Scoring goals wasn’t much of an issue for the 2012 Seaside girls soccer team.

They had Emily Becker, Kaitlin Lewis, Maddy Villegas … and even a few others who were quite capable of finding the back of the net.

How quickly things change.

Becker and Villegas have graduated, and Lewis will give volleyball a try this fall, after knee surgery earlier this year.

If head coach Dave Rouse wanted a challenge as he enters a milestone season, he has one. Still, the Gulls are positive as they begin their 2013 schedule.

The only problem Rouse was dealing with in the preseason was much lower numbers.

“We’re down to 28, from 34 or 35,” said Rouse, entering his 20th year at Seaside. “I didn’t know I would be facing that.”

Sometimes, Rouse said, “when you have a small team you actually do better, because you don’t have to worry about subbing, everybody knows they get to play a lot, and they go out and get the job done. If we can get in shape and avoid injuries, we’ll be OK.

“We’ve got good players, some good freshmen (two will play varsity), and some others have really improved since last year,” he said. “I think we’ll be competitive.”

THE LEAGUE

“Banks and Scappoose are going to be tough,” Rouse said. “That’s the main opposition. Banks has something they haven’t had in the past – they have a couple really nice forwards. They’ve always played tough. They had five coaches out there for the (preseason) tournament, so they’re building a program.

“I don’t think Scappoose will be as strong,” he added. “They lost 12 seniors, plus one of the best players in the state (Ariel Viera). But they still have Lucy Davidson, and she has lots of speed. They had three solid freshmen last year.”

Scappoose coach Chris Dorough, meanwhile, has left the Indians to coach at Catlin Gabel.

THE PLAYERS

Just because Becker and Villegas have graduated and Lewis is playing another sport, that doesn’t mean the cupboard is bare for the Gulls.

Seaside has three more all-league returners ready to pick up the scoring slack.

“We still have Hannah Garhofer (Jr.), Whitney Westerholm (So.) and Alli Utti (Jr.),” Rouse said, along with Maddy Utti.

“All the kids coming back from last year are stronger. Charlotte Blakesley (Jr.) and Brianna Babbitt (Jr.) both look strong; the two seniors (Evelyn Castro and Kayla Perez) look stronger; Reese Januik (Jr.) is good and Bridgette Malone (So.) is fast; and Sophie Trevino (So.) is much improved.”

Elsewhere, “Sydney Villegas (Fr.) is very strong and can play anywhere,” Rouse said. “She may start. The sleepers include Lizzy Barnes (Fr.), who has a lot of speed and played club ball in Portland. She has tons of ability and speed, if she brings her game. Brenda Lopez (So.) has also really improved.”

In goal, the Gulls have two reliable keepers in junior Allison Bussert and freshman backup Kirstin Lent.

 

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