Girls soccer uses summer to prepare for HS season
The high school fall soccer season is still a couple of months away, but local teams are putting in the work this summer in preparation for September.
Salisbury is one of those teams. The CSG Falcons recently shut out H-Town (Saucon Valley) last week, 4-0, in a meeting of Colonial League foes in the Lehigh Valley Summer Soccer League (LVSSL) at Lehigh University. Salisbury improved to 5-1 with the victory in Group B play.
“This is a good preparation for us,” Falcon head coach Rick Babyak said. “This helps us build for the season. There’s no question about it. This is how we start for the fall season. Its’ good for the team bonding, just the girls getting together and playing together as a unit for the first time in awhile.”
Salisbury’s only loss of the summer was against Central Catholic—a 4-1 setback on June 24. Other than that loss, the Falcons have been perfect, especially against Colonial League opponents. Salisbury picked up wins over Notre Dame-Green Pond (4-0), Stroudsburg (1-0), Palisades (5-2) and Southern Lehigh (3-2).
Against Saucon Valley on Thursday, rising sophomore Quinn Wittman scored two goals to help get Salisbury back in the win column. Her second came in the second half to put the Falcons in front 3-0 on a pass from incoming sophomore Aaliyah M’Bai.
Wittman, a forward, figures to be the leading candidate to replace Salisbury’s top goal scorers from last season with the graduations of Rylee Donaldson and Erica Holben. Through the summer, it looks as if she is primed for that role.
“Quinn has been popping in goals,” Babyak said. “Katherine Medina is scoring goals. We are getting goals from other spots as well. We’re a pretty balanced team this year so far. We don’t have high numbers this year, but we have high quality. So that’s not bad.”
Medina is an incoming sophomore as well and is expected to aid in replacing those lost goals from Donaldson and Holben.
Incoming senior Olivia Hoeing is back in her midfield role and one of the Falcon returning leaders on the pitch. She scored Salisbury’s second goal with a left-footed strike against Saucon Valley. Juniors Kerry Seiler and Hannah Mamay and senior Molly Foust will also provide depth in the midfield.
“We’re out there working out twice a week in the mornings right now,” Babyak said. “So we have two games and two workouts a week. The girls out coming out for workouts and summer league. I’m very happy with the way we’re playing at this point. I think we are ahead of where I thought we’d be, particularly defensively we are not afraid to engage.”
Senior Jenna Sartorius and junior Kayla Trenge will anchor Salisbury’s defense. Senior goalkeeper Lily Schimeneck is back in goal after a year under her belt.