ST. GEORGE –The uphill climb has been steady for Dixie State women’s soccer.
Since Coach Kacey Bingham’s arrival to St George, the Dixie State women’s soccer team has improved each year. Taking over a squad that had finished 6-10-2 in 2012, Bingham has followed up with records of 7-7-2 and 10-7-1. The Red Storm have also climbed steadily up the ladder in the Pac West Conference, finishing fifth out of 13 teams last year.
“I understand the rankings are based on last year,” said Bingham. “But anyone who watched us play last year against those teams would recognize that even in those losses we controlled the flow for the majority of the game.”
Point Loma and Cal Baptist are picked to finish first and second.
The theme this year for the team is “No Excuses.”
“We don’t want to go through the season thinking ‘if only,’” said Bingham. “We are training hard. We have the pieces in place. We have set high goals that are definitely within reach.”
The Storm lost leading scorer Jennifer Mason to graduation, but return the Pac West assist leader in Jasmine Arollo (midfielder). They also return a lot of experience with All-Pac West performer Kaisa Rogers (midfielder). They will be joined at midfield by Aubri Detmer.
The back line will be anchored by Montana Tanner and Breanna Parkinson. In goal, there are three players competing for the No. 1 position — Stacie Gubler, All-Pac West performer Danica Nusink and Sarah Beecher, a transfer from New Mexico Highlands University.
Two other transfers that will contribute immediately are Paris Despain (midfielder) and Danica Hansen (defender). Returning from LDS missions are Shelby Christensen (defender) and Megan Marchbanks (forward). Marchbanks was an all-Pac West selection prior to her mission. Both saw considerable action as starters before leaving and return in excellent condition.
Returning on the frontline with Arollo will be all conference performer Erica Gonzalez and Darian McCloy. The roster is stacked with ten freshman. Two freshman that could have an immediate impact are forward Tory Washington and midfielder Lindsay Moffatt. “We are young,” said Bingham. “But the girls we brought in are extremely talented. From top to bottom we are a stronger team.”
The Red Storm will host Southern Utah University in an exhibition game on Sept. 3. Game times for both matches will be 6 p.m. The Red Storm will open the season on the road against Antelope Valley University Sept. 5.
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