Many Main Line girls’ soccer squads featuring new look in 2015

While several Main Line high school girls’ soccer squads enjoyed successful seasons last year, including Conestoga (10-1 in the Central League) and Agnes Irwin (10-2 in the InterAc, and a PAISAA semifinalist), many of the local teams now feature a new look this fall, with six first-year head coaches taking over the helm of their respective teams (Academy of Notre Dame, Baldwin School, Episcopal Academy, Friends’ Central, Merion Mercy Academy and Radnor). Here’s a look at how the Main Line high school girls’ soccer teams shape up this fall:

Academy of Notre Dame
Head coach: Ben Davey, first year.
Last year’s record: 6-13-1.
Key returnees: senior forward Phoebe McClernon, senior midfielder Alexis Odgers, junior defender Claire Nappi, junior midfielder Brooke Spino.
Others to watch: freshman midfielder Maggie O’Brien.
Outlook: Davey said, “It is exciting times for Notre Dame soccer, with the new home field and a whole new coaching staff. On the attacking side there are some strong seniors who I hope lead the attack and come up with the goals during the season. The juniors bring in some good defensive options, and along with some enthusiastic and energetic sophomore and freshman players, the overall roster has a good mixture.”

Agnes Irwin
Head coach: Nick Spillane, seventh year.
Last year’s record: 14-4 overall, 10-2 Inter-Ac (second place), PAISAA semifinalist.
Key returnees:  senior striker Kristin Burnetta, senior midfielders Hannah Keating (All-Delco Player of the Year) and Emily Fryer, junior midfielder Annie McConnon, junior goalkeeper Kendall Shein, senior defenders Kate White and Claire Micheletti.
Others to watch: sophomore forward Maria Pansini, junior forward Lydia Bartosh, eighth grader forward Natalie Pansini, freshman midfielder Grace Bartosh.
Lost to graduation: defender Caitie Looby, forward Nicole Paradis, defender Lauren Spinelli.
Outlook: Agnes Irwin celebrated one of the most successful seasons in program history in 2014, finishing second in the Inter-Ac and reaching the semi-finals in the PAISAA Tournament.  The team defeated rival Episcopal twice in Inter-Ac play, including a dramatic 2-1 overtime victory on AIS/EA day. Claire Micheletti returns to anchor the back line and Kristin Burnetta will once again handle things on the attacking end. Emily Fryer, Kate White, and Sarah Platt complete the core group of student athletes that has led the renaissance of the AIS soccer program over the last three seasons.  This experienced group will be seeking their elusive first Inter-Ac and PAISAA titles. Senior striker Kristin Burnetta holds the career scoring record for Agnes Irwin. She enters her senior season with 58 career goals.
Spillane said, “In 2013 and 2014 we came close to bringing back some silverware to AIS, but fell just short. The aim for 2015 is to get over the hump. This year’s team is led by our experienced senior class and the experience and growth shown by the sophomore and junior class over the past few years compliments the class really well. We are also excited by the new faces on our roster.”

Archbishop Carroll
Head coach: Frank Olszewski, second year.
Last year’s record: 5-8-1 overall, 5-5-1 Catholic League.
Key returnees: senior forward Juliet Rossetti, senior defender Mandi Rafanello, junior defender Morgan Rake, junior midfielder Bella Sorrentino.
Others to watch: sophomore midfielder/goalie Claire Boylan, sophomore midfielder/goalie Grace Gallagher, freshman forward Paige Mastripolito.
Lost to graduation: goalie Alex Varrichio, forwards Jillian Foster and Jenn Friel.
Outlook: Olszewski, who sees the Patriots chief strengths as strong senior leadership and athletic goalkeepers, said, “Our program has grown to two full JV teams and a full varsity program. Our staff coaches, Larissa Nysch (Stony Brook University) and Brianna Thompson (Cabrini College) bring college playing experience to the table. Terrific administration and leadership enable the coaches to concentrate on keeping the program moving forward.”

Baldwin School
Head coach: Adrian Cox, first year.
Last year’s record: 5-14-1 overall, 2-10 InterAc.
Key returnees: senior midfielder/forward and co-captain Ellie Greenberg, senior defender and co-captain Hayden Ivey, senior goalkeeper Sam O’Keefe (was All-InterAc and All-Main Line last fall), junior defender/midfielder Kahlaa Cannady.
Others to watch: sophomore midfielder Olivia Dewitt, sophomore midfielder Marissa McGarrey, sophomore defender/midfielder Carly McIntosh, sophomore midfielder Rachel White.
Lost to graduation: defender Abby Andrews, forward Maddie Dawkins (playing for University of Pennsylvania), midfielder Krista Hinchman (playing for Loyola (Md.) University).
Outlook: Cox said, “It is a new era of Baldwin soccer in 2015. The program will be highly organized, committed, disciplined, hard-working and skilled. Over 40 players are in the program. There will be a lot of depth and competition for starting positions. Sam O’Keefe returns and will be relied on to lead the defense and make big saves. Ellie Greenberg has excellent pace and can create chances in attack. Hayden Ivey will miss the season with an ACL injury suffered during the spring lacrosse season, but will be a strong leader in practices and games on the sideline. Kahlaa Cannady is a versatile and steady presence on the field. It will be very important to play solid team defense, play quickly and possess the ball on offense and finish opportunities around the goal. There are some talented and intelligent sophomores (Olivia Dewitt, Marissa McGarrey, Carly McIntosh and Rachel White) who have the potential to be difference makers and will be counted on to impact the game. Be on the lookout for some young newcomers in the freshman class to gain experience and help the program become more competitive. We have a lot of work to do as a program to compete for an Inter-Ac League championship, if we put the work in, play smart, stay together, have confidence and believe anything can happen.”

Barrack Hebrew Academy
Head coach: Kim Gillio. 18th year.
Last year’s record: 6-7-2 overall. 5-2 Tri-County League; lost to Perkiomen School in TCISL championship final.
Key returnees: senior center mid Lindsay Chevlin, senior stopper Sarah Levin, senior midfielder Amanda Josephs, sophomore striker Talia Koltun-Fromm.
Others to watch: senior goalie Tali Glickman, freshman defender Yasmin Stein, freshman forward Shira Perloff, eighth-grader defender Mia Erlbaum.
Lost to graduation: forward Talia Prusky, defender Sarah Graub and six juniors due to the annual fall trip to Israel.
Outlook: Gillio said, “Our ball movement has been strong this preseason. Our attack has really improved, so the team is anxious to see how that translates during game play. The defensive end will be working with a new goalie this season, so they will need to be very aggressive, use each other’s strengths and work as a cohesive unit for a positive outcome. The team is hoping to win the Tri-County championship this year.”

Head coach: Meghan Brogan, fifth year.
Last year’s record: 14-6 overall, 10-1 Central League.
Key returnees: senior midfielder Alice Regan; senior forward Sammy Silverstein; junior forward Katelyn Perz; sophomore defender Hannah Morgan; sophomore midfielder Caitlyn Ellerbeck.
Others to watch: senior forward Monica Borzillo; senior goalie Julianna Horning; senior midfielder Melanie Haughey; sophomore forward Amelia Kinzle.
Lost to graduation: Aly Maneri (playing soccer at the University of Vermont); Laney Stenson (playing lacrosse at the University of Delaware); Maggie Stetson (playing lacrosse at Drexel University); Anna Tellefsen (playing soccer at Emory University); Grace Edgarton (playing soccer at Emory University); Paige Kozlowski (playing soccer at the University of Massachusetts); Emilie Studnick; Kylie Johnson; Miranda Miller; Anna Pedraza; Megan Nelson; Annie Guttman.
Outlook: Brogan said, “We have a nice blend of experience and youth. We have a strong core group of experienced leaders who will work to bring the eight underclassmen up to speed as quickly as possible. We look to improve from game to game and strive to be competitive in the Central League.”

Episcopal Academy
Head coach: Benjamin Wilson, first year.
Last year’s record: 7-10-2 overall, 5-5-2 Inter-Ac.
Key returnees: senior center midfielder Jess Shanahan, junior center midfielder Molly O’Brian, sophomore goalie Morgan Messner.
Others to watch: senior center midfielder Meghan Manley (co-captain), senior defender Claudia Becker (co-captain), sophomore goalie Hannah Moriarty.
Outlook: Wilson said, “Our strengths this year lie in our blend of veteran leadership in the form of our two co-captains, Meghan Manley, and Claudia Becker; our attacking mentality, led by senior center-midfielder, Jess Shanahan and junior center-midfielder, Molly O’Brian; and lastly, in our goalkeeping duo of sophomores, Morgan Messner, and Hannah Moriarty. As long as we avoid injuries and continue to grow as a cohesive unit, we should be formidable in the Inter-Ac conference.”

Friends’ Central
Head coach: Luke Nowell, first year.
Last year’s record: 9-7 overall, 5-3 Friends Schools League.
Key returnees: senior midfielder Anna Leone, senior midfielder Jesse Rubin, senior goalie Caroline Fakharzadeh.
Others to watch: junior midfielder Hayden Posencheg, sophomore defender Morgan Crowley, junior midfielder Lorna Macfarlane, sophomore midfielder Emily Lorry.
Lost to graduation: midfielder Abby Crowley (now playing soccer for Haverford College), defender Sophie Macfarlane, midfielder Lisa Bernstein.
Outlook: Nowell said, “Our team’s biggest strength is our technical ability – we are quite skilled through our entire roster and field a number of dynamic athletes. Our biggest keys this season will be to gel as a team quickly, and learn to play and defend as a unit.”

Head coach: Jeff Rhodes, sixth year.
Last year’s record: 5-10-2 overall, 2-9 Central League.
Key returnees: senior goalie Claire Coyle, senior forward Sammie Bigham, junior midfielder Ella Milani, junior defender Juliet Milani, junior defender Amanda Costa, junior midfielder Maya Cohen, junior midfielder Nadine Horneck, sophomore forward Morgan Rees.
Others to watch: freshman midfielder Sophie Edelblut, freshman midfielder Filippa Graneld, freshman defender Reilly Short, freshman midfielder Gabriela Mazzoni.
Lost to graduation: defenders Sarah dePillis and Annika Iyer.
Outlook: Rhodes said, “A strong group of freshmen added to a solid foundation will help us be competitive in the Central League.”

Haverford High
Head coach: Alexandra Hill, third year.
Last year’s record: 11-7 overall, 6-5 Central.
Key returnees: senior defenders Hannah Dodds and Josie Schultz, senior forward Adelaide Feigenbaum.
Others to watch: junior defender Briana Blair, sophomore midfielders Cece Peden and Sadie Gold.
Lost to graduation: Olivia Butera (Stevens Institute of Technology), Kayla Blair (Johns Hopkins).
Outlook: According to Hill, the Fords feature speed up top and both strength and experience in the back.

Lower Merion
Head coach: Kevin Ries, 13th year.
Last year’s record: 8-9 overall, 5-6 Central League.
Key returnees: senior defender Louisa Ebby, senior midfielder Abby Ritterband, junior forward Lizzy D’Alonzo, junior forward Julia Utkus, junior midfielder Cammie Tabb, sophomore midfielder Carmen Schuldt, senior goalie Mo McConnell, sophomore defender Kaitlin Vagnoni.
Others to watch: freshman forward Lilly Elman, sophomore forward Sophie Riverso, junior midfielder Lexie Sutton.
Lost to graduation: forward Tori Klevan (playing for University of Pennsylvania), defender Adina Harris, midfielder Marissa Shander.
Outlook: Ries lists the Aces’ chief strengths as defense and goalie, and said, “We have been working hard to get better as a team. The team needs to replace five starters lost to graduation. Our midfield needs to continue to progress, and play as a unit. The team is young and will need to be mature quickly to play a difficult Central league schedule. The team will need to replace 25 goals scored by Tori Klevan last fall.”

Merion Mercy Academy
Head coach: Chris Schreiner, first year.
Key returnees: senior defender Maeve Moran, senior forward Mikayla Tolen, junior midfielder/forward Michaela Coopinger, junior forward Coila Olivo, sophomore defender Mary Arena, sophomore defender Brooke Loonstyn.
Others to watch: sophomore midfielder/forward Lauren Andruszko, sophomore goalie Leah McCray, freshman midfielder/defender Payton Fox, freshman midfielder Michelle Giannini, freshman midfielder Teresa Hegarty, freshman midfielder/defender Claire McFadden.
Lost to graduation: Meg Rolfes, Meg Rogers, Alison Snarponis, Caroline Barton, Julia Brenner, Alysa Giosa, Kristen Konieczny, Lainey O’Hara, Lauren Uveges.
Outlook: Merion Mercy only returns two seniors from last year squad, so the underclassmen will have to carry the load with their skill and youthfulness. According to Schreiner, the strength of the squad is in the midfield with quality depth, and are strong defensively down the middle of the field. Schreiner said, “If the underclassmen can quickly adapt to the level of play and along the way pick up some timely goals, this squad could surprise a lot of other teams.”

Head coach: Mike Welsh, first year.
Last year’s record: 10-7-1 overall, 7-4-1 Central League.
Key returnees: senior defender Abby Lord, senior defender Fallon Quinn, senior midfielder Emily Games, senior forward Raquel Razavi, junior midfielder Allison Lanzone, junior midfielder Maura Holst, junior midfielder Nicole Massimino.
Others to watch: junior midfielder Julianne Puckette, sophomore forward Carolyn Eckstein.
Lost to graduation: forward Katie Junior, midfielders Reilly Masterson and Randi Purser.
Outlook: Welsh said, “The girls are very hungry for success after a disappointing finish last season. The key for us will be adapting to a new coach’s ideas and avoiding a lot of injuries.”

Head coach: Dakota McDonald, second year.
Last year’s record: 5-9-1 overall, 5-3 Friends Schools League.
Key returnees: senior forward/midfielder Hope Roehrs, sophomore defender Eliza Green, junior forward/midfielder Juelle Love, sophomore midfielder Cami Johnson, sophomore defender Lizzy Cotetta, sophomore midfielder/defender Bela Trachtenburg, senior goalie Maya Overton, senior midfielder/defender Emily Talluto, senior midfielder Christina Piaseki, senior midfielder Jenna Litner.
Others to watch: freshman forward Lucia Helmers, freshman goalie Grace Gorden, freshman midfielder/forward Elizabeth Talluto.
Lost to graduation: defenders Rachel Shapiro and Meredith Maguire.
Outlook: McDonald said, “We have not lost any girls who played last year. Our two seniors last year both were injured, leaving the team very young on the field. The girls are fit, which has given us plenty of time to work on soccer specific drills throughout preseason. The biggest key to our team’s success is last year the girls got a taste of what it feels like to compete in playoffs. I think they want to feel that again and take it to the next level. I am very excited for the upcoming season it has been a great first week of preseason.”

Villa Maria Academy
Head coach: Gary Christopher, ninth year.
Last year’s record: 8-9-2 overall, 6-5-1 AACA.
Key returnees: senior midfielder Jules Bradbury, senior defender Beth Eversman.
Others to watch: junior midfielder Tori Kent, junior defender Marissa DeGenova, junior defender Emily Gillen.
Lost to graduation: midfielder Katie Manta, midfielder Jill Hoban (playing for Manhattan College).
Outlook: Christopher said, “Our strengths include depth, leadership and experience. The keys to our success will be our ability to create quality scoring chances every game and to create a team attitude that embraces passionate defending at all times.”

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