By: Lee Ramsey
It’s fairly obvious as to why the Seymour Lady Eagle soccer team won the IMAC regular season championship. Besides good coaching, eight Lady Eagles made the 2-AAA All IMAC District Team. They consisted of 5 seniors and 3 sophomores.
The seniors were Shelby Clark, defense, Kristie Bridges, midfield, Ashley Solomon, defense, Kelsey Hurst, forward and Lauren Aucoin, midfield. Sophomores were Erin Thomas, defense, Courtney Dyer, forward and Sarah Brewer forward.
Another honor went to Seymour Coach Drew Payne as he received the ‘IMAC Coach of the Year Award.’
Lauren (“Lo”) Aucoin (senior) was team head captain and was picked ‘IMAC Player of the Year’. Aucoin played center midfield which is considered by most as the most dynamic position in soccer.
Most coaches put players there who possess both offensive and defensive strengths.
“Lo played this position all 4 years and played it well,” Head Coach Drew Payne said. “The one thing I’m always amazed about, watching her play is that she’s normally the smallest center midfielder on the field, but you would never know it.
“It’s incredible how many 50/50 balls she wins against players who are bigger than her. She plays with a great deal of heart and has a motor that never quits. Aucoin scored 4 goals and had 7 assists.”
Kelsey Hurst (senior) played forward but also played a lot of different positions throughout her career.
“She played keeper for the first half of the season and played it well,” Payne said.
Hurst then moved back to forward after the usual keeper recovered from injuries.
“She ended up becoming an important part of our attack and did a great job both scoring goals and providing assists,” Payne said.
Hurst scored 6 goals and has 5 assists.
Kristie Bridges (senior) midfielder, is an all-round player and ‘jack-of-all-trades’, according to Coach Payne who has played every position except keeper.
“She’s one of those players that will do whatever she needs to for the team,” said Payne.
Bridges made 7 assists.
Shelby Clark (senior) was a defensive player who played soccer for the first time this season on the high school team. Even though she hadn’t played in years, her technical skills were still very good, according to Payne.
“She used her natural raw talent, along with incredible work ethic and stamina to help her become one of the better defenders in the district,” he said.
Ashley Solomon, (senior) played defense. She struggled early in the season with a thigh injury but recovered to have a great impact on the team, according to Payne.
“Ashley possessed very good technical skills and a strong knowledge of the game,” he said. “Her best attribute was her work ethic. She has improved each year.”
Solomon had 1 assist.
Erin Thomas (sophomore) played defense and was the Lady Eagle’s sweeper.
“She had an outstanding season,” said Payne. “The position she plays requires great field vision, awareness, anticipation and leadership. Erin possesses all these and more.”
Thomas was also voted one of the assistant team captains. She had 1 assist.
Courtney Dyer (sophomore) played forward and had a very strong season. With 17 goals, she was the second highest scorer on the team and also the district. She also led the team in assists with 9.
“Courtney’s best attribute is her speed. She is one of those players who the team relies on to score goals,” said Payne. “Every player has a role and Courtney’s is to put up points in the form of goals and assists and she did it very well.”
Last but certainly not least, Sarah Brewer, (sophomore) forward had an outstanding season. She led the team and the district in goals with 19 and 6 assists. Brewer was also named ‘IMAC Forward of the Year’.
“She had a good freshman year and even better this season,” said Payne. “She also matured and became mentally stronger.”
Coach Payne went on to talk about the Lady Eagle seniors. “The seniors have been a joy to coach and I will definitely miss them.”
The 2011 Lady Eagle soccer team is one for the history books.
Eight Lady Eagles Selected ALL-IMAC
By: Lee Ramsey