The ultimate goal

Kyla Johnson, Sports Writer

Within the halls of Xavier High School, the trophy case contains ten Girls’ Soccer State Championship trophies. As the 2022 season approaches, this year’s team is looking for number 11. The girls’ last state championship was in 2019. The 2020 season was canceled due to COVID-19 and the 2021 season ended with a fall to Waverly-Shellrock in the state tournament quarter final game. This year’s team is looking for a better outcome at the tournament with a different team after losing multiple seniors. Senior Ellie Koechner is more than ready to fill the shoes of leadership for her team. “I am taking my knowledge from the past years on varsity and helping the underclassmen as much as I can with whatever they need,” Koechner said. Although Koechner is ready to lead underclassmen, she also said how excited she is for the learning and growing steps into her leadership role. Koechner is not the only one excited to see the team come together. Girl’s Soccer Head Coach Chris Higgins is excited to see his returning players step up as leaders and the effect that they will have on the team. “The chemistry of the returners is infectious. There is a real feeling that we are all in this together. We have been through the highs of winning a state championship to the lows of our season being canceled, with everything else in-between. There has been an appetite to train because the group knows they have a point to prove this year,” Coach Higgins said. Another senior excited for the season and her leadership role is Aly Wiesenhofer. Wiesenhofer says that she feels the team has unfinished business from last year and that gives her extra drive for success this season. “I would have to say [I am excited as a senior for] State season because everyone is having fun, but also putting in the hard work,” Wiesenhofer said. Both senior girls agree that a State Championship is a pretty common goal amongst the whole team. However, they still have personal goals going into their final season as a part of their high school team. “Having fun and taking it game by game is one of the biggest goals I have for the season this year,” Koechner said. The girls season began on Thursday, March 24 with a Jamboree at Kingston Stadium with seven other schools from the area. They have since competed in a scrimmage with Mount Vernon and had two regular season games. They will play Thursday, April 7 at Linn- Mar High School. The game will begin at 7:30 pm and will also be broadcasted on KCRG 9.2.