Panthers hold their own against defending state champ Cheyenne Mountain

Woodland Park girls’ soccer team lost 8-0 in first round of state playoffs

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It was David vs. Goliath on the Cheyenne Mountain soccer field on May 7. And while Goliath won this match, David walked away with his head held high.

In simpler terms, the Woodland Park girls’ soccer team held its own against the defending state champions in a Class 4A first-round game.

“We hung with them,” said Woodland Park coach Andrew Pappadakis. “This is the best game our girls have played all season. No one had a bad game. They played whistle to whistle.”

The Panthers (9-7) were on the short end of an 8-0 score, but the game went the full 80 minutes. Woodland Park, the No. 32 seed in the 32-team tournament, held No. 1 Cheyenne Mountain (14-0-2) to five goals in the first half while the Indians played all of their starters.

“We spent two days at practice knowing we had Cheyenne and working on the things they do,” Pappadakis said. “Everything they did we practiced first. There were no surprises.”

Woodland Park had few scoring opportunities and no shots on goal. Despite being down early - Cheyenne Mountain scored 32 seconds into the match — the Panthers kept their focus on defense and made the Indians work the ball around before getting a decent shot.

The Panthers’ defense included Jenny Sells, Cheyenne Wilcox, Caitlin Thorne, Jayne Welch and Laura Mauricio.

Pappadakis was especially proud of his two goaltenders; sophomore Samantha Self (who played the first half) and senior Becky Seib (who played all of the second half)

“Both goalies came up huge with some really wonderful saves,” he said.

All of Cheyenne Mountain’s players are involved in a club program, while just a few of Woodland Park’s players travel down Ute Pass to play on a club team.

“That makes a difference,” Pappadakis said.

Woodland Park enjoyed a successful all-around season, despite losing several players to injury; junior Katie Stunkard, freshman Lexi Rees and senior Michaele McDonough to name a few.

The Panthers should return a solid group of players for the 2015 season, led by Sells (15 goals, 9 assists), Morghan Sieracki (11, 8), Thorne (4, 1), Self, Wilcox, Welch and freshman Amelia Stein.

With Rees and Stunkard healthy next season there’s appears to be no reason why Woodland Park should not compete for a league title and a third-consecutive playoff appearance.

The revamped Metro League will include newcomers Canon City and traditional 3A state-power The Classical Academy.

“I think we can win league next year,” Pappadakis said. “I think we can beat TCA.

“But the girls have to commit. They have to play in the summer. If we do that we will win league and we will get a higher seed than 25, which is what Mesa Ridge got this year for winning our league.”

Woodland Park was the third-place team from the Metro League this season. League champ Mesa Ridge and second-place Coronado both lost their first-round playoff games.

Comments

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jackojimbo

We have to be realistic here, the only reason the Panthers made the tournament was because of CHSAA's league qualifying formula. Woodland was walloped by Falcon 10 -0; Falcon was one of the only two Pikes Peak League Teams that did not go to the playoffs.

Anyone who can spin a 8 -0 loss into a victory has a future in politics.

When a coach says his team could be better if they played for a different team and coach in the off season -- there are a lot of flags there.

You build a program by enticing players to start out as freshman and continue to senior; then continue the cycle. Players can develop without high cost/time consuming club ball - by just using the ball all year round - and running all year round. Its soccer - the most popular and simplest sport in the world.

Just another soccer fan

Wednesday, May 14, 2014 | Report this
msreality

Hey there Jackojimbo. My comments are for you. I think Coach Pappadakasis' comments regarding play club are realistic and your ignorance is too. Cheyenne Mountain girls all play club level ball, as well as Broomfield, Pine Creek, Air Academy to name a few. The high school program does not begin at freshman level it begins as small children, for any sport played in high school these days. The schools I have mentioned above have national team club players moving the ball for them. A school district whose parents refuse to make the financial or time consuming sacrifice of getting their kids into club level ball or a club level sport will continue to see their kids suffer 8-0 losses well into the future. As for Mr. Pappadakis he has tried to do this in the Woodland Park Community in the past --to get kids out of park and rec and get them into club ball. Mr. P did not ask for a dime in doing so. He waived all of his coaching fees to get kids out and into the club arena because that is where is true hard soccer is played and college scholarships are earned. Parents of this community that think they can have successful high school programs because their kids played park and rec are foolish and ignorant to the reality of the situation. My daughter was part of a club program that Mr. P started up here and it lasted for almost 4 years. My daughter's team played without subs since the time they were 8-9 years old because we could not get enough kids or parents to commit to playing club level ball, thus that is the reason for 8-0 losses against schools were their players have been playing year round soccer at a club level for years. As for soccer being one of the easiest sports around...I ask you this....why is what one of those lowest scoring games out there...because it takes tremendous dedication, tremendous teamwork and tremendous skill of both speed, mental development, and technical grace. Wake up Jackojimbo and all others in this community with this mentality and start investigating schools like CMHS and others and what it takes to build a great program...it begins well before freshman year!

Saturday, May 24, 2014 | Report this
msreality

And one more item Jackojimbo as a parent I take all of those comments that Mr. P says in the above article that are comments used to build are kids up not tear them down. I think those are positive comments to keep our kids together and to keep them working hard.

Saturday, May 24, 2014 | Report this