YAH NAING OO
St. Paul Humboldt soccer
It was difficult for Humboldt coach John Pucci to believe that Oo, whom he coached last year as a sophomore, was the same player who showed up for this season. Oo, a Thai refugee of Karen descent, was 6 inches taller and significantly heavier. Pucci moved him from forward to the center back position, and a potential star was born.
“He’s been lights-out back there, a real force for us,” Pucci said. “He’s probably the best center back in the conference. Coaches from other teams are asking about him.”
Leading a back line that has given up just one goal this season, the Hawks are in the midst of one of the best seasons in team history. They’re 6-1, second in the St. Paul Conference and seeded No. 2 in the city conference tournament.
Oo’s talents are not just on the defensive side. He’s scored three goals this season, all on free kicks of longer than 30 yards. Despite being a relative newcomer to the U.S., having only been here about six years, he’s a successful and dedicated student as well.
“He’s got an amazing leg,” Pucci said. “He’s super hardworking and has a 4.3 GPA. He was going to do PSEO [Post-Secondary Education Options] before COVID hit. He’s going to do big things.”
After an 0-2-1 start to the season, the Huskies have three consecutive clean-sheet victories, over Totino-Grace, Armstrong and Elk River. Cole, a senior midfielder, averaged three points per game during the streak, scoring five goals and adding four assists.
Seeking a scoring boost, Wildcats coach Ty Seim moved Kaeding, a junior, from wing to forward. The move paid dividends immediately. Kaeding had a hat trick and an assist in a victory over Hutchinson and added two more goals in a victory over Mound Westonka.
Minnehaha Academy soccer
The senior notched a hat trick in a 7-2 romp over Providence Academy, giving her 52 goals for her career. The team leader in scoring, Larson, who has committed to Northern State, is only the third player in team history to reach 50 career goals.
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