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  2014 Girls' Season Preview    

  By Aaron Brown

  February 2014

 

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THE UNDERDOGS: GIRLS

 

There are several teams that have good reason to be optimistic in 2014. Some have gone through the rebuilding process, some are going through it now, and others are finally putting things together to make a run at their best season in team history. Let's take a closer look at the teams that could be considered 'The Underdogs' this season:

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41. PROSPECT

The Knights are in position to make some definite noise in the MSL East division this season, as they return several starters to a team that could double their win total in 2014. They boast a balanced attack on the offensive end, with Amanda Fulk, Nikki Neumann and Mary Schiavone all returning to the starting lineup for head coach Natalie Rasor. Ellie McGough made an impact last season and should increase her production for the team as well. The Knights will continue to benefit from the emergence of sophomore goalie Lauren Broz, who took over the position in her first year of high school to rave reviews.

Head Coach: Natalie Rasor

Key Players: Amanda Fulk, Ellie McGough, Nikki Neumann, Mary Schiavone

Goalkeeper: Lauren Broz

Final 2013 Ranking: 42nd


42. BUFFALO GROVE


The Bison are loaded with potential entering the new year and could surprise a few teams during the 2014 season. Sarah Morosan and Bridget Whited return to lead the team on the offensive end. They will be joined by a large stable of players looking to make their mark, including Jessi Graziano, Alicia Harris, Katy Kirsh, Olivia Pontarelli and Rachel Rabs. If the majority of that group can play valuable minutes for new head coach Jeff Skalon, expect BG to challenge the rest of a crowded MSL East division and to last beyond the sectional quarterfinals after last year's early exit.


Head Coach: Jeff Skalon

Key Players: Jessi Graziano, Alicia Harris, Katy Kirsh, Olivia Pontarelli, Rachel Rabs

Players to Watch: Sarah Morosan, Bridget Whited

Goalkeeper: Rebecca Gaare

Final 2013 Ranking: 46th


43. RIVERSIDE-BROOKFIELD


The young Bulldogs program continues to make dramatic improvements each year, so expect nothing different from a talented roster of returning players in 2014. Dana Callanan had a breakout season and will be called upon to provide an offensive spark for R-B. Meanwhile, Lucia Adami and Sydney Veon were positive contributors last season and should play an increased role in the team's offensive plans moving forward. Jenny Jimenez and Destiny O'Day are two talented young players who could be asked to play valuable minutes this season for a team hoping to hurdle over the .500 barrier for the first time in team history.


Head Coach: TBA

Key Players: Lucia Adami, Dana Callanan, Jenny Jimenez, Destiny O'Day, Sydney Veon

Goalkeeper: Amy Frey

Final 2013 Ranking: 45th


44. MAINE WEST


The Warriors return several key components from last year's milestone 10-win season. The offense continues to revolve around talented playmaker Carly Romano, who led the team with 72 goals. She will be joined by Emily Morrison and Holly Wasicak on the offensive end, as both are expected to lift their scoring totals by a wide margin. Look for Veronica Dunn, Cassidy Larsen and Annie Picchiotti to play significant minutes for head coach Brett Unruh's squad, while Julia Huinker will be asked to take on the full-time goaltender duties to replace both Sarah Godawa and Tara Woodford.


Head Coach: Brett Unruh

Key Players: Veronica Dunn, Cassidy Larsen, Annie Picchiotti, Carly Romano, Holly Wasicak

Player to Watch: Emily Morrison

Goalkeeper: Julia Huinker

Final 2013 Ranking: 47th


 

45. NORTHSIDE


Northside finished a steady 2013 season with a third-place finish in the CPS Tourney and a sectional semifinal exit courtesy of a fellow CPS member (Lane) last May. With the returning players head coach Carlos Ceja has at his disposal, the Mustangs could improve on both their conference and sectional performances by the end of this campaign. Jane Patzke is the likely leader on the offensive end, where she will be joined by Tori Kingman, Ana Lee Pokrzywa and Jessica Skipper in trying to help NSP move beyond last season's 14-win total. They key to the team's success could be their defense, as an always well-coached bunch benefits significantly from the return of impressive goaltender Marti Hale.


Head Coach: Carlos Ceja

Key Players: Tori Kingman, Morgan Nicholson, Jane Patzke, Ana Lee Pokrzywa, Jessica Skipper

Goalkeeper: Marti Hale

Final 2013 Ranking: 48th


46. SCHAUMBURG

Schaumburg has several impact players returning from last season's roster that could get them headed in the right direction in 2014. Danielle Grubb and Britney Vasquez will be counted on to provide scoring punch,
Delaney Houts and Krystal Vezzetti should both be significantly improved on both ends of the pool, and Lily Becker and Claire Lynch should see increased minutes for head coach Beth Donatucci's squad. Katrina Vargo will be called upon to take over the full-time goaltending duties.

Head Coach: Beth Donatucci

Key Players: Lily Becker, Danielle Grubb, Delaney Houts, Clair Lynch, Britney Vasquez, Krystal Vezzetti

Goalkeeper: Katrina Vargo

Final 2013 Ranking: 55th


47. WAUBONSIE VALLEY


The Warriors have gone through several difficult seasons in recent years but have plenty of returning starters that could dramatically
improve their fortunes in 2014. Kimela Srey is an all-around talent that returns to lead the offense, where she will be joined by several positive contributors from the previous season, including Molly Devine, Sam Holzschu, Haley Mulherin and Taylor Tobiason. Waubonsie has two goaltenders who could make an impact, as Talyssa Melgoza and Ashley Ruskey could both play a big part in head coach Diana Mehl's plans this year.

Head Coach: Diane Mehl

Key Players: Molly Devine, Sam Holzschu, Haley Mulherin, Kimela Srey, Taylor Tobiason

Goalkeeper: Talyssa Melgoza/Ashley Ruskey

Final 2013 Ranking: 51st


48. HINSDALE SOUTH


The Hornets return several starters from last year's team and could climb into double-digit win territory if they can find an identity under new head coach Doug Junius. Melanie Lofgren returns to lead the offense while goalie Stephanie Schuller leads the team on the defensive end. Other returnees such as Abbey Driggers and Sara Ofenloch could give the offense a boost and help the Hornets surprise their West Suburban Conference rivals.


Head Coach: Doug Junius

Key Players: Abbey Driggers, Brianna Kirin, Melanie Lofgren, Sara Ofenloch, Jessica Ostrowska

Goalkeeper: Stephanie Schuller

Final 2013 Ranking: 54th


49. LAKE FOREST


Things are looking up for the Scouts this season, as they return four starters and have several younger players hoping to make a big impact. Abby Warren should pick up where she left off after a strong sophomore campaign to lead the offense, while Laura Meng returns in goal to lead the defense. Clare Wieland and Zoe Winemaster should add to the offensive attack, while Liv Johansson and Elise Vondra are among the young talent head coach Jessica Goldner will likely call on to get the team headed in a positive direction.


Head Coach: Jessica Goldner

Key Players: Elena Demet, Liv Johansson, Abby Warren, Clare Wieland, Zoe Winemaster, Elise Vondra

Goalkeeper: Laura Meng

Final 2013 Ranking: 53rd


50. HOFFMAN


The Hawks return several starters from last year's rebuilding project; if they continue to show signs of improvement, it could translate into double-digit wins and some Mid-Suburban League upsets in 2014. New head coach Chris Fetterman will look to veterans Nicole Kasman and Jessica Sullivan to light up the goal on the offensive end, while Allie Ouimet also has the potential to make major contributions. Casey Rawlings takes over in goal as the Hawks hope to make some noise during the conference season and in the playoffs.


Head Coach: Chris Fetterman

Key Players: Megan Bonney, Zoe Dorband, Nicole Kasman, Allie Ouimet, Jessica Sullivan

Player to Watch: Francia Morales

Goalkeeper: Casey Rawlings

Final 2013 Ranking: 58th


 

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