Editor's note: This is one in a series of articles featuring the Lawrence soccer teams that participate in the Premier league of Heartland Soccer Assn.
The U14/15 Kaw Valley Force girls soccer team finished a tumultuous season on Sunday and will begin playing in league playoffs at Heritage Soccer Park in Olathe on Friday. The team moved up to the A league, the most prestigious and difficult playing division, this spring, but has faced challenges along the way. I talked with Greer Lang, the team's manager, about the move and got her post-season reactions.
How many players are on the U14/15 Girls A league team team?
Who were the standout players this season?
Grace Lang Sweeper, center midfielder
Kayley Tefdahl Forward, wing
Hannah Carlson Forward, sweeper
Sarah Schneider Center midfielder
Jordan Payne Goalie
What made the team an A league team?
"We moved up to the competitive A league this spring because of our competitiveness and good record in our Division 1 play," Lang said.
What competition does the team have?
In regular league play:
Top Blue Valley Stars teams
In tournaments, teams from:
Iowa, Minnesota and
"The girls just played some out of state teams in the 'Just For Girls' soccer tournament in Iowa three weeks ago," Lang said.
Where are games played?
Heritage Park in Olathe in the Heartland Soccer Association league.
What were some of the goals of the team this season?
An even win-loss record.
"We wanted to break 500 even," Lang said. "It's been rough moving up to the A league though."
What were you most looking forward to this season?
Watching the dedication of the players to the sport of soccer.
"The biggest thing is the girls deciding to stay with the sport," Lang said. "We had several strong players who left the team, so we really wanted to finish with style as a team."
What were the biggest challenges facing the team this season?
Moving up from Division 1 play to A league play.
"We have a core of very strong players, but the move was a stretch for some of the other players," Lang said. "The competitiveness of the league has made some of weak spots more visible than they were in Division 1. The move has stretched the capabilities of the team, but has also permitted them to grow."
What was the team's best playing experience this season?
Beating the Kansas Rush team from Olathe.
"We played them in the past and consistently could not beat them," Lang said. "We played them this season and beat them."
"We were also accepted into the annual tournament that Kansas Rush puts on for the first time," Lang said. "The girls really earned that respect."
What was the team's most anticipated game of the season?
Playing KC Legacy.
"A former team member is on the Legacy team so we wanted to make a good showing," Lang said.
What is the team's season record?
1 win, 3 losses
The girls sit at sixth place in their division out of seven teams in the U14/15 A league.
2 losses, 1 tie
Iowa "Just For Girls" Tourna-
ment- 1 win, 1 loss, 1 tie
Governor's Cup- 2 losses,