Oak Harbor soccer | Fall prep preview

A strong and positive work ethic, according to coach Jeff Laiblin, should help the 2011 Oak Harbor soccer team build upon the strides the program made last fall.

Laiblin said his club is “very intelligent” and “learning quickly” as it prepares to open the season Tuesday, Sept. 6, with Shorecrest at Shoreline Stadium at 7:30 p.m.

Oak Harbor opens at home Sept. 13 at 7:30 with Glacier Peak.

The Wildcats will be young with only two returning senior letter winners, Jessica Bruns and Maura McKole. Junior lettermen McKenzie Schneider, Jember Jansen and Sarah Young also return along with sophomores Chelsea Atkinson and Annie Leete.

Laiblin said, “I will be expecting a lot from all of my returners. With half of the team being new to the varsity level, I will be needing their experience.”

He said senior Morgan Murphy, juniors Megan Duhrkopf and Anne TePaske, and sophomore Faith Franssen saw varsity action in 2010 and should play bigger roles this year.

Juniors Dahnyelle Counts and Lauren Seabolt; sophomores Hannah Vongrey, Cassidy Gurrich, Maddie Ching and Kyndra Sherman; and freshman Nalani Gabbert are other players who could see varsity action.

Laiblin said, “We saw 50 young ladies try out this year, the largest number in years. This includes 14 talented freshmen that made one of our two teams. We are excited to see how this young blood mixes with our gifted returners now and into the future.”

He added that he expects the Wildcats, who were 2-14 last year, to be “competitive against all opponents in league this year.” He added, “Ending our post-season drought is a strong possibility.”

Glacier Peak, Everett and Shorewood are the preseason favorites in Wesco, according to Laiblin.

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