Seniors give Panthers big kick

¦ Return three All- EWC players from league champion
by Greg Ceilley of The Review staff


MEGHAN ROELSE (19), senior defender, will help anchor the Plymouth girls soccer team’s defense this season. Roelse was an All-EWC first-team pick in 2013. — Review file photo MEGHAN ROELSE (19), senior defender, will help anchor the Plymouth girls soccer team’s defense this season. Roelse was an All-EWC first-team pick in 2013. — Review file photo PLYMOUTH – With a talented core of players to build around, the Plymouth girls soccer team has a bright outlook for the 2014 campaign.

The Panthers return seven starters, including three All-Eastern Wisconsin Conference picks, among nine letter winners from last year’s co-EWC championship squad. PHS finished 6-0-1 in the league and 14-4-1 overall.

Plymouth lost to No. 2-ranked Pewaukee in the Division 2 regional finals, 2-0, after a 2-0 win over East Troy in the semifinals.

“We have a strong group of returning varsity members,” said Panther head coach Brad Feick who enters his third full season at the helm.

“The leadership of this year’s senior group to encourage others to lift weights and condition during the winter in preparation for the season drew many in to follow their lead. Our newcomers are ath- letic and are eager to contribute on the varsity level.”

The Panthers’ returning All- EWC players include senior defender

Meghan Roelse, a first-team choice; senior midfielder-forward Elle Klecka, second team; and senior goalkeeper Sophie Hau, honorable mention. Roelse and Hau were key players in the Panthers’ stout defense which surrendered only one goal in 11 matches versus EWC opponents in 2013.

The other returning starters are senior midfielders Mackenzie Haese, Brooke Reichert and Liz Fohr, and senior forward Erin Falk. The other letter winners are senior defender Haley Olsen and junior midfielder-goalkeeper Kathryn Aukerman.

Feick said senior leadership, passing and chemistry are the team’s main strengths heading into the season.

“We have continued to focus on possessing the ball in tight spaces and being able to maintain control of the ball. Throughout the year we’ll continue to get better,” Feick pointed out.

“Every player can pass and move. This group knows each other well. The eight returning seniors have played three years of varsity soccer together.”

He mentioned the Panthers’ weak areas.

“We need to get better at finishing around the goal. When an opportunity arises, we need to be able to score that goal. Hopefully, finishing turns out to be one of our strengths,” said Feick.

“We are quite balanced. Many of our players can play multiple positions which creates quite a bit of depth all over the field,” said Feick.

“While Klecka and Fohr primarily play as outside mids, both can play forward too. Klecka can also shift into a defensive position as well. The same can be true with most of the girls.

“One area that we’ll need to secure is our forward – Falk, Kasey Lonergan, Olivia Jankowski, Elizabeth Bolland, Klecka, Aukerman, and Reichert – all can play forward but going into the season we are looking to see which players can pick up some of the scoring load.

The Panthers graduated their top scorer and assist player from last season in forward Becca Ebbott who was the EWC’s Player of the Year. Ebbott scored 21 goals and had eight assists.

“Roelse will anchor a young defensive unit. Emily Meinnert, Kaylee Koenig, and Haley Olsen are all new varsity starters,” said Feick.

Feick said all of the varsity newcomers have impressed him.

“Kaylee Koenig, a freshman, has demonstrated strong passing, movement and knowledge of the game. Hannah Mauk and Lizzy Francis are two outside midfielders who can fly in space,” he observed.

“Kasey Lonergan controls the ball well when it’s at her feet. Holli Harms understands spacing and can make good passes into space. Olivia Jankowski and Elizabeth Bolland, two sophomores, seem to have great chemistry. Emily Meinnert is strengthening our back line with Roelse.”

Feick said the keys for the team to have success are to remain focused on our goal of improving every day, establish chemistry quickly and maintain a commitment to defense.

Feick sized up the EWC race. Sheboygan Falls shared the title with PHS last season.

“Until Sheboygan Falls is knocked out of first place entirely, they have to be considered the favorites,” he said.

“New Holstein has an experienced team coming back and Campbellsport is always a tough game. I would also have to throw our name in contention as well.”

Feick’s top goals this year are to improve after every practice and every game of the season, win the EWC crown and make a strong playoff run.

PLYMOUTH GIRLS
SOCCER SCHEDULES
Varsity
April 1 – Grafton, @ Milwauk., L 2-0
April 3 – West Bend East, here
April 8 – Sheboygan North, here
April 10 – Kiel, here
April 12 – @ Sheboygan South
April 15 – @ Waupun
April 17 – West Bend West, here
April 22 – Sheboygan Falls, here
April 24 – Kewaskum, here
April 29 – New Holstein, here
May 1 – @ Slinger
May 5 – @ Campbellsport
May 8 – @ Kiel
May 13 – Waupun, here
May 15 – Hartford, here
May 17 – @ West Bend West Invite
May 20 – @ Sheboygan Falls
May 22 – @ Kewaskum
May 27 – @ New Holstein
June 2 – Campbellsport, here
June 5 – Regional, TBA
Junior Varsity
April 1 – Grafton, @ Milwaukee
April 3 – West Bend East, here
April 8 – Sheboygan North, here
April 10 – Kiel, here
April 12 – @ Sheboygan South
April 15 – @ Waupun
April 17 – West Bend West, here

April 22 – Sheboygan Falls, here
April 24 – Kewaskum, here
April 29 – New Holstein, here
May 1 – @ Slinger
May 5 – @ Campbellsport
May 6 – @ Two Rivers
May 8 – @ Kiel
May 13 – Waupun, here
May 15 – Hartford, here
May 20 – @ Sheboygan Falls
May 22 – @ Kewaskum
May 27 – @ New Holstein
May 29 – Two Rivers, here
June 2 – Campbellsport, here
PLYMOUTH VARSITY
GIRLS SOCCER ROSTER
Seniors – *Sophie Hau (goalkeeper), *Liz Fohr (midfielder), *Mackenzie
Haese (mid.), *Erin Falk (forward),
*Elle Klecka (mid.-for.), *Haley Olsen
(defender), *Brooke Reichert (mid.),
Holli Harms (mid.) and *Meghan Roelse (def.).
Juniors – *Kathryn Aukerman
(mid.-goal.), Kasey Lonergan (for.),
Emily Meinnert (def.) and Hannah
Mauk (mid.).
Sophomores – Elizabeth Bolland
(for.-goal.), Lizzy Francis (def.-mid.)
and Olivia Jankowski (for.).
Freshmen – Kaylee Koenig (def.)
* - Returning letter winner.


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