We continued our district soccer previews today with District 13 A-AA.
Yesterday, I looked at Division II-A West. For the next three days, I will look at the three Class A-AA districts.
Having three districts in Class A-AA is major change from last year when 13 A-AA and 14 A-AA were combined into one region because 13 A-AA did not have enough teams to compete as a district.
Many of the top teams from Region 7 A-AA were moved into District 13 A-AA. Dyersburg and Westview met in the region championship match the past four years. Both are in 13 A-AA, but will have a different look this season.
The Lady Cavaliers must replace an important part of their attack as Carli Sisson, The Jackson Sun’s 2012 Offensive Player of the Year, has graduated along with Katie Williams.
Crockett County is also under a new head coach in Justin Cichello.
Seniors Janea Clement and Tara Dillon will be two of the leaders on this year’s team that will try to keep the Lady Cavaliers competitive in West Tennessee.
The Lady Trojans have been the team to beat in Region 7 A-AA the past four years, as they have won four straight region titles and advanced to the state tournament in 2009 and ’10.
Dyersburg beat Westview 3-2 last year in the title game, but lost to Liberty in sectionals.
The Lady Trojans should again have a tough team under Greg Stapleton as Sadie Liljenquist will lead the attack.
The Lady Rebels will look to improve this season and try to make a run in the postseason.
McKenzie was put out in the first round of the Region 7 A-AA tournament last year by Crockett County.
The Lady Rebels reached the Region 7 A-AA semifinals last season before falling to Dyersburg 5-0.
Obion County had an overtime win over South Gibson in the quarterfinals to reach that spot.
Soccer at Obion County has improved over the past couple of years under head coach Daniel Johnston as the boys’ team reached sectionals last year before losing to Trinity Christian Academy.
The Lady Hornets have not fared well in overtime during the postseason the past three years. They lost in all three times.
But this could be the year South Gibson turns it around. This is the second year the Lady Hornets have been under head coaches Michael Young and Ethan Ellis.
South Gibson returns seven starters from last season. Junior Abby Alexander will lead the Lady Hornets on attack after scoring 23 goals and adding six assists last year.
Junior Emily Rice will work to control the midfield for South Gibson.
The Lady Chargers were hit hard by graduation after last season with six seniors on the roster. Leading scorer Kayla Guthrie, goalkeeper Makenzie Vincent and midfielder Shelby Donavant are gone.
Westview will also be under a new head coach as Matt Cupples stepped down following last season. Hannah Steadman is the new head coach.
One positive for the Lady Chargers is that they have eight rising seniors this season, so leadership on the team should be fine.
Watch for players like Reagan Brock and Alex Crosser to step up.
Predicted order of finish:
2. South Gibson
4. Obion County
5. Crockett County
District semifinals: Dyersburg vs. Obion County; South Gibson vs. Westview
District championship: Dyersburg vs. South Gibson
District champion: Dyersburg