By Kathryn Wheeler, Journal contributor.
In just two short weeks, the girl’s varsity soccer team will be taking the field for the first time this season, battling Meridian High School on Sept. 8. Third-year coach Kevin Cullen, who coached the program to the State Championships in 2021, believes that goal setting, both as an individual and a team, will be one of the keys to the team’s success this year. ‘’My goals for this season are to continue building team unity, increasing personalized player development, and having a successful season with positive experiences for our athletes,” wrote Cullen in an email to The Journal. The team has historically struggled with their numbers, having too many students to play on one varsity squad, but too few to create a robust Junior Varsity and Varsity squad. This has required some players to be “swing players,” moving between the two teams, making it harder to create consistent chemistry with a team in flux. While certainly challenging, the overabundance of varsity-seeking players may be an indicator of hope for the program: “It’s a good problem to have as multiple teams in our league have had to discontinue their girls soccer programs,” wrote Cullen. Cullen hopes to help his players increase their soccer IQ’s, in order to “exploit situations throughout the games”, while also helping them understand how to be “more physical, more relentless, [and] more focused.” With a strong, talented core group of seniors, and a number of other excellent players he believes the team can go far.