Girls soccer looks to take home first ever MIC title


J. Westerfield

Senior Riley Williams defends Columbus North players in their 2-2 tie in the season opener.

Sam Findley, Sports Editor

No. 9 Trojan Girls Soccer takes on No. 3 Carmel tonight. Senior Paige Northern knows the matchup is a big one, with it being for the MIC championship and the game being the senior night for the Trojans. 

“Last year we lost 0-3, so we really have to come out this year and prove ourselves. And it’s also a competition for the MIC championship,” Northern said. “Especially on our senior night, winning the game would be a huge motivation going into sectionals soon, and would be super special for us 11 seniors and the rest of the team.”

Carmel is 10-1-2 and is coming off a 0-2 loss to Noblesville. Carmel has been led by top offensive player senior Emily Roper; the Ball State commit has led the team with 13 goals and 6 assists this season. Center Grove senior center back Riley Williams knows that the team must limit Roper’s touches.

“She is their top scorer, so we need to limit how much she gets the ball and be cautious of her abilities,” Williams said. “Hopefully we can get numbers up so that we can score before Roper or any other Carmel girls can.”

Carmel has shown a diverse offense outside of Roper, with Claire Swigart scoring 6 goals this season and Saliyah Brady scoring 6 goals and 7 assists. Senior wingback Casy Zuch has experience playing the Greyhounds. 

“The keys for defensive success against Carmel is going to be containing them until they get frustrated enough to make a mistake, and then that’s where we make moves against them,” Zuch said. “We’re playing a 3-5-2 because the midfield is going to be in possession of the ball, and the midfielders are going to try and stop the players from being able to get the ball to the defense so there isn’t a way to shoot.” 

Coach Mike Bishop has made a recent lineup change, moving junior Kayli Farmer to the wing to give the team an offensive boost. The Trojans reaped the reward, beating Plainfield 2-0 with Farmer assisting on one of the goals. 

“With this new formation it’s giving us more opportunities in the box, and it forces us to go into 1v1s on the wings. I like taking on a defender 1v1 and I’m able to contribute on offense while also being able to contribute on defense,” Farmer said. 

Center Grove’s offense isn’t completely reliant on Farmer. Junior Emily Karr has been dominant this season scoring 13 goals and 5 assists. On top of Karr, senior Peyton Murphy has been an offensive force scoring 7 goals and 6 assists.   

“The key to our offensive line is knowing what to attack. Most times the wings get to the end line and cross it for a good shot, and sometimes diagonal runs work better. It usually depends on the other team’s defense,” Karr said. “No matter the defense though, we are able to adjust and find open runs for goals.”

A win against Carmel would give the Trojans the MIC championship title for the first time in school history. Bishop believes if the Trojans win they could build momentum for sectionals in the upcoming weeks.

“A win gives us a lot of confidence and momentum going into the next couple weeks. I know we have tied Carmel once, but I don’t think we have ever beaten Carmel so a win would be  tremendous for boosting morale and you know getting one for the school,” Bishop said.