Women’s soccer kicks around without their five top scorers in ’11

by Olu Rotibi

This upcoming season the Simpson women’s soccer team plan to improve from last year’s record of 13-6-2 and a second round advancement in the IIAC Tournament.

The Storm return five starters including senior defender Kara Lovik, who earned second team all-league honors last year. Chelsea Winegard received honorable mention from the coaches each of the past two seasons, while senior defensive midfielder Susan Leslie received honorable mention as well.

Winegard looks forward to this upcoming season which holds high promise from a successful season last year.

“We hope to be in the top three in our conference this season,” Winegard said. “One of our biggest goals is to beat Dubuque. We’ve struggled to beat them in the past so we’re looking to work together as a team and defeat them.”

Coach Ryan Sander looks to rebuild this season, which saw his team lose four of their top five scorers to graduation. Although the Storm has lost a significant amount of their offense, defense should play an essential role in their season this year.

“We lost quite a bit from last year and we have a little bit of rebuilding to do,” Sander said. “We brought in a solid freshmen class to add to a very good senior class which will help us during the course of this season.”

Experience and hard work will inevitably play a role in the Storm improving from last year and this year’s team believes they have the intangibles to do so.

“We’re a lot more mentally ready this year than last year,” Winegard said. “We’ve had a lot of freshmen willing to work harder, so as long as we work together as a team we will be successful.”

Simpson has the privilege of opening their season with five straight home games, and split the first two over the weekend with a 3-2 loss over Carleton and a 1-0 win on Sunday against Bethel.

Their home stand continues Wednesday with a 7:30 p.m. start against Grinnell College.