That’s the number of goals the Lyons Township High School girls soccer team has allowed this season. The Lions have outscored their opponents 61-0 this spring.
LTHS coach Bill Lanspeary says it has been a complete team effort defensively.
“Our back line is phenomenal,” he said. “Our keeper is great, and the pressure our midfielders and forwards place on the other team helps our defenders.”
In addition to their strong defense — led by goalkeeper Izzy Lee, the Lions (14-0) are balanced offensively. Jordan Lee-Caracci has a team-high nine goals, Keira Sullivan eight, Ava Dallavo and Eleanor Musgrove seven apiece, and Katie O’Malley six.
Yet despite its regular season record and goals-against performance, LTHS is seeded second in the IHSA Class 3A Morton Sectional, behind Benet Academy. One would think the Lions would be disappointed with that seeding, but Lanspeary says they are not.
“I haven’t had a chance to see Benet yet, but I know they’re really good. I get it, and that’s fine,” he said. “Our sectional is deep, and there are a lot of tough teams.”
In order to have success in the state tournament, Lanspeary feels LTHS needs to maintain its defensive excellence and clinical finishing in front of goal.
“We need to maintain our poise and finish the chances that we get. In other words, just keep things rolling like they have been,” he said.
Naz back on track heading into playoffs
The Roadrunners started the season well with a 7-0-1 record. But an injury to four-year varsity starting midfielder Juliana Iacono halted momentum as Nazareth went winless in its’ next seven contests, losing five.
However, back-to-back victories over Marian Central and Carmel to end the season gave Nazareth a 9-5-3 record. Moreover, they have improved the Roadrunners’ outlook heading into postseason play.
“As the games went on, we stopped focusing on the results. Instead, we focused on getting better together,” said Nazareth coach Alex Wilkinson. “We learned to adjust quickly to our opponent’s formation and find ways to create scoring opportunities. Most importantly, we do not quit.”
Senior midfielder Adriana Berruti (15 goals, 8 assists) and freshman forward Olivia Austin (12 goals, 2 assists) have been the top players for the Roadrunners, who are the third seed at the Class 3A Solorio Sectional.
Nazareth enters the playoffs with a simple approach that could be beneficial in the state tournament.
“Our girls understand it’s about growing each game and becoming better soccer players. If we have this mindset, winning the game will take care of itself,” Wilkinson said.