Mavericks relying on senior talent to lead the way | Girls soccer

By David Pan | Sep 13, 2018
Photo by: David R Pan Senior Jaislyn Hart dribbles with the ball during Meadowdale’s 3-0 victory over Oak Harbor.

The Meadowdale girls soccer team has grown up.

Two years ago, a group of sophomores joined the varsity squad and though talented the Mavericks took more than their fair share of lumps from their Wesco 3A South competition. Meadowdale won only two out of 16 contests.

A year later, the junior class helped Meadowdale to winning league and overall records (5-3-4, 6-5-5). Those juniors are now seniors and are ready to continue their climb up the league standings.

The Mavericks opened league play with a 3-0 decision over Oak Harbor Thursday, Sept. 6, at Edmonds Stadium.

Senior co-captain Jaislyn Hart is excited with the talent the Mavericks has assembled for the 2018 campaign.

“I really enjoy how confident we all are. We have a lot of senior power,” Hart said. “It was awesome to start off the season with a win and start on a positive note. We hope to build on that.”

Hart, senior Taylor Kesselring and senior Claire Jackson scored goals for Meadowdale, which led 1-0 at halftime. Senior goalkeeper Camryn Cassidy recorded the shutout.

Mavericks coach Mike Nelson praised his players’ ability to make adjustments after halftime.

“The girls came out there and executed,” he said. “I thought it was a big difference – night and day between the first half and the second and that was thanks to the girls really being coachable.”

Senior co-captain Cassidy Gamble added that Meadowdale picked up the energy in the second half.

“Everyone was going hard to the ball,” she said. “Everyone was just giving their best effort.”

All the game experience the senior class has played the last three years definitely has helped develop those players’ skills.

“Two years ago, we were considered very young and I think our record (2-13-1) showed that,” Nelson said. “As these girls have gotten older, a lot of them have three, four years of varsity experience under their belts. It’s been a real big benefit to having that kind of experience.”

Hart and Gamble both agree that the Mavericks need to continue to build on their communication.

“I think we need a little more team bonding to create that kind of unity amongst everyone that should push us over,” Gamble said.

“Our communication is key,” Hart added. “It’s vital to a team to get to that next level.”

Meadowdale lost 1-0 to Squalicum in a district play-in game last year. The Mavericks’ last district tournament appearance was in 2015.

“We’re going to continue focus on building up our team chemistry and trying to improve every week,” Nelson said.

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