Girls soccer thrives under new system


Photo Credit: Wikimedia Commons

A soccer ball about to be struck.

by Dylaney Sabino, Contributing Writer

The girl’s varsity soccer team has begun their season with several victories and successes. Having played nearly undefeated against many teams in its conference, including Manchester, Hawthorne, Eastern Christian, Lodi, and Rutherford.

Coach Lona Ozrek is new to Glen Rock High School’s soccer program this year, having previously coached the Women’s Dominican College team. He says they are progressing very well and have embraced “his philosophy and incorporated that on the field.” The players show up at practice ready to learn and improve. The players’ dedication, open mindedness, and attitude toward soccer and hard work are exactly what Coach Ozrek attributes the team’s early success too, having seen much improvement in their skills since their preseason.

Coach Ozrek says, “My expectations are always high and honestly I think we are achieving it.” 

“Our next achievement is to continue with the success and hopefully do well in the counties and states!” Coach Ozrek believes that every school they face is a new challenge and rival. “You never know what’s going to be on any given day. You’ve got to come out and play hard every game.”

Senior Mary Geen has been playing on the team for four years now, and she definitely sees new progress when it comes to her and her teammates. “The way he practices, I think we go through everything really well. He works with us individually and as a team, too” she said. The new practice style has challenged and motivated players who feel it is “more intense” than in previous years.

Geen feels that there is a big difference in the way they operate this year. “The seniors we have on our team this year, I think each and every one of us care a lot. This year there is more drive,” she said. Just like her coach, Geen feels confident when it comes to this year’s season.

As well as the team’s six seniors, there are also a number of new and returning sophomores and juniors as well as a freshman. Maggie Sullivan is the only freshman on the team this year. She has a fresh perspective when it comes to the team. “It’s really hard, but I think it works out really well. We practice a lot of passing and shooting drills and we don’t do a lot of conditioning. I think it really reflects ourselves in the games” she said.

Sullivan feels they will make it all the way to the finals at the state tournaments. In recent years the team has been defeated by Rutherford, but the tables were turned during Rutherford’s defeat this year, at one of their battles during county tournaments. Sullivan felt that this victory was a big one for the team, seeing as how Rutherford was predicted to win the league.

“It was kind of scary at first, but everyone is so nice and helpful to me so I feel really comfortable with them now.”

Principal Arlotta feels the team is well balanced. He said that “they don’t have one dominant scorer” and “the team is more well rounded.” A few of the teams scores from games this year are a 0-1 recent loss against Ridgewood, a 3- 2 victory against paramus and an immense 8-0 win against Dumont. The coach says that the team’s best plays and key moments always come from the team working together.