(John Spytek photo)
The Monroe County high school girls soccer scene features plenty of prime-time players, making this year’s selection of the Republic-Times All-Local Team that much more difficult.
A Columbia High School standout tops this year’s list.
PLAYER OF THE YEAR
Lauren Kaempfe, Columbia: Kaempfe closed out her high school soccer career in spectacular fashion this spring. The speedy senior midfielder was a sparkplug for the Eagles, racking up 15 goals and six assists to earn All-State honors from the Illinois High School Soccer Coaches Association while leading her team to a regional championship.
Erika Lloyd, Waterloo: Lloyd narrowly missed taking home Player of the Year honors for a second consecutive spring following another superb season. The dynamic junior forward helped lead the Bulldogs to a 20-4 record, scoring 17 goals — seven of which were game-winners — and adding 12 assists.
Abby Hasenstab, Gibault: Hasenstab established herself as a force to be reckoned with this spring. A junior forward, Hasenstab paced the Hawks offense, notching 13 goals along with eight assists.
Sydney Luedeman, Waterloo: Luedeman was a key memberof the Bulldogs’ potent offensive attack. A midfielder, Luedeman tallied 13 goals — including eight game-winners — to go along with eight assists. Just a freshman, Luedeman will be an important piece of what looks to be a bright future for Waterloo soccer.
Lauren Tolan, Columbia: Tolan did it all for CHS this year, scoring goals and setting up her teammates while controlling the midfield for the Eagles. In addition to filling up the stat sheet (11 goals, four assists), Tolan also provided leadership and direction to her teammates, helping Columbia to a second straight regional title.
Carley Olson, Gibault: Another rising star in the Hawks’ junior class, Olson had a wonderful campaign in 2015. Olson tormented opposing defenses throughout the season, scoring 14 goals while assisting on six others.
Casey Wood, Columbia: Wood was a two-way threat for the Eagles this season. In addition to anchoring a strong CHS defense, Wood was also an offensive force, scoring eight goals to go along with eight assists.
Lizzie Kuerz, Gibault: Kuerz was an integral player for the Hawks this year. A senior, Kuerz held down Gibault’s staunch back line and chipped in four goals and an assist. More importantly, Kuerz was a natural leader, guiding her team to a third consecutive regional crown and an appearance in the sectional championship game.
Sidney Metzger, Waterloo: A junior defender, Metzger came up big for the Bulldogs this spring. Metzger provided strength and stability to Waterloo’s defense, and also contributed on offense, knocking in three goals to go along with six assists. Maddie O’Neill, Gibault: An unsung hero for the regional champion Hawks, O’Neill had an outstanding season. The junior midfielder was a centerpiece of Gibault’s offense, putting up an impressive stat-line of seven goals and eight assists.
Alison Riddle, Columbia: Opponents had a difficult time solving Riddle this season. Playing against top-tier competition, the reliable junior goalkeeper was practically a brick wall in net, posting nine shutouts and a .873 save percentage.
Robyn Lindsey, Gibault; Blair Wittenbrink, Columbia; Heather Elliot, Waterloo; Morgan Glaenzer, Columbia; Shannon Rettig, Waterloo; Jess Wittenauer, Gibault; Darby Nugent, Waterloo; Madelyn Juenger, Columbia; Sierra Berg, Waterloo; Samantha Bostick, Columbia; Kelly Dooley, Gibault
Bailey Huebner, Waterloo; Alexis Wheeler, Waterloo; Mackenzie Lowe, Columbia; Taylor Parks, Columbia; Emma Novack, Waterloo; Rachel Kuerz, Gibault; Kat Finnerty, Waterloo