Lady Tigers have high goals

Elkins will open campaign today in a home match

Submitted photo The Elkins High School girls soccer team will open the season today at home against Charleston Catholic. Team members include front row, from left to right, Kennedy Hart, Hannah Cutright, Kendall Flynn, Kaelyn Cogar, Thea Kerns, Lydia Blackburn, Brittany White and Alexa Price. Middle row, Sydney Cooper, Anna Belan, Alexa Triplett and Gracie Emery. Back row, head coach Scott Cutright, Erin Dettinger, Libbie Lynch, Isabella Karlen, Taylor Oldaker, Madison Holland, Sofia Triplett, Alyssa Severino, Summer Channell and assistant coach Kaitlyn Buoni. Not pictured: Taylor Williams and Celia Ricottilli.

ELKINS — With several key players returning from last season’s 14-4-3 team, expectations are high for the Elkins High School girls soccer team entering the 2019 campaign.

The Lady Tigers, who dropped a 3-2 decision to Philip Barbour in last year’s sectional title game, will open play today at home against Charleston Catholic. Game-time is scheduled for 6 p.m.

“We have a good group of seniors back with high expectations,” said Elkins coach Scott Cutright. “We had a few injuries at the end of the season last year that hurt us down the stretch, and we feel that we ended the year with some things unfinished.”

Headlining the list of returners for Elkins is senior striker Sofia Triplett, who led the Lady Tigers in scoring last season. Triplett was a second team all-state selection and first team all-Big 10 Conference choice.

“Sofia is a very strong player,” Cutright said. “She has a lot of strength and some great speed. She is one of the best goal scorers we’ve had around here in a long time.”

The Inter-Mountain file photo Senior Sofia Triplett returns for Elkins after being named to the Class AA-A all-state second team and Big 10 Confernce first team last season.

Elkins will also have the luxury of returning its top assist player from a year ago in senior Isabella Karlen.

Cutright says that Karlen distributes the ball as well as anyone and has a great read of the game.

Seniors Alyssa Severino, Madison Holland and Erin Dettinger also return to the fold this season for Elkins.

Severino will serve as a midfielder on the team, while Holland and Dettinger will likely be used as defenders.

Anna Belan and Alexa Triplett also saw time on the varsity squad last season as freshmen and will be counted on for more production this year as sophomores.

“We’re just hoping to get everyone to contribute no matter where we have them on the field,” Cutright said.

“We’ve looked good in the preseason and hopefully we can get off to a good start against a strong Charleston Catholic team that finished runner-up in the state the last two seasons (in Class AA-A).”

The Lady Tigers, who spent most of last season ranked in the Top 5 in Class AA-A, finished at No. 6. After today’s matchup, Elkins will remain home to battle South Harrison on Monday.

“We always go into the season with the goal of winning a state title,” Cutright said. “Hopefully everything falls into place this season and we can make a run at accomplishing it this year.”