ADDISON COUNTY — This fall’s local high school girls’ soccer season proved to be productive for several scorers, and the one who enjoyed the best all-around season against the toughest competition was Mount Abraham senior Evy Jacobs, the 2012 Addison Independent Girls’ Soccer Player of the Year.
Jacobs’ scoring and playmaking helped spark Coach Dustin Corrigan’s Eagles to the top local record, 10-5-2, and a berth in the Division II semifinals. Three of her teammates join her on the 2012 Addison Independent Girls’ Soccer All-Star Team, including a second double-digit goal-scorer.
One team seemed to have the Eagles’ number: Co-coaches Dwight Irish and Peter Maneen’s Vergennes girls. Two of the young Commodores’ five wins came at the Eagles’ expense, and three Commodores earned spots on the Independent squad, one for the third time.
Coach Wendy Leeds’ improving Middlebury girls also won five times, a notable victory total because it represented a high-water mark for the MUHS program in about two decades. Two Tigers are recognized here, one for the second time.
Coach Dave Brown’s Otter Valley team also showed progress not reflected in its 4-9-2 record. The Otters showed a better quality of play and went 3-2-2 down the stretch. One senior scorer earned a berth on the Independent squad, as did a player who assisted many of those goals.
Selections were made based on observation, statistics and consultation with the coaches; as always, leadership and intangibles count. Congratulations to the following:
EVY JACOBS, MOUNT ABE SENIOR, PLAYER OF THE YEAR. Notes: Dangerous, skilled player who sparked the Eagles with 16 goals and 5 assists against challenging Lake Division competition … Scored regularly despite being the focus of opposing defenses all season and often being singled out for individual marking … Adept ballhandler with a powerful shot … Strong, physical player who is hard to knock off the ball … Smart passer who set up chances for her teammates … Three-time Independent all-star.
Corrigan’s quotes: “She’s just a very good player. She’s well-polished all-around … When she’s within shooting distance for us, she’s dangerous … She is easily one of the best offensive players in the state this year … She’s tenacious, physically strong, gifted on the dribble, and can score longer range shots with either foot … She also has a remarkable ability to play big passes that open the game up and get her teammates into attacking spaces.”
LAUREN NESSHOEVER, OV SENIOR. Notes: Talented four-year varsity player for OV who scored a local-high 17 goals and assisted 10 more, figuring in 64 percent of the team’s offense … Finished her career with a program-record 42 goals and 17 assists and led OV in scoring for three straight seasons … Fast, technical player with the ability to finish plays and set up her teammates … Three-time Independent all-star.
Brown’s quotes: “Lauren is a great forward with tremendous speed both with ball and without … She has an uncanny ability to find the net … She has exceptional footwork … As a captain this year she showed tremendous leadership … Lauren is an extremely dangerous player. When Lauren steps on the field the other team takes notice and makes sure she is well marked.”
MEGHAN LIVINGSTON, MOUNT ABE JUNIOR. Notes: Fast, tireless wing who blossomed into a scorer this season with 12 goals and three assists … Makes the most of her speed and skill with constant hustle and effort … Fights to repossess the ball if it is lost and moves well off the ball.
Corrigan’s quotes: Meghan grew considerably in the forward position this year … She’s very fit, quick, technical, and skilled at pushing the ball by defenders and running past … She makes very intelligent runs to free herself away from defenders … She causes opposing teams problems with her pace … She also shows great tenacity all over the field.”
RUBY DOMBEK, VUHS JUNIOR. Notes: After two years as a high-scoring striker, willingly moved back to midfield this season to help shore up the a young Commodore team there … Still managed to pop in four goals, and led VUHS with six assists, figuring in 10 of the team’s 11 goals … Skilled player with good field vision, and a fast and determined athlete who defended well … Three-time Independent all-star.
Irish’s quotes: “She’s a tireless, selfless player … She was our most skilled player. When we put her in the middle, good things happened for us … Her skill made a difference for us … She knows how to play … Up top she has that knack for scoring goals. Next year we hope to see more of her true strength, which is putting the ball in the back of the net.”
M.K. CHARNLEY, MOUNT ABE JUNIOR. Notes: Three-year varsity team member who showed both technical ability and a physical presence at central midfield … Scored five goals, several on well-struck direct kicks, and set up five scores … Two-way player who created chances for teammates, won battles for the ball, and disrupted opponents’ transition.
Corrigan’s quotes: “M.K. is a central midfield technician with loads of flair and tenacity … She’s apt at playing passes … She also defends with determination and is a great ball-winner in the midfield … On the dribble she has the ability to beat opposing players … She’s a corner kick and direct free kick specialist. Her crosses on corners are always dangerous.”
LYDIA ALLEN, MUHS SENIOR. Notes: Speedy, versatile midfielder with a big foot … Led MUHS with five goals, mostly long-range shots that included a 25-yard game-winning overtime blast vs. VUHS … Converted defender who put those skills to good use harassing opponents at midfield … Used her skills and leadership to help the Tigers improve their possession and transition game.
Leeds’ quotes: “She’s got a great work ethic … She’s got a quiet lead-by-example style ... She was our go-to for any direct kick … She’s got really good speed with the ball … She exploded out of midfield into the attacking third … I was dreaming about getting her into the midfield, and was psyched I was able to do that this year, and she delivered.”
SAVANNAH LYNCH, OV JUNIOR. Notes: Playmaking central midfielder who led all area midfielders and tied for the lead among all local players with 11 assists … Also stepped into the attack and scored three times … Displayed excellent field vision and the skills to deliver the balls to the right place … Determined defender.
Brown’s quotes: Savannah is a great midfielder who has a great ability to defend in the harshest of circumstances and quickly transition the ball back to offense … She has a great touch on the ball … She is able to distribute to both sides of the field wonderfully.”
HARLIE VINCENT, MOUNT ABE JUNIOR. Notes: Reliable, skilled central defender who played a key role as the Eagles allowed only 1.3 goals per game this fall … Played well positionally in the team concept and individually against opposing players … Composed player whose communication helped her teammates.
Corrigan’s quotes: “Harlie was the defensive player this year that we could not afford to have off the field … She has all the attributes you look for in a central defender … She positions herself well to give us cover and depth when needed … She’s tenacious, fast, strong, tough one-v-one, good in the air, poised on the ball, and can clear the ball very effectively when needed.”
SOPHIA ABDUL-SATER, MUHS JUNIOR. Notes: Fast, physical central defender who played well one-on-one and within the MUHS team defense … Has a strong leg and took most of the free kicks in the defensive end, and picked up an assist on one … Improved her play in the air and her knowledge of when to challenge for the ball and when to be patient.
Leeds’ quotes: “She’s great back there in that sweeper spot ... She understood contain concepts … She’s great on the restarts … I never worried with her back there … She’s composed under pressure. She’s pretty quick. Not too many people could get by her, and when they did, she often caught them.”
PHOEBE PLANK, VUHS JUNIOR. Notes: Moved to sweeper this fall for the first time and anchored a back line that also started three freshmen with her poise and steady play … Reliable individual defender who quickly picked up the positional responsibilities of central play and helped direct her teammates … Made good decisions with the ball and showed a sure foot … Voted co-MVP by her teammates.
Irish’s quotes: “Her No. 1 is her composure. That was her strength ... She really had good instincts back there. She knows her whens, when to tackle, when to wait … She did a good job organizing the defense and settling us down … She’s not flashy, but she is skilled … Decision-making is another thing that she is quite good at back there.”
CAITLIN CHAPUT, VUHS SENIOR. Notes: Strong, athletic goalie with good reflexes and hands … While in net (she missed some time due to injury) she allowed 20 goals while being credited with 100 stops, an 83 percent rate … Improved across the board in key skills: coming out to snare balls in traffic, punting and distributing, and decision-making … Captain and team leader.
Irish’s quotes: “It carried over from last year. She came in more confident, and she just came in better. She was better in the area, and she was better with the tough saves this year ... To me she became a solid goalkeeper … She would catch the ball in big traffic this year … She just went up and grabbed it. She had Spider-Man hands in traffic … She’s a great kid, no question.”
Andy Kirkaldy may be reached at email@example.com.