Old and New : A Winning Combination

May 15th, 2014 | By Gary No Comments

tom-mayMost of the girls on the Monsignor Donovan Catholic High School soccer team have played together since middle school and even earlier. They have literally grown up together. Many have played club soccer together, and most of them play other sports together.

That kind of history and experience can give a team a big advantage because they have chemistry and trust that can be a huge advantage for a fast-paced team sport like soccer. As senior captains Ashley Burns and Balbina Ramos explain, “Everyone knows each other’s playing style, and new players quickly adapt and fit in … we also hang out together on weekends and we are just friends.” The girls also say that they are “drama-free on the field” so they don’t fight and that helps them stay focused and play better.

What’s new (or at least for the last two seasons) is a system of play that Coach Christian Allen brought to the team starting last season. The system they use puts less focus on positions and more on the role each player has during different phases of the game as they transition from offense to defense and back to offense. They try to always possess the ball and when they lose it, they quickly employ tactics to get it back. Coach Allen explains that last year they scored a ton of goals but gave up a few as they progressed all the way to the GISSA AA state finals. This year, they are focusing more on defense and it shows. Through the regular season (as we were writing this article, the team was in mid-season) they were undefeated and had only given up one goal (on a penalty kick). It seems like the MDCHS girls’ soccer team has found a winning combination that should take them deep into the playoffs and hopefully a state championship this year.

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