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SAGINAW VALLEY LEAGUE GIRLS SOCCER TEAM CAPSULES 2024



BY DAN STICKRADT

Communications Specialist | Web And Content Editor | Director of News |

Social Media Director | Interns and Freelance Coordinator

PH: (248) 884-1051

TW: @LocalSportsFans @MiSoccerNetwork



(Michigan Soccer Network Communications Specialist / Web and Content Editor / Director of News Dan Stickradt is compiling team capsules for over 460 girls soccer programs statewide.

Competing Teams – Bay City Central, Bay City Western, Davison, Flint Carman-Ainsworth, Flint Powers Catholic, Lapeer, Midland, Midland Dow, Mt. Pleasant, Saginaw Heritage, Saginaw United

 

Roster Call

The Michigan Soccer Network is collecting varsity girls soccer rosters for over 460 schools state-wide. Copies can be emailed to stickradt@michigansoccernetwork.com.

 

SCHOOL: Bay City Central

HEAD COACH: Brandon Hopkins

2023 OVERALL AND LEAGUE RECORD/ FINISH:  8-12-0, 3-8-0 SVL (eighth, nine points)

2023 STATE TOURNAMENT RESULTS: Lost in D-1 district semifinals to Midland (8-0)

RETURNING STARTERS: Ava Garcia, jr. M; Delaney Hopkins, jr. M; Abby Keenan, sr. D

OTHER KEY RETURNEES: No list submitted.

KEY NEWCOMERS: No list submitted.

REMAINING ROSTER: No list submitted.

NOTABLES/OUTLOOK/COACH’S QUOTE: Last season’s team registered eight wins, a vast improvement from previous years and most since 2011. The school is starting to benefit from gaining more kids that play some level of club soccer. Will it be enough to lift the Wolves up a few rungs in the Saginaw Valley League standings this year or in the future.

 

SCHOOL: Bay City Western

HEAD COACH: Jeff Swartz, second season

2023 OVERALL AND LEAGUE RECORD/ FINISH: 14-5-2, 5-4-2 SVL (seventh, 17 points)

2023 STATE TOURNAMENT RESULTS: Def. Bay City John Glenn (5-0); def. Mt. Pleasant (2-1, 2OT, SO, district finals); lost in D-2 regional semifinals to Spring Lake (2-1)

RETURNING STARTERS: Audrey Kudinger, soph. M/F; Brooke Swartz, sr. M (All-League Second Team); Sophie Kraut, sr. D; Kaylee O’Hara, sr. G; Mallory Harned, sr. D; Maddy Uhelski, sr. M/F; Mia Warner, sr. G  

OTHER KEY RETURNEES: Aliyah Kuizenga, sr. M; Peyton Connelly, jr. D

KEY NEWCOMERS: No names submitted.

NOTABLES/OUTLOOK/COACH’S QUOTE: Western captured its third district title in program history, joining the 2016 and 2019 squads, and had one of their best overall years in school history. There is a quality group back that hopes to continue the ascend up the Saginaw Valley League charts, as the league appears again to be deeper than in previous time periods.


SCHOOL: Davison

HEAD COACH: Rob Nuckolls

2023 OVERALL AND LEAGUE RECORD/ FINISH: 7-7-5, 5-3-3 SVL (sixth, 18 points)

2023 STATE TOURNAMENT RESULTS: Lost in D-1 pre-districts to Flushing (1-0)

RETURNING STARTERS: Nia Smith, sr. D/F (All-League First Team); Kylie Worthing, soph. F (All-League Second Team)

OTHER KEY RETURNEES: No list submitted.

KEY NEWCOMERS: No list submitted.

REMAINING ROSTER: No list submitted.

NOTABLES/OUTLOOK/COACH’S QUOTE: The Cardinals outscored the opposition 51-23 last season with five shutouts, although 26 of those goals came against two schools. Two years ago Davison had one of its best teams, as the Cardinals finished second in the SVL behind Midland Dow and had a rare win over Grand Blanc in the pre-district contest before bowing out in the district semifinals. Last year Davison suffered a first-round exit. The Cardinals do bring back a pair of players that earned some type of All-League recognition and hope to build around those players as they battle to stay in the top half of the league. Davison was sixth in the SVL last season. This year the Cardinals should have two of the top players in the league in Nia Smith and Kylie Worthing.


SCHOOL: Flint Carman-Ainsworth

HEAD COACH: Jessica Saunders

2023 OVERALL AND LEAGUE RECORD / FINISH: 0-18-0, 0-10-0 SVL (tied-10th, no points)

2023 STATE TOURNAMENT RESULTS: Lost in D-2 pre-districts to Flint Kearsley (10-1)

RETURNING STARTERS: No names submitted.

OTHER KEY RETURNEES: No names submitted.

KEY NEWCOMERS: No names submitted.

NOTABLES/OUTLOOK/COACH’S QUOTE: Much like league foe Saginaw United (formally Saginaw and Saginaw Arthur Hill) and many other city schools in Michigan such as Wayne Memorial, Ypsilanti Lincoln, Detroit Renaissance, Muskegon, Wyoming, Oak Park, Battle Creek Central, Lansing Eastern, Lansing Sexton and others, the Cavaliers do not benefit from a roster full of high-level club players on their roster and the program has had a difficult time competing in soccer as opposed to other sports.

 

SCHOOL: Flint Powers Catholic

HEAD COACH: Art Moody

2023 OVERALL AND LEAGUE RECORD / FINISH: 17-5-2, 7-3-2 SVL (third, 23 points)

2023 STATE TOURNAMENT RESULTS: Def. Armada (9-0); def. Almont (8-0, district finals); def. Frankenmuth (8-1, regional semifinals); def. Warren Regina (2-0, regional finals); lost in D-3 state semifinals to Grosse Ile (2-1, 2OT, SO)

RETURNING STARTERS: Grace Cameron, sr. D (All-League First Team); Abby Jones, sr. D/M (All-League Second Team)

OTHER KEY RETURNEES:

KEY NEWCOMERS:

NOTABLES/OUTLOOK/COACH’S QUOTE:

 

SCHOOL: Grand Blanc

HEAD COACH: Greg Kehler

2023 OVERALL AND LEAGUE RECORD / FINISH:  17-5-2, 9-1-2 SVL (second, 29 points)

2023 STATE TOURNAMENT RESULTS: Def. Flushing (4-0); def. Clarkston (2-1, district finals); def. Brighton (1-0, regional semifinals); lost in D-1 regional finals to Northville (2-0)

RETURNING STARTERS: Kendall Croteau, sr. D (All-SVL Second Team, All-District, All-State Honorable Mention); Iyana Blake, jr. M

OTHER KEY RETURNEES: Taylor Lewis, sr. M; Kareena Raybuck, sr. D; Lauren Lynch, soph. D Ritika Patel, sr. M; Meela York, sr. F; Anna Weston, jr. F; Paige Bilbey, jr. G

KEY NEWCOMERS: Haylee Heise, fr. F (was playing with the Michigan Jaguars GA)

NOTABLES/OUTLOOK/COACH’S QUOTE: Grand Blanc had a large senior class and benefitted with some players coming over from ECNL and Girls Academy teams that made the bobcats stronger. Grand Blanc wound up second in the final SVL standings and went on to capture a Division 1 district crown before succumbing to fellow state power Northville in the regional finals. Although nine starters must be replaced, there is still ample talent waiting in the wings to keep the Bobcats in contention at least in the SVL. “It’s too early to tell. Have strong non-conference matches vs Troy Athens, Rochester Adams and Clarkston to name a few. Plus, our league is getting stronger every year which helps prepare us for the tournament. We hope to be challenging for the league title. I see more balance than ever in the SVL this coming year. Midland Dow will be the favorite I think, but Davison, (Flint) Powers, Midland and Bay

City Western could make for a fun season,” said coach Greg Kehler.


SCHOOL: Lapeer

HEAD COACH: Chad Kenny, first season

2023 OVERALL AND LEAGUE RECORD / FINISH: 7-10-1, 5-5-1 SVL (eighth, 16 points)

2023 STATE TOURNAMENT RESULTS: Lost in D-1 pre-districts to Oxford (4-3, 2OT, SO)

RETURNING STARTERS: Lilly Young, sr. G; Ramsey Kress, sr. D; Macy Tackabury, sr. D/F (All-League Second Team); Sephora Miller, sr. D; Christina Slieff, sr. F; Morgan Wilcox, soph. M; Rileigh, soph. F.

OTHER KEY RETURNEES: Erin King, soph. D; Maecyn Kress, soph. M/D

KEY NEWCOMERS: No names submitted.

NOTABLES/OUTLOOK/COACH’S QUOTE: Lapeer has a new coach in Chad Kenny, who inherits a roster that graduated just two players. Kenny coaches the Lapeer boys soccer team and was a former head or assistant coach at Lapeer East in the 1990s and 2000s. With an experienced group could Lapeer be a sleeper pick to finish high in the standings usually dominated by Midland, Midland Dow, Grand Blanc and Flint Powers Catholic?

 

SCHOOL: Midland

HEAD COACH: Rodrigo Barassi

2023 OVERALL AND LEAGUE RECORD / FINISH: 15-5-1, 7-3-1 SVL (tied-fourth, 22 points)

2023 STATE TOURNAMENT RESULTS: Def. Bay City Central (8-0); def. Midland Dow (2-1, 2OT, SO, district finals); lost in D-1 regional semifinals to Portage Central (1-0, 2OT, SO).

RETURNING STARTERS: Lizzy Striebel, jr. M (All-League Second Team); Theresa Wilk, jr. M (All-League Second Team); Kennedy Thurlow, sr. M; Sydney Fulcher, jr. F; Niobe Marchalant, jr. G; Ellary Laverty, jr. F/D; Morgan Ludwig, jr. D/F; Marianna Etienne, sr. D; Paige Freed, sr. D

OTHER KEY RETURNEES: Brianna Gilmore, sr. D; Ashley Sterling, jr. D; Alahna Beckett, jr. M/F; Claire Carpenter, jr. F; Ava Kontranowski, soph. M; Coco Hurtubise, sr. D; Madalynn Emeott, sr. M; Kennedy Eyre, sr. M

KEY NEWCOMERS: Reagan Vokal, soph. M/F; Jensyn Ardouin, soph. M

NOTABLES/OUTLOOK/COACH’S QUOTE: The Chemics only graduated three players and with most of the roster intact from last year, figure to be a factor in the SVL race and perhaps even a district crown. Midland dropped down to Division 2 enrollment-wise this school year and could become a top15 team there with its talented lineup and experience. The Chemics reached the regional semifinals last season in D-1.


SCHOOL: Midland Dow

HEAD COACH: Spencer Sandow

2023 OVERALL AND LEAGUE RECORD / FINISH: 14-4-4, 9-0-2 SVL (first, 29 points)

2023 STATE TOURNAMENT RESULTS:  Def. Traverse City West (2-1); def. Traverse City Central (6-2); lost in D-1 district finals to Midland (2-1, 2OT, SO)

RETURNING STARTERS: Sarah Sharpe, sr. D; Melanie Kolnitys, soph. F (All-SVL First Team, All-District); Sydney Lambert, sr. D/M/F (All-SVL Honorable Mention, All-District); Ivy Beall, jr. M

OTHER KEY RETURNEES: Carley Gatrell, sr. D/F; Mallory Brandt, soph. M; Riley Schikorra, sr. M/F; Rachael Leuter, sr. M/F

KEY NEWCOMERS: Avery Lehman, sr. G; Lauren Schikorra, fr. M; Lauren Leuter, soph. F/M; Aubree Bills, fr. M; Jessica Neal, jr. D; Allison Stockton, fr. F; Kaitlyn Oikarinen, fr. D.

NOTABLES/OUTLOOK/COACH’S QUOTE: Dow spent time in the state rankings last season and went on to win the SVL title outright. The Chargers outscored the opposition 66-23 with 10 shutouts and were cruising along until being upset by rival Midland in the district finals in a game that reached a shootout. With a promising freshmen class gelling with eight returnees, Dow should again be a threat to contend for a league and district crown this season. “We are a younger team this season but I still think we have the potential to have a good season, we will be led by seven seniors who have been part of some really good teams at Dow so they know what it takes to be successful. We also have 4 freshmen who I all expect to contribute this season in a pretty big way. In between those two grades we have a good mix of first year players and returners from the past couple seasons. There might be some growing pains at the start, but I expect this team will compete towards the top of the league and make a run at a district championship. We have a challenging conference with good teams. Along with us I expect Grand Blanc to be near the top, the past three seasons have been Dow (two times) and Grand Blanc (one time) as the conference champions. I also expect Bay City Western, Midland High and Flint Powers (Catholic) to also competing at the very top of the league. Playing 11 conference games is a grind and at the end of the conference season I think the champion is truly deserving of the title,” said coach Spencer Sandow.


SCHOOL: Mt. Pleasant

HEAD COACH: David Acles

2023 OVERALL AND LEAGUE RECOR D/ FINISH: 13-7-1, 7-3-1 SVL (tied-fourth, 22 points)

2023 STATE TOURNAMENT RESULTS: Def. Petoskey (1-0); def. Cadillac (2-0); lost in D-2 district finals to Bay City Western (2-1, 2OT, SO)

RETURNING STARTERS:  Grace Mease, sr. F/M (All-League Second Team)

OTHER KEY RETURNEES: Avery Benjamin, sr. D; Macy Ervin, sr. D; Emily Hartman, sr. M; Lauren Hartman, sr. D/M; Jordan Huenemann, sr. M/F; Cassiday Vanas, sr. D

KEY NEWCOMERS: Addie Trost, jr. M/F; Audrey Lange, soph. M; Bella Colores, jr. M/F; Kylie Hutchins, soph. D; Mattie Stanton, fr. G

REMAINING ROSTER: No list submitted.

NOTABLES/OUTLOOK/COACH’S QUOTE: The Oilers were one of the most improved squads last year, finishing tied for fourth place in the SVL. Mt. Pleasant was quite the offensive juggernaut last year, outscoring the opposition 84-33 with eight shutouts but must replace several key players from that vaunted attack. This would be the time for younger players to step in and step up as graduation losses created ample opportunity to shine.

 

SCHOOL: Saginaw Heritage

HEAD COACH: Jesse Maldonado

2023 OVERALL AND LEAGUE RECORD / FINISH: 7-13-1, 2-8-1 SVL (ninth, seven points)

2023 STATE TOURNAMENT RESULTS: Lost in D-1 pre-districts to Traverse City Central (2-1)

RETURNING STARTERS: Sophia Kleinebreil, soph. CB (All-League First Team)

OTHER KEY RETURNEES: No list submitted.

KEY NEWCOMERS: No list submitted.

REMAINING ROSTER: No list submitted.

NOTABLES/OUTLOOK/COACH’S QUOTE: A once proud and respectable program, the Hawks did win a Division 1 state championship back in 2002 under George Carty some 22 years ago. Heritage also made some other deep runs back in the 1990s and 2000s but has not accomplished much in recent years. The program started slow last season and were outscored 57-42 overall last season. The Hawks made a late push by going 6-2-1 in their final nine games in 2023 with a 34-10 scoring edge and all five team shutouts in that stretch. How will Heritage stack up in 2024 remains to be seen, as the league appears to be much deeper the last 2-3 years as opposed to previous time periods.


SCHOOL: Saginaw United

HEAD COACH: Robert Clark

2023 OVERALL AND LEAGUE RECORD / FINISH: 1-10-0, 0-10-0 SVL (tied-10th, no points)

2023 STATE TOURNAMENT RESULTS: Withdrew from MHSAA Division 1 postseason and forfeited first round contest.

RETURNING STARTERS: No names submitted.

OTHER KEY RETURNEES: No names submitted.

KEY NEWCOMERS: No names submitted.

NOTABLES/OUTLOOK/COACH’S QUOTE: Saginaw United, the combined team for Saginaw and Saginaw Arthur Hill, will be a new high school under the Saginaw United Phoenix next school year. Like many other city schools in Michigan, such as Flint Carman-Ainsworth, Flint Southwestern, Detroit Renaissance, Wyoming, Muskegon, Ypsilanti Lincoln, Wayne Memorial, Oak Park and others, these schools are competitive in certain sports but do not benefit from very many club soccer players competing on their team as opposed to some of the other schools in the Saginaw Valley League and across the state. United keeps fielding teams but did not post a conference victory last season.



 




2023 ALL-SAGINAW VALLEY LEAGUE GIRLS SOCCER TEAM

 

FIRST TEAM

Grace Kuenker, Bay City Western sr. D

Nia Smith, Davison jr. D/F

Alaina Schalk, Midland Dow sr. F

Lindsay Hart, Midland Dow sr. M

Melanie Kolnitys, Midland Dow fr. F

Libby Avery, Midland Dow sr. OB

Kate Childers, Grand Blanc sr. M

Anna Sabo, Grand Blanc sr. M

Addison Thomas, Grand Blanc sr. M

Sophia Kleinebreil, Saginaw Heritage fr. CB

Anna Megie, Lapeer sr. M/F

Ainsley Newcomb, Midland sr. F

Grace Sczepanski, Midland sr. F/M

Izzy Struble, Mount Pleasant sr. F/M

Grace Cameron, Flint Powers Catholic jr. D

Natalie Vance, Flint Powers Catholic sr. M

PLAYER OF THE YEAR

Kate Childers, Grand Blanc sr. M

COACH OF THE YEAR

Spencer Sandow, Midland Dow

 

SECOND TEAM

Ava Garcia, Bay City Central soph. M

Brooke Swartz, Bay City Western jr. M

Kylie Worthing, Davison fr. F

Piper Beall, Midland Dow sr. CB

Jessica Erickson, Midland Dow sr. G

Kendell Croteau, Grand Blanc jr. D

Adrina James, Grand Blanc sr. F

Isabella Duby, Saginaw Heritage soph. F

Macy Tackabury, Lapeer jr. CB/F

Lizzy Striebel, Midland soph. M

Maria Eagle, Midland sr. D

Theresa Wilk, Midland soph. M

Grace Mease, Mount Pleasant jr. F

Sophia Reilly, Mount Pleasant sr. F

Abby Jones, Flint Powers Catholic jr. D

Keilana Papathendore, Flint Powers Catholic sr. D


(MSN will compile a random sampling of game results from around the state each day. To send in results from high school varsity, club, amateur, pre-pro, semi-pro or professional soccer, email all pertinent details to Communications Specialist / Web and Content Editor / Director of News Dan Stickradt at stickradt@michigansoccernetwork.com.)


(Have a story suggestion for the Premier Media Group and the Michigan Soccer Network regarding club soccer, high school varsity, amateur soccer, collegiate soccer or professional soccer of teams or players with Michigan ties, contact Communications Specialist/Web and Content Editor/Director of News Dan Stickradt via email at stickradt@michigansoccernetwork.com, or call 248-884-1051. Dan Stickradt is a 31-year veteran of the Michigan Media circles and recently joined the staff full time in March of 2024. Want to schedule a broadcast game or live show, contact PMG/MSN Director of Broadcasting Jonathan Turner for availability and pricing at jonathan@michigansoccernetwork.com.) 








 

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