BY DAVE PEDERSEN
CROW RIVER NEWS
Come young and old, Rockford girls soccer coach Abbey Maus looks for her team to be competitive.
Rockford will count on five seniors and six ninth-graders to go with one player in grades 11, 10, eighth and seventh.
“Our program has two terrific captains, seniors Brianna Calder and Julia Tradahl,” notes Maus. “We also have three other talented senior players returning to the varsity, Mckenzy Belanger, Maddi Bartlett and Marie Jakubowski.”
Maus has some young talent in seventh-grader Kaley DeWolfe and eighth-grader Jade Ellis, who started last season. The coach says these young players bring both skill and energy.
“Calder and Trandahl both work well to organize the team, both playing the center midfielder position,” says Maus. “Trandahl is coming off of a summer of playing for Wright County traveling team and Calder is a natural athlete who is very smart about the game.”
Calder, who played in goal last year, has played shortstop in two state fastpitch softball tournaments and was a top scorer for the basketball team.
Rockford starts the season without ninth-grader Hailey Ziemer, who is rehabbing from a knee injury. Another talented ninth-grader is speedy forward Logan Henrich. The other ninth-graders are Haley Smith, Maddy Johnson, Mckenzie Rentz, Grace Rootness and Heidi Trandahl.
Returning to varsity are junior forward Hope Achtelik and sophomore Aleksa Zandstra. The goalie job is up for grabs between three players.
Maus adds, “Our strengths will stem from our seniors, who are very field aware and are great communicators for the rest of the team in ultimately controlling more of the game through possession.”
Rockford opens play at home against Delano, 7 p.m. Monday, Aug. 25. The team is home to Heritage Christian Academy, 5 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 26 and to Cambridge-Isanti, 7 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 28.
The Rocket boys soccer squad plays at Princeton, 1 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 21, at Sauk Rapids-Rice noon Saturday, Aug. 23 and the first home match is 7 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 26 against Heritage Christian Academy.