Comets, ‘Cats combine to return 27 letter winners

J. Patrick Eaken

In Northern Buckeye Conference girls soccer, Woodmore and Genoa both return double digit numbers of experienced players, but will have to contend with league favorite and potentially state-ranked Eastwood.
In coach Lauren Colengelo’s second year, the Woodmore girls soccer season has started the season on fire, winning three straight.
The Wildcats defeated Riverdale 4-0, Lake 2-0, and Port Clinton 6-1, outscoring opponents 12-1 and looking to build on last year’s 7-9-1 season. The Wildcats were 3-6-1 in the Northern Buckeye Conference, finishing fourth, and lost their Division III sectional opener to Genoa, 3-0.
Colengalo has 16 letter winners returning, losing only four to graduation.
In the first three games, Autumn Beaudoin has nine points on four goals and one assist, Azure Travis has three goals, Alayna Hahn two goals and two assists, Macey Bauder two goals and one assist, and Marina Rotruck has one goal. Sidney Gillig has two assists and Greta Bauder and Olivia Heidebrink have one assist each.
Combining to allow just one goal in three games are keepers Layla McGinnis, who has 23 saves, and Sophia O’Neill, who has three saves.
The Wildcats lost to graduation Alan Miller Jewelers All-Press Co-Player of the Year Claire Rothert, a first team All-NBC, first team Division III all-district, and second team All-Ohioan, who had 21 goals, three assists. The ‘Cats also lost first team All-NBC and honorable mention all-district goalkeeper Phoebe Jackson, who had 93 saves her senior year.
The other two lost to graduation were HM All-NBC selection Jordan Nighswander, a defenseman who had one goal and HM All-NBC pick Maddion Strickland, a midfielder with two goals and six assists. The only problem with losing those four is they were all four-year letter winners, starting since their freshman season.
Returning are Beaudoin, a senior midfielder/forward who had 13 goals and nine assists and is looking to earn her fourth letter this year. Hahn is a sophomore forward/midfielder, had five goals and five assists who lettered her freshman season. Sophomore midfielder/forward Melanie Hunt scored four goals and two assists her freshman year, lettering, and Greta Bauder, a senior midfielder, had one goal and three assists last year, and has lettered twice.
Beaudoin was HM All-NBC and all-district last year, returnee Sidney Gillig was a first team All-NBC and HM all-district selection at cornerback, Greta Bauder was second team All-NBC, nad Macey Bauder and Hahn were HM All-NBC. Gillig is Woodmore’s only returning first team All-Press selection, also.
Genoa opened the season defeating Northwood 6-0, but then ran into a brick wall. Coach Josiah Hanson told The Press that “league competition is always very competitive” in the NBC and his team found that out in a hurry, losing the league opener to Eastwood, 9-0.
Genoa teams have done well under Hanson, going 56-26-14 in his previous five seasons and the Comets return 11 lettermen from a 2019 team that went 10-3-4 overall and 7-2-2 in the league.
Returning seniors are Tess Neumann, Josie Schwalbe, Olivia Wiciak, Ryan Lay, Emily Dunlap, Taylor Simmons. Returnees earning all-league honors are Wiciak, Simmons, Dunlap, and Gina Goodman.
Wiciak earned second team All-Press honors after getting four goals and two assists and Goodman had three goals and two assists. This is Lay’s second year in goal after getting 50 saves last year.
The Comets graduated forward Tatum Neumann, who was a second team All-Ohioan last year and first team All-Press, first team All-Press outside back Mackenzie Schmidt and second team All-Press outside back Kendall Gerke. Neumann had 27 goals and two assists, Schmidt scored three goals and Gerke had three goals and one assist.


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