Coach: Stefan Wismar
Assistant coach: Brian Barnes
Captains: Krianna Boelke, Grace Gassen, and Brittany Wilaby
Section: 6A – Benilde-St. Margaret’s, Bethany Academy, Breck, Delano, Holy Family, Mound-Westonka, Orono, Providence Academy, Rockford, Southwest Christian, Waconia, Watertown-Mayer, International School of Minnesota, and West Lutheran
2012 finish: The Crusader girls’ soccer team finished last season’s campaign with a 4-8-1 record defeating West Lutheran, ISM, Spectrum, and Prairie Seeds Academy. LHS tied against Bethany Academy.
In the first round of sections, Mayer Lutheran fell to Holy Family.
Key returnees: In the wake of just five graduating seniors last season (Allie Erdmann, Liz Laurent, Terrin Boozikee, Miriam Wilson, and Emily Johnson), many familiar faces will be on the field for LHS this year, including seniors Gassen, Boelke, Wilaby, and Brandee Borst. In addition, Hannah Zahrte, Belle Flucas, Brenna Rice, Audrey Morschen, and Paige Schneider all return, among others.
While there are holes to fill, Wismar said team members are eager and anxious for the season.
“The positions are open and the athletes are stepping up,” he said.
Key newcomers: With 28 girls out for the team this season, head coach Stefan Wismar said that most of the team is still young, with a lot of promise in the younger grades.
“You want to see growth in overall playing of soccer,” he said.
Wismar added that this season is likely to be another growing year for the Crusaders, but hopes the team will meet its goal of a winning season. With 12 new faces on the team, “half of our team is new,” Wilaby said.
Teams to beat: When the seniors were asked what teams were this season’s “teams to beat,” it seems that nearly every team on the Crusaders’ schedule should be on the watch.
“As many as we can,” Wilaby said.
“Everybody,” Gassen added.
On that list, Southwest Christian is at the top after a big loss in 2012. Rockford, Glencoe-Silver Lake, Bethany Academy, and St. John’s Prep round out the top five.
Goals: For the captains, two goals have plagued them for their varsity soccer careers, two goals they hope to meet this season: to have a winning season and to win the first playoff game.
With a few smaller injuries sidelining players already, a key to the season may be to keep the team healthy on top of battling through a tough schedule.
“We’ll be competitive,” Wismar said. “You always have the challenging teams on the schedule … but that challenges them to become better players.”
First game: The LHS girls’ soccer team will open the season at home on Aug. 23 against Delano.
Contact Melissa Marohl at firstname.lastname@example.org