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Lewis Mills girls soccer 2011. The Spartans look to rebuild after losing much to graduation. Special thanks to Mills coach Dennis Fowler.

POSTED September 10, 2011
BY Timothy W. Gaffney
Twitter: @TimothyGaffney

Lewis Mills Girls Soccer: 2011 Season Preview

Conference: Berkshire League

Varsity Coach: Dennis Fowler (9th season, 122-20-5)

2010 Record: 19-1 overall. (Class M Finalist, lost to Suffield 1-0), 16-0-0 BL Champions (20th in 24 years of BL play)

Key Loses: Striker Lindsey Muri (three-time All-State Striker, 80 career goals), midfielder Bobbi Bergstrom (Class M All-State and three-time First Team All-BL), goalie Lindsey Brown (two-time First Team All-BL) and five other seniors.

Returning Starters: Sr. Striker Paige Marinelli (18 goals, 18 assists, First Team All-BL in 2010), Sr. defender Shannon Larkin (Second Team All-BL), Soph. defender Emily Nepomuceno, Soph. midfielder MacKenzie Bergstrom.

Expected to Contribute: Sr. midfielder Melinda Noel, Jr. midfielder Mikaela Hillsburg, Jr. goalie Mikky Adams, Jr. Monique Claude. Jr. striker Hope Sherman, Jr. defender Cassidy Lockwood, Soph. striker Baily Pace, Soph. midfielder Anna Marinelli and Soph. defender Lesleigh Carter.

Key Newcomers: Soph. goalie Taylor Anderson, Soph. midfielder Shannon Doyle, Soph. striker Julia Pearson.

Team Strengths: Senior Leadership

Team Weaknesses: Varsity Experience

Team Outlook: Lewis Mills is coming off one of the most dominating seasons in recent BL history, where it went 16-0 and obscured its opponents by a staggering 96-6 margin. The Spartans made it all the way to the Class M Finals, losing 1-0 to Suffield and finished 19-1 overall. This year’s team will be in a rebuilding mode, as it will have to replace eight seniors, including seven starters.

There is reason for optimism, however, with the return of four quality starters.

Marinelli was one of the top players in the BL last year with her 18 goals and 18 assist effort, which earned her First Team All-BL honors. Larkin is regarded as one of the best defenders in the state and has signed a letter of intent to play for Quinnipiac next year. Coach Fowler calls Bergstrom and Nepomuceno two of the most talented sophomores he has ever had. The Spartans will need many of its talented younger players to quickly adapt to their new roles as starters on the varsity.

While they may have lost a bunch of talent to graduation, don’t count the Spartans out of the running just yet. Talented programs like the one Fowler has continue to churn out numbers to replace those who came before them.

Conference Outlook: Nonnewaug will return most of its team from 2010 including the dynamic duo of Georgia Gibson and Sydney Spremullo.

“They have the experienced, talented players we had last year,” Fowler said, “They will be tough to beat.”

Fowler also believes Litchfield will be competing at the top with two Class M powers, Shepaug and Northwestern.

An early season gem opens the 2011 season on Tuesday when the Spartans host the Cowboys.





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