PLAYERS TO KNOW
Savannah Beetcher, Sr., Fairview — A Central Michigan recruit, Beetcher is a controlling force in the midfield for the Knights who also should help offset some of the offense Fairview lost to graduation.
Lauren Esler, Jr., Centaurus — Has 34 goals in two years with the Warriors, and she will continue to see a touch on every possession.
Maria Fayeulle, Sr., Niwot — The Northwestern recruit compiled 11 goals and three assists for the Cougars last season and is expecting even bigger things in 2014.
Katie Forsee, Sr., Broomfield — The Eagles’ leading goal-scorer last year should continue to be a force within a very tactical system.
Maddie Kessler, So., Mead — Scoring skills will still be needed, but she’ll also provide some solid assists for the Mavericks.
Kelsey Killean, Sr., Legacy — Will look to lead the Lightning to a strong follow-up on the team’s first final four appearance in 2013.
Jamie Kirkland, Sr., Silver Creek — The Raptors goalie has a strong defense in front of her, but she is athletic as they come between the posts.
Cassie Owens, Sr., Monarch — Returning from injury, Owens could help the Coyotes make some big strides this season.
Jenna Schemmel, Jr., Silver Creek — After tallying 35 points last year, the forward should help the Raptors get even more creative this season.
Reci Smith, Jr., Fairview — Knights offense has a solid finisher in Smith, who scored 14 goals last season.
Brittney Stark, Sr., Broomfield — Eagles potent offense will funnel through the senior striker often.
Bri Wetmore, Jr., Peak to Peak — Could be the Pumas’ No. 1 option this year, and that’s not a bad thing at all.
Regular season for all three classifications must be complete by May 2. Playoffs begin on May 6 with 32-team seeded brackets for each class, leading up to championship games on May 20 (3A) and May 21 (5A and 4A) at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park.
TEAM BY TEAM OUTLOOK
COACH: Ryan Henkel (second season)
LAST YEAR: 8-7-2; 7-3-1 Front Range League
RETURNING STARTERS: Mariah Alexander (Jr., D); Dani Davis (Sr., D); Chantal Deroos (Sr., M); Zoe Dulchnios (Sr., D); Laura Greer (So., F); Keile Kropf (Sr., M); Kelley McQuillen (Sr., F).
OTHERS TO WATCH: Sarah Radzihovsky (Sr., F); Elsy Segovia-Zavala (Jr., M/F).
OUTLOOK: Boulder saw much success in the Front Range League last year and will look to break through with a tough non-league schedule once again. Coach Henkel is looking for moderate improvements in each game and the team should be able to rely on an experienced defense to keep every match close.
COACH: Jim Davidson (17th season)
LAST YEAR: 16-3-1; 7-0 Northern League
RETURNING STARTERS: Makena Bambei (So., M); Katie Forsee (Sr., M); Paige Lindbloom (Sr., GK); Kerri Marquardt (Sr., M); Hailey Mazzola (Jr., D); Brooke Quinn (Jr., M); Kayla Snyder (Sr., M); Brittney Stark (Sr., F); Michaela Stark (So., F).
OTHERS TO WATCH: Brooklyn Mooney (So., M); Zoe Zinis (So., D/F).
OUTLOOK: The Eagles are going to be a tough matchup year in and year out, but with the returning roster and transfers Mooney (from Legacy) and Zinis (from Mullen) thrown into the mix, Davidson has “extremely high expectations.” There are senior leaders sprinkled across the field, with the assembly of the back line perhaps the only question mark.
COACH: Mario Bezzina (fifth season)
LAST YEAR: 10-3-3; 5-1-1 Northern League
RETURNING STARTERS: Morgan Brendefur (Jr., M/F); Danelle Dondelinger (Sr., M); Lauren Esler (Jr., M/F); Maddison Hogan (So., D); Kathy Tran (Sr., GK); Jamie Tucotte (So., M); Kelsey Wood (Sr., D).
OTHERS TO WATCH: Taylor Lynch (Sr., D/M); Rylee Stever (Sr., M/F); Diedre Strohl (Sr., D).
OUTLOOK: After finishing high in the Northern last season, the Warriors went on an unprecedented playoff run that gave them a lot of pride but also a lot of motivation. Centaurus will have some talent and experience peppered around the pitch, and Esler should figure as one of the league’s premier scorers.
DAWSON SCHOOL MUSTANGS
COACH: David Martinez (second season)
LAST YEAR: 4-4-2; 3-3-2 Class 3A Region 7
RETURNING STARTERS: Emily Barrett (Sr., D); Morgan Powers (Jr., M); Isabella Roshko (So., M/F).
OTHERS TO WATCH: Taylor Folwell (Fr., D); Emma Grizack (Fr., M/F); Hannah Isenhart (Fr., M).
OUTLOOK: The Mustangs were very close to the playoffs last year with only 13 girls on the roster, and things are looking even more positive as Dawson will have about 20 this year. The climb in numbers, Martinez said, could mean the difference in a couple games. The team is looking to have some immediate contributions from a few freshmen, including Grizack, a transfer from North Carolina.
COACH: Dan Niedringhaus (second season)
LAST YEAR: 13-4-1; 8-3-0 Front Range League
RETURNING STARTERS: Savannah Beetcher (Sr., F); Gaelyn Crowder (Jr., D); Melissa Cuddington (Sr., M); Sophie Fear (Jr., D); Nancy Ingham (Sr., M); Hailey Nichols (Jr., D); Reci Smith (Jr., F); Issi Stahl (Sr., M); Pyranee Steiner (Sr., D); Avery Tallman (So., GK).
OTHERS TO WATCH: Laura Hutchinson (Jr. GK); Emily Kaplan (So., F); Emme Strongwater (So., F); Sierra Szeto (So., M); Alison Zech (So., D).
OUTLOOK: It starts at the back for the Knights, with both goalies returning to combine with a deep defense in 2014. A senior-heavy midfield should be pretty good at winning possession, and after that, Smith (14 goals last year) and Beetcher (five goals) can take over. Expect the Knights to be in the top third of the FRL at the very least.
COACH: Chad Eisentrager (fourth season)
LAST YEAR: 6-6-2; 5-5-2 Tri-Valley League
RETURNING STARTERS: Ryann Giggey (So., D); Melanie Lathrop (Sr., F); Shyanna Neu (Sr., GK); Sam Teller (Jr., M); Brittney Washington (Sr., D).
OTHERS TO WATCH: Taylor Brooks (Fr., D); Annie Feauto (Fr., M).
OUTLOOK: With only two automatic playoff berths coming out of the Tri-Valley, competition is stiff but Frederick could be right there at the end if some goal-scorers emerge. Eisentrager believes the talent pool at FHS is deeper than it ever has been, which could help translate a couple more of the closer contests into wins for the Warriors.
HOLY FAMILY TIGERS
COACH: George Connolly (sixth season)
LAST YEAR: 8-6-1; 5-3-1 Class 3A Region 6
RETURNING STARTERS: Charley Clements (So., M); Hannah Disberger (Jr. M); Domi Giron, (Jr., M); Taylor Johnson (Jr., F); Shannon Langfield (So., D); Sarah Miller (Jr., D); Kendall Russell (Sr., F); Maggie Spitzer (Jr., GK).
OTHERS TO WATCH: Karelyn Caviness (Fr., F); Kelton Hipkins (Sr., F); Megan McGillen (Jr., M); Emma Stokes (So., D); Carmen Woods (Fr., M).
OUTLOOK: Connolly is very confident his team is prepared to make a run through the Metro League again, and the tradition established at HF should be reason enough. However, the Tigers just kept getting better last year, and that should help the eight returning starters jump out of the gates fast. Offense should increase, which could help a defense that lost two all-state players.
JEFFERSON ACADEMY JAGUARS
COACH: Denise Sutton (second year)
LAST YEAR: 6-8; 3-6 Class 3A Region 6
RETURNING STARTERS: Marissa Chapman (Jr., M); Mollie Heitman (Sr., D); Hannah Menees (Jr., M); Bree Miles (Sr., M); Mariah Sharp (Jr., D); Kayla Tennal (Jr., D); Ally Thimsen (Sr., M); Heidi Wendt (Jr., F); Alycia Wright (Jr., F).
OTHERS TO WATCH: Jeneka Chapman (Fr., M); Jayla Elstad (Fr., D); Kassidy Hastings (So., GK); Morgan Menees (Fr., F); Kristi Nogai (Fr., D).
OUTLOOK: With just two seniors last year, the Jags are looking at 2014 as potentially a big year, especially with a growth in numbers to help them out. Sutton has a bevy of club soccer girls and they all seem to have played together, meaning there’s some continuity already brewing. Jefferson Academy is a possess-first team, and they Jaguars will be breaking in a new home field this season.
COACH: David Castro (fifth season)
LAST YEAR: 16-3-0; 10-1-0 Front Range League
RETURNING STARTERS: Jasmine Beaulieu (Sr., D); Maddie Gallegos (So., D); Madlyn Huber (Sr., M); Ariana Jimenez (Sr., F); Kaylee Kennedy (So., M); Kelsey Killean (Sr., F); Sammy Privett (Sr., GK); Madison Stone (Sr., D); Brooke Williams (Sr., M).
OTHERS TO WATCH: Abby Deakin (Fr., D); Carly Faust (So., D); Makenna O’Grady (Jr., F); Kylie Thomas (So., M).
OUTLOOK: The Front Range League is up for grabs between a few teams annually, and for Castro the goal is to be consistent enough to be given the chance to be that team. The returning core of players will help in that mission, led by Killean, one of the league’s best attackers. Though Deakin is young, she is expected to lock things down along with several seniors on the back line.
COACH: Mike DiGiallonardo (first season)
LAST YEAR: 6-7-2; 3-4 Northern League
RETURNING STARTERS: Liz Cameron (Sr., F); Destiny Lalaguna (Jr., D); Laura McConahy (Jr., F); Courtney McDonald (Jr., M); Elena Michalski (Sr., D); Maddy Schwartz (Sr., M); Megan Tulenko (Sr., D); Katie Waugaman (Sr., F); Kylie Woodrum (Jr., M).
OTHERS TO WATCH: Carley Garcia (Jr., M); Mattie Horn (Jr., D); Kristy Lee (Jr., M); Danielle Smith (Jr., F).
OUTLOOK: DiGiallonardo takes over the girls program looking for a top-half finish in the Northern League, and the Trojans do have a good amount of returners from last year’s team. The biggest issue for Longmont right now is that both goalies are injured, not an easy position to fill while they are on the mend. Longmont’s preseason schedule includes a few 5A teams in addition to defending 3A champ Peak to Peak.
COACH: Mike Schulz (fourth season)
LAST YEAR: 10-4-2; 8-3-1 Tri-Valley League
RETURNING STARTERS: Sarah Imhoff (So., D); Alex Juarez (Jr., M); Meddie Kessler (So., M); Morgan Lu (Sr., F); Shayna Maypole (Sr., GK); Avery Sears (Jr., M); Acacia Stephen (Sr., D).
OTHERS TO WATCH: Molly Gunhus (So., F); Danielle Higgins (Sr., F); Jesse Keener (Fr., D); Camilla Lee (So., F); Kelsey Martin (So., M); Hunter Pond (So., M).
OUTLOOK: With the rise to the 4A level, the Mavericks did not miss a beat last season as they finished second in the Tri-Valley. Twelve players are gone from that team, but Schulz is confident in the core of returners overall. Kessler had a great freshman year with 15 goals, and now the challenge will be to spread the offense a bit while continuing to play a restricting defensive game.
COACH: Eric Schmidt (second season)
LAST YEAR: 1-13-0; 0-10-0 Front Range League
RETURNING STARTERS: Nicole Barbour (Sr., M); Renae Deiter (Jr., D); Megan Lacy (Sr., M); Kaylee Mickens (Jr., GK); Melissa Myer (So., F); Kathleen Negri (Sr., F); Emiko Patterson (So., D); Madison Rasmussen (Jr., D); Kayla Sehnert (Sr., M).
OTHERS TO WATCH: Brittany Bruder (Jr., M); Sarah Holland (Fr., M); Cassie Owens (Sr., F); Aubrey Samuelson (Fr., M/D); Bailey Wristen (Jr., M).
OUTLOOK: Success starts with consistency for the Coyotes, and Schmidt returns for a second season looking to guide a matured group of players including nine returning starters. Senior Cassie Owens, who was injured last season, is an impact player, and Kristin Barbour also is a key player returning after missing last season. The Coyotes should be much more competitive.
COACH: Troy Tewalt (13th season)
LAST YEAR: 4-9-0; 2-7-0 Class 3A Region 7
RETURNING STARTERS: Amanda Cook (Sr., D); Alex Cuervorst (So., F); Kalina Culver (Jr., GK); Hailey Doane (Jr., M); Gillian Nasty (Jr., D); Sarina Perret (Sr., M); Rosie Pineau (Sr., M); Anika Ramey (Sr., M); Maggie Rockett (Jr., F); Natalie Wadell (Sr., D).
OUTLOOK: The Panthers have some solid returners in key spots, but they also have to fill out their team with some players who are brand new to the sport. Learning and gelling quickly will be paramount to success in the region, a typically tough one.
COACH: Rob Johnson (first year)
LAST YEAR: 6-6-2; 2-3-2 Northern League
RETURNING STARTERS: Azzy Aguayo (Sr., GK); Katie Coody (Sr., D); Maria Fayeulle (Sr., F); Shannon Fischer (Jr., D); Lauren Fitzgibbons (Sr., M); Caroline Moore (So., F); Kelly Sheeran (Sr., M); Maddison Studebaker (Jr., F); Hanna Triem (Jr., D).
OTHERS TO WATCH: Taylor Gabel (Sr., M).
OUTLOOK: Johnson, also the boys coach, takes over the girls team after being an assistant for the past couple years, and the Cougars have a solid base to build around in the tight Northern League. Fayeulle is the clear-cut team leader, but there are a group of seniors looking to make this last year a good one. Gabel, who transferred in last year, is the center-mid and Johnson is hoping for big things for Studebaker.
PEAK TO PEAK PUMAS
COACH: Joe Swanson (first year)
LAST YEAR: 16-2-2; 8-0-1 Class 3A Region 6
RETURNING STARTERS: Madison Corona (Sr., M); Jordan Harjes (Sr., M); Sarah Shepherd (Jr., GK); Brianna Wetmore (Jr., M).
OTHERS TO WATCH: Rachel Fitzsimmons (Fr., M/F); Rebecca Thompson (Fr., F).
OUTLOOK: Swanson has been with the program for years, so there won’t be much of a philosophical change for the two-time defending Class 3A champs. But there probably won’t be another Belle Morel on the field, either. Wetmore and Corona will be heavily relied upon to fill the scoring void, and Swanson said Thompson could be an offensive weapon right off the bat. Interestingly, goalie Sarah Martinez decided to focus on track this year, but Sarah Shepherd will be a solid starter.
SILVER CREEK RAPTORS
COACH: Pat Monacelli (fourth season)
LAST YEAR: 9-3-3; 4-1-2 Northern League
RETURNING STARTERS: Emily Atwood (So., M); Maddie Bertrand (So., D); Maggie Chuang (Jr., D); Lexi Dageenakis (So., M), Sage Feiner (So., M/F); Katy Foster (So., M/F); Bayly Hermann (So., M); Jamie Kirkland (Sr., GK); Ashley Martin (Jr., M); Lauren Martin (Jr., M/D); Miranda Salo (Jr., M/F); Jenna Schemmel (Jr., F/M); Kaari Von Bernuth (Jr., D).
OTHERS TO WATCH: Tiana Chandler (So., M/D); Jordan Conilogue (Jr., M/D); Mikayla Gaffney (Fr., M); Victoria Kline (Sr., M/D); Maya Perrin (Jr., M); Rebecca Showers (Sr., D); Sophie Staff (Sr., D).
OUTLOOK: With a mostly young group of players, the Raptors were in every game they played that they didn’t end up winning, even losing a 1-0 decision to Evergreen in the second round of the 4A state tournament. The offense should be more confident with Schemmel leading the charge, and Kirkland is an athletic keeper who likely will rack up several shutouts. A top-three league finish is almost a shoo-in.
COACH: Luis Chavez (second season)
LAST YEAR: 5-8-2; 5-5-2 Tri-Valley League
RETURNING STARTERS: Haley Balentine (Sr., D/M/F); Alexandra Hellenberg (So., D/M/F); Kortney Honstein (So., D/M); Rachel Kissinger (So., D/M); Rebecca Kissinger (Sr, GK/F); Jessica Parkinson (Sr., M/F); Melissa Pond (Sr., M/F); Marissa Rogers (Sr., D/M/F); Kaitlyn Sullivan (So., D/M/F).
OTHERS TO WATCH: Monica Overturf (Sr., D/F); Amber Montante, Leah Erickson.
OUTLOOK: The Falcons have a solid group of sophomores who gained valuable experience as freshmen, and that should push the program along nicely in 2014. Montante and Erickson were injured last year and look to add depth to the squad, while Chavez believes there will be some freshmen once again who will play varsity.