Bennett from the Bleachers: Women’s soccer nationally ranked, has State title potential

Bennett Durando
Sports Columnist

BENNETT BLEACHERSWebster’s women’s soccer team has always had high expectations. This year especially, why shouldn’t they?

The Stateswomen made a statement to open the season in the Gulf Coast Classic in Alabama, taking home the tournament title in convincing fashion. They went 4-0 in the tourney, including a 9-0 win in group play that sent their message loud and clear from Gulf Shores all the way back to Missouri, where they will be chasing after a State championship.

The team is currently ranked second in stltoday’s large school area rankings and is nationally ranked fifth according to the National Soccer Coaches Association of America. That rank is in jeopardy though after the team suffered its first loss in heartbreaking fashion, 2-1 in double overtime versus Rockwood Summit.

Despite losing their undefeated record, the Stateswomen are 12-1 entering rivalry week. The loss won’t take away from the threat Webster poses to other top teams in the state. Unshaken by the defeat, the team turned around and won 5-1 at Parkway West.

The Stateswomen have a goal that is not at all unrealistic: win a State championship. In a school year where the men’s team has already captured its first State title, it would be a legendary year for Webster soccer if the women’s team could join them.

Rivalry week starts with Webster taking on Kirkwood at Selma Field on April 22. Three days later (with another game sandwiched in between), the Stateswomen go down the street to Nerinx Hall to meet the nemesis neighbor to all women’s sports at WGHS. It’s a difficult stretch that will test their stamina against their two rivals, who both will be hungry for an upset of the top notch Statesmen.

Webster is a team led by talents like senior Maddie Pokorny, who has committed to play Division One college soccer at SLU next year.

The team has a winning formula, and its balance from upper to underclassmen is spectacular. The team includes senior leaders like Pokorny and star goalie Charlotte Kennedy, and upcoming underclassmen such as sophomore Jacqueline Baetz who are already proving impactful in a starting role. As a freshman, Baetz was fourth on the team in points with 19.

Sitting in the national rankings, the Stateswomen hope to make this a two times as special year for Webster Groves High School.

Categories: Column, Sports

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