Fox Chapel girls soccer to rely on returning starters in new section
The Fox Chapel girls soccer team posted a 9-1 section record (13-6-1 overall) last year to win the section crown and then advanced to the quarterfinals of the WPIAL Class 4A playoffs before falling to eventual champion Penn-Trafford.
This year, the Foxes will have to replace some key graduation losses and also move to a new section. Gone from the schedule will be section foes Allderdice, Penn Hills, Woodland Hills, Plum and Brashear. Their new opponents in Section 3-4A area Seneca Valley, North Allegheny, Butler, Pine-Richland, North Hills and Shaler. Seneca Valley, North Allegheny, Butler and Pine-Richland all qualified for the WPIAL playoffs last season.
“The competition in the new section is a bigger challenge for us than just filling roles of graduated players,” FC coach Peter Torres said. “Every team in the section has a strong soccer tradition. We will be looking for our returning starters to step up to lead the other girls as both teammates and varsity players.”
The Foxes boast a wealth of experienced senior starters that include Maura Curry, Kate Feczko, Theresa Heidenreich, Sabrina McQuarrie, Julie Scheffler, Lexie Schutzman and Sarah Sinnott, a Pitt recruit. Returning juniors include Claudia DeMartino, Blair Echnat, Sophie Williams and sophomore Lucy Ream. Heidenreich, McQuarrie and Schutzman, a West Chester State recruit, will anchor a defense that includes junior Samantha Dockey and sophomore Emma Wecht. Both started last year
Torres has a pleasant situation in goal with Feczko and Scheffler sharing time.
“Having two senior keepers who could start for any other school is both a blessing and a curse,” he said. “Only one keeper can play at any given time, and sharpness only comes from constant game play. Both have delivered in big games for us.”
The Foxes start the season at home against Penn-Trafford on Sept. 1, and the first section game will be Sept. 5 at Butler.
“We have a really good core with great soccer ability, experience and futures.” Torres said, “We’ll need everyone performing at 100 percent to be successful against the teams we’ll see this fall and in the playoffs.”