Burnsville girls’ soccer coach John Soderholm was curious how his veteran players would mesh with his inexperienced members for the 2013 season.
Soderholm couldn’t be more pleased through the first three weeks of the season. The Class 2A, No. 5 Blaze (7-0-1) opened the season with six consecutive shutouts. The streak ended in a 4-1 victory over Bloomington Jefferson, but the Blaze followed that with a 2-0 shutout against Coon Rapids.
“The girls have really come together nicely this year,” Soderholm said. “They have really worked hard as a group, so we are lucky and grateful for that.”
Junior Darby Lofthus has seen the most time in goal, but classmate Josephine Archambault also has figured in the mix.
“The two are fantastic keepers in every facet of the game,” Soderholm said. “Even better is the fact they train well together and are truly supportive of one another.”
The goalkeeping tandem has benefited from solid defense, anchored by senior Hannah Keirstead.
Burnsville’s outside backs are senior Betsy Peterson and sophomores Emily Haberlack and Kayla Johnson. Soderholm’s “unsung hero” on the back line is junior Amanda Hartmann.
“She has stepped up and really become a complete player this year,” Soderholm said. “She has a great work ethic and has been particularly good for the younger players as a mentor.”
Swimmer sets marks
Farmington senior Kaitlyn O’Reilly set a school record in the Tigers’ 95-89 victory over Class 1A defending state champion Northfield in a Missota Conference swimming dual meet.
O’Reilly won the 200-yard individual medley in a record time of 2 minutes, 10.07 seconds. She also set the pool record in Red Wing in the event with a time of 2:11.14.
O’Reilly also set the school mark in the 100 breaststroke with a time of 1:07.05. She finished second to Northfield freshman Sophia Nevin.
“Kaitlyn is a very goal-driven student-athlete and is willing to put the work in to achieve her goals,” Tigers coach Jen Marshall said. “She realizes it’s the little things in her races that make the biggest impact, and is constantly working to fine tune them.”
O’Reilly later played a big role in Farmington winning the maroon division in the Maroon & Gold Invitational at the University of Minnesota Aquatic Center.
• Eastview senior Pierce Erickson scored seven goals in a three-game stretch for the boys’ soccer team. He recorded a hat trick against Lakeville South and registered two goals in each of the other games. Erickson is the leading scorer for the Class 2A, No. 5 Lightning (5-1-0). It is the defending state champion.
• Eagan girls’ cross-country runner Anna Van Wyk won in the Lakeville North Invitational at Aronson Park. She covered the 4-kilometer course in 14 minutes, 26.7 seconds to win the 20-team meet.