Skip to content

Girls soccer: Under former pro Abolaji, Frederick continues hot play against Berthoud

Xitlali Guereca scored four goals in the win

BERTHOUD — Frederick's Xitlali Guereca and ...
Brent W. New/
Frederick’s Xitlali Guereca and Lorena Heil celebrate a goal Thursday, April 28, 2022. (Brent W. New/

BERTHOUD — A professional soccer player for 12 years, Sola Abolaji is well read in the intricacies needed to be a winner on the pitch.

Time will tell how effective he can utilize all his knowledge of the game in building a winning program at Frederick.

Under a muted sky Thursday evening in Berthoud, the first-year coach of the school’s girls program watched as his young team took another step in its improvement, routing the host Spartans 11-1 in a mercy-rule, shortened game.

The mood was jovial in the rout. Junior striker Xitlali Guereca netted four goals, including the final two to stop the game in 60th minute. Olivia Carter and Emma Phillips each had two goals.

Abolaji was a calming presence at the end of the visitors bench. He was able to rotate in his entire varsity roster in its third win in its last four games.

Brent W. New/
BERTHOUD — Frederick’s Abby Larsen and Berthoud’s Maggie Tow compete for possession Thursday, April 28, 2022.

“We were coming in to set the foundations and help them out, but as they pick it up and start to get it, us coaches fall back,” he said. “They have the responsibility now.”

Phillips opened the scoring in the 10th minute.

Briefly after rattling the crossbar, the sophomore benefitted off a Berthoud turnover deep in its zone and ripped a shot high and into the left of the net. She set up Carter for Frederick’s second just minutes later.

Guereca took over from there, scoring two in the opening half, one with her dominant left foot, and the other with the right. Her teammates demanded she do her signature dance after her goals, and she obliged.

“It’s been amazing (this season),” Guereca said. “I’ve learned a lot of new things to become a better player. The little things, the basic things, it’s just amazing knowing the knowledge (Abolaji) has, teaching us and making us a better team and players.”

Frederick, which its coach said focused heavily on defense early in the season, failed to score across their first four games, but has recently hit its offensive groove.

Over the last two games, it has scored 18 of its 31 goals of the season. Over its last four games, it has allowed just two.

Despite it, it remains outside the projected postseason picture with two games remaining.

“Obviously we want better results on the scoreboard, but we’ve had really good results as far as their mentality and work rate,” Abolaji said. “That’s our scoreboard. Performing with the right mentality, the right work rate and just being a better teammate to each other.”

Berthoud lost its 11th straight game as it celebrated Senior Night. Ava Reed scored the Spartans’ 11th goal of the season, striking a long, looping shot that got over the head of keeper Elaina Leither in the 38th.

The Spartans will be home against Skyview Saturday.

Frederick will host Riverdale Ridge Tuesday.

Brent W. New/
BERTHOUD — Frederick’s Abby Larsen plays a header Thursday, April 28, 2022.