CHESTER, Vt. – Vermont Division III soccer has strong teams year after year. Climbing the ranks is not at all easy. One school, which features a team knocking at the door most autumns, is the Green Mountain Girls Soccer team. Last fall the Chieftains finished 16-3 bowing in the semi-finals to Stowe 2-0. Much of the same cast returns and they are off to a 4-0 start and have their hand raised to knock on the door again.
The team has shown plenty of offense in the early going. The team opened the season with a 10-0 thumping of Mount Saint Joseph with their high-powered offense scoring early and often. Then they moved on to the annual Black River Invitational where they would eventually defeat the hosts in the title encounter 10-0.
Junior striker Erin Otis, senior striker Avery Prescott, senior outside midfielder Lexi White, and junior midfield defender Paige Karl all scored two goals in that contest and were joined finding the net in the opener by senior outside midfielder Sierra Kehoe, sophomore reserve striker Micah White, freshman striker Belle White, sophomore reserve outside midfielder Maizy White, and junior reserve midfield defender Hannah Buffum. Sophomore goaltender Kamryn Ravlin had the shutout in goal.
Carolynn Hamilton’s team faced their biggest challenge to date in the opening round of the Black River Invitational where they defeated an extremely tough Proctor team 2-1. In reality, this match-up was the title contest. Hamilton said, “We have an extremely hard working team, who have worked to get in good shape and we were clearly in better shape than they were and that was the difference. This team knows how important it is to be in good shape and they have some big goals in mind this season.”
Karl put away all the tension from the well-played Proctor contest when she scored the game winner with 34 seconds to play. Prescott had an earlier tally and things were knotted 1-1 when Karl put the ball in the net. Hamilton credited junior Rachel Guerra and junior Brigid Karl inside defenders with a strong game as a key to the victory and pointed out the play this season of junior Anne Lawson, and senior Noelle Gignoux as outside defenders as important, as well as the play of sophomore defensive midfielder Maddie Wilson.
Additional Chietain reserves include junior outside defender Reilly Merrill, junior striker Emily Barr, sophomore midfielder Alyssa Ripley, and sophomore defender Zoe Svec. Additional freshmen on the roster include defenders Tierney O’Brien and Mary Cameron. The back-up goalies are Clara Narterano and Buffum. Exchange student Anja Mykhaylyuk completes the roster.
The Chieftains most recent win was 4-1 over Twin Valley. Hamilton felt the impact of a third game in a week left her team, “slow and tired and we didn’t have a very good game.” Paige Karl and Otis had two goals each to give the attack enough to claim victory. The Chieftains have more challenges ahead this week. They were facing Windsor at home as this paper was printing and then they travel to Otter Valley for a Saturday morning game at 10 a.m.