Sophomore Hanna Leonard shoots on goal as she is guarded by classmate Alex Ward during a scrimmage following Tuesday mornings practice.
As far as goals go, the Brookings-Harbor High School Girls soccer team has just a couple: win the Far West League championship and make it to the state playoffs.
With seven returning seniors lacing up cleats and taking to the pitch on any given Tuesday or Thursday, the 2013 squad may have the keys necessary to make its goals a reality.
Brookings-Harbor High School soccer team seniors are from left: front row, Francesca Farr and Cristina Muñoz. Back row, Hannah Goergen, Hannah Baron, Karlie Gonzalez and Jade Heredia. (Not pictured: Mimi Fernandez)
“We want to make it all the way,” senior Karlie Gonzalez said. “Make it to the Far West League championships and beyond. We want a state championship. We can do it.”
Fellow senior forward Francesca Farr agreed.
“I think we have a great defense,” she said, “and that’s what is going to win it for us.”
First-year head coach Fernando Villa is optimistic about his teams’ chances of achieving its goals and knows that the only team that can stand in the Lady Bruins’ way is themselves.
“I’m not worried about any team in league,” he said. “I tell the girls we’re going to play my system and if we play it correctly we’re not going to worry about any other teams. We have to worry about ourselves, that is the only thing we have to worry about.
“Playing the right way is going to take us to the right places.”
While Villa may be new to the high school coaching scene, he has interacted with a number of the girls he is coaching now since they were young.
“I coached most of the girls in rec league and so I’ve known most of them since they were 10,” Villa said. “I know a lot of them like to play forward, but I’ve got a lot of good midfielders and defenders, too.”
One of the steps that the girls have chosen to work on to accomplish their goals is a sense of team unity.
“This year we’re going to be a lot closer than we were last year,” senior Jade Heredia said. “We trust each other and there isn’t any one person who has a really big head and has to do it all by themselves.”
Villa was in complete agreement and according to him, the change is palpable.
“Everybody feels how different the team is this year,” he explained. “My assistants feel it, I feel it and the girls feel it. And it is very important that we unite as a team and stay motivated that way.”
Villa will be assisted this year by Carol Leonard — also the head JV coach — Chaulene Worthey and Daniel Haro.
A full schedule of BHHS girls soccer as well as other fall sports will be found in a future edition of the Curry Coastal Pilot.