Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Offseason Conditioning Provides Jump on Competition

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Offseason Conditioning Provides Jump on Competition

Article excerpt

Duchesne High girls soccer coach Joe Toigo issued his players a challenge last fall.

"We wanted the players to put in some offseason conditioning work so that we could get right into our training for the season," Toigo said. "For the most part, the girls responded to the challenge. They came into tryouts in great shape and that's allowed us to work a lot more on skills and tactics in the preseason."

The Pioneers, who opened the season Monday with a 2-1 penalty-kick victory over Wentzville in the opening round of the GAC Tournament, were 8-8-1 last season and figure to be much-improved this year.

"Our overall skill level is as high as I've ever seen it," Toigo said. "And because of that, we've been able to move some people around. I really think we're going to be a solid soccer team."

The Pioneers figure to be strongest in the midfield where sophomore Lindsey Rector leads the way. Rector was a second-team All-GAC selection a year ago, finishing with 12 goals and three assists.

"She's tremendously talented and she's also one of the hardest workers on the team," Toigo said.

Junior Jenny Rothermich and promising freshman Alisha Van Dillan figure to start at the other midfield spots, with junior Natalie Oxler and senior Michelle Fink as top reserves there.

Junior Tiffanie Bosely has moved out of the backfield and will play either in the midfield or at forward.

Junior Jamie Miller, a third-team All-GAC defender, also has been shifted to the forward line.

"In other years, when our skill level wasn't as good, we put a lot of our better players in the backfield," Toigo said. "But I feel like we're strong enough back there to move skilled players like Tiffanie and Jamie into the attack.

"We'll be more dangerous up top and I don't think we're giving up much in the back."

Other forward prospects are senior Amy Bruer and juniors Julie Ochs and Maureen Hanratty.

"I'm confident that we'll be able to score a little more often this season," Toigo said. …

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