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Four Boyle seniors face new challenges in girls' soccer

August 11, 2003|JILL ERWIN

In some ways, the upcoming season is no different for the four seniors on the Boyle County girls soccer team.

Joanna Frauenhoffer, C.C. Leffew, Marianna Richardson and Tiffany Webb will all be starting, as they have each year of their high school careers. They will each fill an important role as two are the top returning scorers, one is a defensive key and one is in goal.

But then again, this year is unlike anything they've faced before. And how those four balance the responsibility of being leaders on a team loaded with young, unproven talent will say a lot about how Boyle does this year.

"I wouldn't ask for a better group of seniors," Frauenhoffer said. "I love playing with them. We do have some new freshmen and we are going to have to work hard this year. We're going to have fun with soccer and do the best we can."

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The Rebels will have 13 freshmen on this year's team, as many players as they had on last year's team. Boyle coach Brian Deem said he will need his seniors to step up in a big way.

"They're going to have to be complete leaders, the total package," Deem said. "They're the ones that are going to have to be under control when they get upset. They're going to have to be the ones that lead by example, communicating on and off the field, being the first one to practice, the last one to leave.

"When we ask for volunteers to do drills, they've got to be the ones that are stepping up. And they're doing that. Our success with these freshmen is going to be based on how well these seniors can keep their poise."

On the field, that shouldn't be a problem. The girls all said that this team isn't going to depend solely on them because of the talent evident not only in the freshmen, but in the returning sophomores and juniors. But they also know that it will take time to get that roster on the same page, and they will have to play a role in making that happen.

Drills designed to acquaint players with each other

Deem has spent plenty of time in practice on drills designed to help acquaint the players with each other.

"We're mainly trying to get to know the freshmen," said Leffew, the team's sweeper. "We already know what the sophomores and juniors can do, but we have a bunch of freshmen that are going to be really good. We need to know their names and what they can do."

Richardson, a forward, said she knows the seniors will have to take on leadership roles. But she also knows what kind of leader she wants to be - a supportive one.

"I remember when I was a freshman and people used to yell at me all the time and I didn't like it," Richardson said. "I like to be encouraged and I think encouragement is necessary. I'm going to take on the role of encouraging people and helping them out. Everybody needs encouragement."

Deem said he has faith his seniors will do what needs to be done. He knows there will be pressure on them, but that he knows they'll play like coaches on the field for him.

"When there's pressure, the best rise to the top and I feel confident they'll be able to do that," Deem said. "For the most part, they're going to carry the burden of keeping everybody under control and help guide the freshmen through a rough transition from middle school to high school soccer."

All four girls are optimistic about the season, saying the team will be fine by the time games roll around.

The team has set goals, aiming for district and region titles this year. Boyle has never won a regional title, but goalkeeper Tiffany Webb said she thinks this year's team could do it.

"We have all the skill and everything, if we work hard enough," Webb said. "We have to work our hardest to do it. I'm ready to play and have fun in my senior year."

"That's our number one goal this year, to get into the (regional) championship like we did last year and just win it this year," Leffew said. "That would be great. If I had to take that, I would. I wouldn't stop, but if that's all I could get, I would take that. We're just going to take it one step at a time."

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