Buchholz girls soccer serious about success
Published: Thursday, January 8, 2009 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Friday, January 9, 2009 at 11:57 p.m.
There is a seriousness about the Buchholz girls soccer team and what they have accomplished as a program.
The Bobcats are tied for second in the state for most regional tournament appearances with 22, having advanced to the postseason in each of the last nine years. Buchholz has also lost just one match to a city school in the last 12 years.
This season Buchholz is 15-1-1, which includes winning its division title at the Capital City Classic and at last weekend’s Bobcat Invitational, which it hosted.
The Bobcats will also be shooting for their third straight district title when the District 1-6A tournament starts on Jan. 20th.
But the goal this season for coach Ron Messick’s club is to reach the Class 6A state semifinals. If the Bobcats achieve that feat, which they last accomplished in 2000 (Class 3A state runners-up), it will be a hair-raising experience which will also add some comic relief.
“I told them if we went to the final four I would get a mohawk,” Messick said. “It was said kind of jokingly. The little mantra I wanted them to use is, ‘do whatever it takes.’ If it takes me to get a mohawk, then I’ll do it.”
Messick admits to trying to motivate his team in different ways and this stunt has piqued his players’ interest.
“It (coach getting a mohawk) motivates me. I would just love to see him with a mohawk,” said senior midfielder Tori Marshall. “Even though we are serious, at the same time it is a lot of fun to play together.”
Sophomore forward Havannah Solaun leads the Bobcats with 17 goals, while sophomore midfielder Alex Stanojev is tops on the squad with 12 assists. Messick also said his goalkeeping tandem of junior Brittany Hardin and senior L.A. Zdziarski has been real good.
“Everyone knows each other so well, we have known each other for a long time,” said senior forward Kallie Mitchner. “The team just plays really well together, I think everyone kind of feeds off of each other.”
Described as a close-knit group, the Bobcats have had to overcome injuries to three starters, (Lauren Hyden, Chrissy Allen and most recently Jessika Marshall).
Buchholz, with just five seniors on its roster, has not skipped a beat.
“I would say we are not a veteran group by grade but we’re a veteran group by experience and the fact that they do like each other, that plays a big part of it,” said Messick. “I think they know they are all part of the team whether they are on the field at the moment or not. They know at any second they could be the one that is going to have to be the deciding factor.”
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