It will be hard for the Evergreen girls soccer team to top last season, a year in which they won a share of the Northwest Ohio Athletic League championship, their first as a program. And, with several losses due to graduation, this season could at times be a struggle.
“Having a young group I expect our season to be a little up and down, but when they play together as a team, I believe they will compete and surprise a few teams,” said head coach Josh Radel.
Key pieces returning for the Vikings this season are Raegan Radel (second team All-NWOAL, honorable mention All-District) and Lydia Gleckler (honorable mention All-District). They also get back Hannah Double, Kiersten Taylor, Kayla Nidek, Sofia Rodriguez, Rebekah Vanwormer, Brooklyn Spradlin, Bentlie Setmire and Kara Huntzinger.
Newcomers are Hannah Wilson, Annabelle Abec, Alivia Mitchey and Sophia Goodson.
“Our midfield communication is going to be a key part of our success this season,” said Coach Radel.
However, the Vikings are losing eight athletes off last year’s league title winning team.
Most notably, Paige Radel (first team All-NWOAL/All-District/All-Ohio) and Sydney Woodring (first team All-NWOAL/All-District) have departed.
Evergreen is also losing Kenzie Mitchey (honorable mention all-league), Kayla Gleckler (honorable mention all-league), Kaylee Hein, Callie Benner, Izzy Barkhimer and Leise Hernandez.
“We lost a lot of talent from last year, so we will be young and trying to find our way,” admitted the Viking mentor.
The Vikes finished 4-0-2 in the NWOAL last season. Their objective this season will be to steadily improve throughout the season, possibly upsetting some league favorites along the way.
“We are young and inexperienced in a lot of positions, but we still have some of the best talent on the field in NWO,” said Coach Radel. “If we play as a team, I believe we will be standing in the top third of the league.”
Evergreen suffered a loss to Bowling Green in the season opener Friday, Aug. 12. They next host Ottawa-Glandorf this Saturday and then Springfield on Monday.
Reach Max Householder at 419-335-2010.