Girls soccer shines this season


Photo provided by: Anna Wesley

The girls varsity soccer team practices at Brantley South after school on Jan 22. The team won 10 out of their 15 games this season, making them eligible to move on to the district tournament.

Anna Wesley, Photo editor

Girls varsity soccer is commonly overlooked in the world of high school sports. However, maybe they should receive more attention. By attending just one practice it is easy to see that the bond between team members extends beyond good sportsmanship. The players are quick to congratulate each other on a good pass or shot and never complain over simple tasks. It is clear that their shared love of the sport, as well as the guiding hands of coaches, has brought them together to play their best on the field.

During the 2017-2018 school year, the team was last in their district. Making a comeback this year, they are now third out of eight for the district. The coaches attribute this climb in part to the flood of talent from this year’s freshman class.

We were very, very fortunate to have a number of very accomplished freshmen come in and play,” varsity soccer coach John Morand said. “But the combination really of [that] and the dynamics of the team itself actually also adds to our success. So having good players come in, but [also] having veteran players who actually now play better because they’re around players that are really accomplished and the dynamics of the team; they all get along.”

Being a part of any team can be a lot of work. Many of the girls are committed players and are interested in playing in college. In fact, in some of the games that the team lost this season, many players were missing because they were at college recruiting tournaments. The coaches often advocate to their athletes that it is important to give 100 percent in practice so that they can play 100 percent during the game. Even with the high standards set by the coaches and the sport, the girls remain dedicated through their love of the game. They get as much out of the sport as they put into it.

This team over the years has changed a lot, but it’s really taught me personally how to work with people no matter their demeanor with you, you always have to stay positive and be really friendly with everyone,” senior and goalie Lindsay Van Dyke said. “Conflict on the field can’t carry off the field.

Last season the girls varsity soccer team won a total of one game. This year however, winning 10 of their 15 games, they were eligible to move on to the district tournament where they initially played Seminole on Jan. 24 and won. They unfortunately lost their game against Lake Mary 1-4 on Jan. 29, taking them out of the tournament. As the team continues to improve their skills, excitement generates through both the coaches and players.

“[The most rewarding part about being a coach is] developing the relationships with the athletes that build the program into a stronger and stronger entity every day,” math teacher and assistant coach Melissa Dallenbach said. “You just see as the players are developing relationships, as coaches are understanding the players better and better, the whole program changing day to day and becoming something super cool and that you want to just be a part of every day.”