A preview of the 2023 Trinity Lutheran girls soccer team

Trinity Lutheran girls soccer coach Thom Hayes is hoping to have a lot of questions answered on Saturday.

Hayes is going into his fifth season as coach. He is working with 14 girls on the roster this season.

The girls will compete in a scrimmage against Jennings County on Saturday.

“Our strength is going to be new players that are going to be eager to learn,” Hayes said. “I was happy about that. We’ve had a week and a half of practice. Everyone seems to have smiles on their faces and are having fun, so I like that.”

The seniors are Addison Keaton, Kaydence Miller and Dianna Munoz.

“Kaydence is a very strong returning player, so she’ll help us keep a strong defense. Addison is a senior, but she is new to soccer,” Hayes said.

“(Junior) Layla Jones gets better every year, and she has already shown that is the case this year. I’m happy to see what she can do for us,” the coach said. “Delaney (Williams) will probably continue in her role in the midfield.”

Experienced sophomores returning are Hannah Helt and Bailey Reimer. They were new to soccer last year, and Hayes said they made a lot of progress last fall.

“They’ve come out and act like they know what they’re doing, so that is a positive sign,” he said. “I’m looking for scoring off of speed. Layla is the fastest player we’ve got. Zoe (Croquart) is in goal right now, but she has a lot of soccer experience and also has some speed.

“We’ll probably keep Kaydence back on defense because we need her there,” he said. “Those two, with their speed, can hopefully create some scoring chances. I feel good about having Kaydence back there because even if we have inexperienced people with her, she will direct them.”

Hayes said his team will probably play conservative, and he will keep everybody spread out more and less up the middle of the field.

“We’ll let the opponents have the outside until we kind of get our soccer feet going to where we’re conditioned and experienced to know how to defend well,” he said. “The goal is to just keep rotating in and out of the midfield and keep it as tight as possible. It will be nice for them to have that experience (at Jennings) before we play Monday.”

The girls will host Providence at 6 p.m. Monday to kick off their season.