Athleticism powers Plainfield girls' soccer

By Denise Coffey - Staff Writer
Plainfield - posted Mon., Oct. 8, 2012
The Panthers' ball-handling skills are strong. Photos by D. Coffey.
The Panthers' ball-handling skills are strong. Photos by D. Coffey.

The Plainfield High School Panthers soccer team is on track to make it into the ECC tournament this fall, which will make it the first time it's had back-to-back appearances in the school's history. Coach Jon Zielinski attributes the Panthers' strengths to the strong athleticism of the players. “We're fast and our soccer smarts have gotten better over the last couple of years,” he said.

The ECC Small team is led by five seniors and captains Samantha Jimmis, Kourtney Brown, Katrina Roys and Maryellen Sweeny. Jimmis has been a four-year starter and she's been selected to the ECC First Team more than once. 

The Panthers lost two ECC Second Team players to graduation last year, but sophomores Sarah Price and Kerry Latonin have stepped in to become strong defensive replacements.

“Right now we're struggling with consistency,” admitted Zielinski, “but we bring intensity to every single game. We play at the same level against every team.” Their 3-4-1 record includes several overtime games where they've come out on the short end of the stick.

Leading scorer Alicia Cournoyer has eight goals to her credit. “She does a little bit of everything,” Zielinski said. “She gets breakaways, lucky rebounds, and has been on the end of good passes.”

The Panthers lost an overtime game to division rival Griswold on Sept. 26, but they have until their last game on Oct. 30 to build their tournament record.

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