In this edition of “The Full 80,” a look at Roosevelt making strides under second-year coach Stanley Holmes.
Roosevelt looking to advance to state for first time since 2000
The road keeps getting tougher and tougher.
Roosevelt High School girls soccer coach Stanley Holmes understands that for sure.
But because of talent all over the field, Holmes remains confident that his team can make a postseason run since taking second in Class 4A state in 2000.
“We have a very strong team overall, and we’re very balanced,” said Holmes, the second-year Roosevelt coach. “I think we have a really good shot to go deep in the playoffs, but with soccer, anything can happen.”
The Roughriders (12-1-4) advanced to Tuesday’s Metro League tournament semifinals at 5 p.m. against Holy Names (12-5-0, No. 2 seed from Metro Sound Division), the only team to beat them this season. The match is at Southwest Athletic Complex.
That semifinal winner faces the semifinal winner of Seattle Prep-Bishop Blanchet on Thursday in the Metro League final at 7 p.m. at Southwest Athletic Complex.
“We’re looking forward to hopefully moving on,” Holmes said. “Seattle Prep is the strongest team in the state for my money.”
The Cougars topped Roosevelt 3-1 on Sept. 20 in a Metro regular-season match. The Roughriders have gone unbeaten in 12 matches since that lone loss.
“We gave up two of those goals on set plays,” Holmes said. “We forgot to mark correctly on those plays, so really it was a 1-1 match. We can correct that.
“That match was a wake-up call defensively for us.”
Roosevelt won the Metro Mountain Division at 10-0-4 with 34 points over Bishop Blanchet (10-1-3, 33). To open postseason play, the Riders beat Ballard (Metro Sound No. 3) 1-0 in overtime shootout on Saturday to reach the Metro semis in a loser-out opener. Roosevelt won the penalty-kicks portion, 6-5, in the first-round Metro League tournament match.
“It really was probably a little bit of nerves not being in that loser-out situation before,” Holmes said.
Roosevelt has outscored teams 67-8 so far this season, posting 10 shutouts with the duo of goalkeepers Serena Toney and Amy Alverson, a pair of sophomores, improving along the way.
“We have a strong defense and a really balanced attack,” Holmes said.
The Roughriders’ defense is led by junior center back Zoe Tyson, who suffered an ACL injury in club prior to her sophomore season, but is back strong again.
“She’s playing like her old self,” Holmes said. “She had play in a big brace last year.”
Outside back Bailey Holifield, a junior, was converted from a midfielder-forward and gives the Riders’ a push offensively from their group of defenders.
“She’s really grown into her role,” Holmes said.
Holmes calls his midfielders “one of the best triangle of midfielders in the state.”
The midfield threesome is comprised of senior captains Arendje “AJ” Louter and Ellen Pattinson and sophomore Emily Kussick. Louter has a team-high seven assists to go with six goals.
“That’s where everything happens on our team,” Holmes said.
Up front, the Roughriders feature senior captain Emily Thiel (6 goals, 5 assists) and senior Hailey Wirth (9 goals, 2 assists).
Link to Metro League 3A tournament bracket:
Around the Area
One team from Washington state – Issaquah at No. 14 — remained in the Top 25 of the national rankings from National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA). Below is the NSCAA’s Oct. 28 poll (the next poll is out today, Nov. 4):
Three teams from Washington are in the NSCAA Region VI Top 15 rankings, led by Issaquah at No. 2 and followed by Skyline of Sammamish at No. 9 and Kentridge at No. 10. The link below is for the Region VI, which came out Oct. 28 (the next poll is out today, Nov. 4):
Four teams from Washington state – Issaquah at No. 10, Kentridge at No. 18, Skyline of Sammamish at No. 31 and Bellevue at No. 32 – are currently in the Fall FAB 50 High School Girls Soccer Rankings from Oct. 28 put out by www.topdrawersoccer.com (the next poll is out today, Nov. 4):