Albion girls returning solid nucleus

By Mike Wertman, Sports Writer Posted 23 August 2016 at 5:22 pm
082316_MW_Albion girls soccer

Photo by Mike Wertman – Albion’s large veteran contingent includes, in front, Zoe Chatfield, Emily Blanchard, Nicole Eldred, Natalie DiCureia and Vivian Rivers. In back are Brylie Hapeman, Sarah Gregori, Isabella Prest, Catherine Thom, Katie Mann, Elisabeth Baker and Shelby Restivo.

A dozen returnees provide a strong nucleus for the Albion girls soccer team as the Purple Eagles look to improve upon last year’s 7-7 Niagara-Orleans League record.

Senior forward/midfielder Emily Blanchard, who earned first team N-O All-League honors, and senior defender Vivian Rivers, a second team honoree, head Albion’s veteran group. Blanchard scored a team high 23 goals and added 15 assists last year.

That veteran contingent also includes seniors Catherine Thom (forward), Nicole Eldred (forward), Shelby Restivo (defender), Isabella Prest (goalie), Katie Mann (defender); juniors Elisabeth Baker (defender) and Natalie DiCureia (defender) along with sophomores Brylie Hapeman (forward), Zoe Chatfield (defender) and Sarah Gregori (forward). Eldred had 5 goals and 5 assists and Hapeman 4 goals and 5 assists last year.

“We’ve got some good experience back and we should be solid defensively,” said Coach Bruce Blanchard. “The big key is we’ve got to be able to score.”

Albion’s key losses to graduation include defender/forward Mariah Elsenheimer and midfielders Ally Page and Mikayla Yaskulski . Elsenheimer had 15 goals and 5 assists, Page 7 goals and 9 assists and Yaskulski 6 goals and 3 assists.

Albion opens the N-O season at Akron on August 30.

The Purple Eagles season will also be highlighted by the participation in two tournaments, at Holley on September 1 and 3 and at Kendall on September 8 and 10.

August: 30 – at Akron, 4:30 p.m.
September: 1 and 3 at Holley Tournament; 6 – at Newfane, 4:30 p.m.; 8 and 10 at Kendall Tournament; 12 – Wilson, 4:30 p.m.; 15 – at Medina, 4:30 p.m.; 17 – Roy-Hart, 10 a.m.; 19 – at Barker ,4:30 p.m.; 24 – Akron, 5 p.m.; 27 – Barker, 6:30 p.m.; 30 – Newfane, 6:30 p.m..
October: 4 – at Roy-Hart, 6:30 p.m.; 6 – at Wilson, 4:30 p.m.; 8 – Medina, 10 a.m.