O’Keefe, Sr., D; Amelia Pereira, Sr., D.

Other returning letterwinners: Georgie Schuerer, Sr., M/F; Lexi Schau, Sr., F; Alexi Kimm, Sr., M; Hannah Shade, Jr., M/D; Alli Rummelhart, Jr., D; Avery Woodward, Soph., M; Issi Wetjen, Soph., D; Morgan Malli, Soph., D; Avery Liebe, Soph., D

Newcomers to watch: Madeline Shade, Fr., DEF; Celia Dunn, Fr., DEF

Headliner: Carsyn Gallagher exploded onto the scene last year as one of the most dynamic scorers in Class 2A scoring 17 goals on her way to earning first-team all-WAMAC West Division honors.

Keep an eye on: Amelia Perreira doesn’t have the stats of Gallagher but the senior is a stalwart defender for the Clippers and earned first-team all-WAMAC West Division honors last year.

Circle the date: May 21 vs. Marion. The Clippers close the regular season by hosting preseason fifth-ranked Marion in a WAMAC cross-divisional showdown.

Outlook: It took a little time for Clear Creek Amana to get going last season but the Clippers closed the year by winning eight of its final 10 games.

Ten starters return from that team that finished 10-9 after a 2-7 start to the season including the Clippers top four goal scorers from a year ago.

Gallagher and Perreira lead the way but the Clippers bring back plenty of other experienced players.

Lauren Riggle had 10 goals and a team-high nine goals last season while Ellen Austin and Avery Woodward each return after scoring four goals last season.

Senior Lillian Hennes returns in goal after earning honorable mention all-WAMAC West Division status last season.

Solon

Coach: Amanda Paulson (1st season)

Assistant coaches: Jeff Frerich

Last season: 5-11

Returning starters: Brenna Gogel, Jr., GK; Haley Melchert, Jr.; Kenzie Pentico, Sr.; Sylvia Havlicek, Jr.; Jayna Koffron, Sr.

Other returning letterwinners: Stella Mesch, Soph.; Piper Radcliffe, Sr.

Headliner: Junior Sylvia Havlicek led Solon with nine goals and ranked second on the team with four assists last season in her first season in the starting lineup.

Keep an eye on: Junior Haley Melchert earned WAMAC honorable mention all-East Division honors last spring in her first season as a full-time starter.

Circle the date: May 21 vs. Regina. Solon closes the regular season by hosting rival Regina in a non-conference match.

Outlook: First-year head coach Amanda Paulson takes over at Solon from John Tucker who spent 14 years leading the program.

Paulson has a solid nucleus returning to build around in year one with five starters returning from a team that went 5-11 last season.

Havlicek and Melchert headline the list of returning starters while junior Brenna Gogel is back after splitting time in goal last spring.

Seniors Jayna Koffron and Kenzie Pentico each return with starting experience while senior Piper Radcliffe and sophomore Stella Mesch are expected to make an immediate impact.

Regina

Coach: Ann Larew (4th season)

Assistant coaches: Kate Murray, Scott Miller, Rick Larew, Emilio Tovar, Gracie Larew, Jacque Ronnfeldt, Abby Beane, Will Urion

Last season: 11-8, Class 1A semifinals

Returning starters: Abigail Burger, Jr., GK/MF; Claire Conlon, Jr., MF; Claire Gaarde, Jr., MF/F; Bella Gasparoni, Soph., MF/F; Kennedy Scott, Jr., DEF/MF; Claire Sullivan, Jr., DEF; Emma Welter, Jr., F/MF

Other returning letterwinners: Maren Huss, Jr., DEF/MF; Steph Stenger, Jr., MF/GK

Newcomers to watch: Hope Simpson, Fr.; Lillian Simpson, Fr.; Carrigan O’Connor, Sr.

Headliner: Junior Claire Conlon is expected to take on a larger role in the Regina attack after scoring two goals and adding two assists last season.

Keep an eye on: Claire Gaarde returns after scoring a goal and ranking second on the team with three assists last season.

Circle the date: May 24 vs. Davenport Assumption. Regina closes the regular season by hosting three-time defending state champion Davenport Assumption.  

Outlook: There are holes to fill from a team that reached the state semifinals last June but Regina brings back seven players with starting experience as it attempts to return to the state tournament for the eighth consecutive season.

Regina must replace its top two scorers that accounted for 24 goals and nine assists along with its starting goal keeper from last year’s team that won three of its final four games.

Conlon and Gaarde are expected to step into larger offensive roles while juniors Kennedy Scott, Claire Sullivan, Emma Welter and Abigail Burger all return with starting experience.

Welter had two goals and two assists a season ago and sophomore Bella Gasparoni is back as well.

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