The Summit girls soccer team had a strong season in 2012-2013, finishing second in district competition and advancing to the postseason.
As the Lady Jaguars attempt to repeat on the level of success they enjoyed last season, they will have some seasoned players and eager newcomers to lead the way.
Coach Kirby Davis said that he has been impressed with what he has seen from his team early on this year and said that he is optimistic that Summit will once again be a strong team.
“I think I have six seniors and six freshmen that will kind of determine my team,” Davis said. “That's kind of exciting when you have that type of balance of older and younger players. I am excited. I think we will be at least as strong as we were last year.”
Davis said he has a couple of strong returning players from last year that he expects to be his team leaders in 2013-2014.
“Justine Abella and Alissa Larson both got district awards last year,” Davis said. “Justine was most valuable forward and Allison was most valuable midfielder. They should have good years.”
Davis said the objectives for this season are as much about developing character and playing the game the right way as they are about on field achievements.
“I feel like we have a pretty high standard at Summit, where year in and year out, we have a pretty successful program,” Davis said. “Our objective is to kind of continue that, and to act a certain way on and off the field and develop character and win with character.
“I always tell them that we are not going to win every game, but we are going to act a certain way and play a certain way and those are lessons they will remember long after the score of a game.”
The Summit girls finished 13-5-4 overall last season and finished 7-4-3 in district competition and lost to Stephenville in the bi-district round of the playoffs.
Davis said, in order to improve upon that type of success, his team will need a couple of things.
“We need to be better athletically,” Davis said. “That Stephenville team were such better athletes. They were faster and stronger. They weren't better soccer players, but they were better athletically, and we have to be better in that area.”
• On the boys side, the Jaguars were also a playoff team in 2012-2013, and lost to Stephenville in the bi-district round of the playoffs as well.
Summit lost a lot of its corps from last season with the graduation of goalkeeper MVP Erick Medina and co-utility MVP Chris Brown.
The Jags also lost all-district selections Logan Lowry, Nick Toliver and Ali Mohamed.
Going four rounds deep in the postseason each of the two seasons prior to last year does establish a strong pedigree for Summit, but whether or not the team still has what it takes to advance to the playoffs in 2013-2014 remains to be seen.
Coach David McDonald could not be reached for comment.