Fall Sports Preview 2015: A winning mixture of experience, youth, attitude and speed

  • Wed Sep 16th, 2015 5:23pm
  • Sports

Back row: Kevin Cullen (JV coach)

By Miles Crossen

Special to the Journal

It’s been said soccer is the third most popular team sport in the United States. If you were to ask and watch the 28 members of Friday Harbor High Schools Girl’s Varsity and Junior Varsity teams you’d think it is the most popular team sport.

According to head coach Paul Hopkins, “This team is an excellent mix of experience and youth. We have excellent attitude, decent speed and a strong desire to win.” With 13 returning players and most of the new team members playing for several years in what Hopkins refers to as “an excellent club program” on the island it seems as if this team is sure to be a force to be reckoned with.

They kicked off the season with two home games on Sept. 10 and Sept. 12, facing off long time league rival La Conner, followed by some non-league competition between Friday Harbor and Lynden Christian. On Sept. 14 the team faced Sedro-Woolley in non-league play.

Hopkins seemed to be pleased with this year’s schedule with 10 home games and only six off-island games. “Home games are always the preferred venue, especially living on the island,” he noted. “We get to host La Conner and Mount Vernon Christian, two of three contests at home which we’re happy about.”

The girls practice about two-hours every day they don’t have a game, except on Sundays. The Saturday schedule depends on a number of factors, which include honing particular ball handling skills and when they play their next game.

The team members and the coaching staff would like to express their appreciation to the Friday Harbor Fields Board, private donors, and the community for all the work done at the Carter Avenue Fields.

According to Coach Hopkins the practice field has been invaluable to maintaining a realistic practice schedule. He added, “The newly seeded field is green and we can’t wait to play on it next year.”

The girls soccer team lost their first game Sept. 10 to La Conner by a score of 2-1, and lost a second game Sept. 12 to Lynden, 5-0.