U-16 soccer girls headed for state

Published 12:00 am Monday, July 22, 2002

After being eliminated in the second round of the district tournament the last two years, the Albert Lea Elks U-16 girls’ soccer team is heading back to state.

As a U-13 squad, this group won a state championship in 1999.

As the No. 1 seed from the South District, Albert Lea earned an automatic berth in the state tournament while posting a 10-0 record in league play, outscoring opponents 57-4.

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The U-16 girls went 4-0 with a 34-3 scoring advantage in the Albert Lea tourney. They finished fourth at Lakeville, going 1-2 but outscoring opponents 8-5. The two losses were 3-1 to a Classic 1 team from River Falls, Wis., and 2-1 to a Classic 2 team from Fargo, N.D. Albert Lea outshot both opponents.

For the season, the U-16 girls have scored 99 goals and allowed 12 in 17 games.

The scoring leaders are Amy Marka with 28, Laura Hillman 21, Katie Stenseth 12, Katie Dooley 11, Crystal Rentz nine, Brianne Plantage four, Char Everhart two, Emily Staloch two, Tara Wrolson two, Emily Bergstrom one and Lacey Pederson one.

With U-15 player Tessa Christenson and Stacy Armstrong pitching in three and two goals, respectively, goalie Nicole Sorenson gave up only 12 goals while posting a record of 15-2. Of the 15 wins, 10 were shutouts.

Defense is the team’s strength, according to coach Paul Marka.

Leading the defense are Mandy Ardolf, Bergstrom, Missy Reichl, Plantage, Dooley, Jenny Hulst and U-15 player Brooke Wuerflein.

The midfielders are led by Everhart, Breanna Millhouse, Stenseth, Staloch, Pederson, first-year player Wrolson and U-15 player Kelly Schreiber.

The forward position is led by Amy Marka, Hillman, Rentz, Sarah Kurth and U-15 players Christenson, Katie Kjos and Armstrong.

All state tournament games will be played at the Blaine Sports Complex.

Albert Lea has games Saturday and Sunday, July 27 and 28, at 1 p.m. on Field K3 and K4, respectively. Game three is Thursday, Aug. 1 at 5 p.m. on Field K4. The championship game is Saturday, Aug. 3 at 11 a.m. on Field H3.