Thu, Sep 29 2011 10:03 PM Posted By: John Philip Wyllie
With many of its key players returning from last year’s championship team, the Bonita Vista Barons appear to be the favorite to capture the 2011 Metro Conference field hockey crown. Last year’s league runners-up Eastlake and Otay Ranch will likely provide solid competition, but the 2011 Barons look like the team to beat.
“We were 7-1 in league last year and about 14-5 overall,” BVHS veteran coach Ernesto Luna said. “Having lost only three starters from that team, we are in very good shape.”
Recent results would seem to confirm that.
The Barons reached the semifinals of the Otay Ranch tournament Sept. 10-17 before being knocked out by eventual tournament champion Newport Harbor. That defeat and a one goal loss to (perennial powerhouse) San Pasqual are the only two blemishes on the team’s record thus far.
The Barons will once again be led by center midfielder/center forward Mailyn Nishiguchi.
Nishiguchi, who has benefited from years of competitive club play, was the league’s co-player of the year in 2010. She will team up with four-year varsity star Sarah Lim.
Lim also works the middle of the field as either the center mid or center forward and, like Nishiguchi, has great speed and stick skills. The two of them together form the heart of the Baron attack and are returning first team all-league players.
Flank midfielders Samantha Montoya and Debbie Crawford will be called upon to use their tremendous stamina to work the left and right sidelines.
“Both offensively and defensively those two will keep the ball in front of us,” Luna said. “They are our first line of attack and much of the play will run through them.”
BV’s other 2010 conference first teamer was sweeper Rebecca Arce. She can cover a lot of ground and is adept at organizing a defense.
Aggressive center back Elizabeth Fulton drew an honorable mention for her play last season. She returns as a key cog in the defense. Fulton’s physical presence will aid much improved goal keeper Cassidy Arendt who is starting for the first time in the net. Another key starter on BV’s solid defense is left back Brittany Torres.
“If we can continue to play together and stay focused and hungry, I can’t see why we won’t repeat,” Luna said.
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