Seymour girls soccer getting better by the week


When Saturday’s game ended, the Seymour girls soccer team departed its home stadium with three players on crutches and one who seemingly purchased stock in an ice-making company.

Assorted bumps and bruises required the medical treatment, but it wasn’t as if the Owls were sadly limping away. They had just defeated Silver Creek 3-0 in a game that was more of a rout than it read.

The Dragons had arrived in Seymour 7-0 and are probably still trying to figure out where the hurricane came from since meteorologists would likely not have predicted it.

[sc:text-divider text-divider-title=”Story continues below gallery” ]Click here to purchase photos from this gallery

“We were good last year,” said senior Addi Chandler, “but we’re a heck of a lot better this year.”

The open-ended closing paragraph for Seymour’s 2020 story, though, is how much better? Coach Greg Musser and the players will concede they are getting better by the week but also believe they are not yet the best they can be.

The result of the Silver Creek match was a vote of encouragement. The Owls, 5-1-1 on the year, controlled the game in all facets. They outshot the visitors 14-2. Keeper Ellen Zabor was so rarely threatened she had time to figure her dinner menu at the lonely end of the field, and the offense kept up the pressure throughout.

“Our defense has just been solid,” said Musser, who has been waxing enthusiastic about his team game after game as he senses steady improvement. “There have been some aha moments in practice.”

Musser, who prefers coaching barefoot until the weather forbids it, indicating he may be a beach volleyball coach at heart, said the team’s depth is showing well. A trio of players were relying on crutches temporarily at game’s end, but that didn’t dent Musser’s optimism.

A fourth, Kylee Nowling, wore ice packs on both feet and on one knee but by comparison to those teammates couldn’t have been too injured.

Altogether, this amounted to more playing time for players to blend their talents with the regulars.

“I can trust all the players,” junior Haley Westfall said.

Although the Owls were in command against a good team, they were not going all giddy quite yet, not by any shot convinced they are the perfect team.

“We still have room to improve,” Westfall said.

Chandler concurred.

“We have things to fix,” she said.

Yet senior Alyssa Perry said she thinks other teams around the area, friends and relatives are all starting to pick up on an Owls vibe, forming impressions that this is a pretty good team with even more potential.

“We feel we’re definitely starting to get noticed,” Perry said.

Even with limitations on attendance due to the COVID-19 restrictions, Perry said she senses louder cheering and more support. The players are getting the infectious feeling that comes with being part of a winner.

“Oh yeah,” she said, “it’s fun to win.”

It is still early enough that no bold predictions spill forth from the players’ lips outside of the fundamental one they adopt at the start of each season: Take the sectional crown.

“We’ve always had that,” Chandler said of the basic sectional aspiration. “But as we’ve gotten farther along in the season, we’ve emphasized more goals. We’re definitely showing where we stand.”

Mostly, the Owls were standing around the Silver Creek net the other day, the purple posing up-close danger, moving the ball well, pinning it near the opposing netminder.

Chandler, Kate Connell and Perry accounted for the goals. Perry, for those paying attention, for the most part provided a different type of threat than other Owls. Perry is left-footed, and most of the other players only put their left foot on the ball when dribbling. They did their serious kicking with their right foot.

“Sometimes,” Perry admitted of how her going left side fools defenders so used to sealing off boots with the right foot. “It definitely throws them off.”

Perry can cross up almost anyone on her propensity to go left or right. The booming kicks may come off her left foot in soccer. When playing softball, she bats left but throws right.

Sounds like a slick definition of being ambidextrous.

No posts to display