Orion-Sherrard has turnaround season

Kayci Woodley

Every team works to build a legacy, and according to head coach Rick Cline, the Orion-Sherrard 2009 girls soccer team built one of its own. 

With 11 seniors and four going on to continue their soccer careers in college, Cline couldn’t be prouder of the Charger season this year.

The Orion-Sherrard varsity squad finished with a record of 12-5-2. That mark ties the record for most wins in school history, and the squad wrapped up the season with the lowest number of losses in the program’s history.

“I think that you work hard to build a legacy and they did that,” Cline said.

When Cline began four years ago as head coach, his 2006 team allowed 82 goals to opponents and scored just 17 the entire season. This year Orion-Sherrard scored 60 goals and only allowed 13. Talk about a turnaround.

The varsity team finished with five losses by a total of five goals. Orion-Sherrard didn’t allow any opponents to score more than two goals against them.

The season started off with a solid shutout win over Peoria Woodruff 6-0. 

The next game was the first of just five losses for Orion-Sherrard, but to the Chargers it didn’t exactly feel like one.

Losing to Pekin 2-1 in the second game of the season was actually a highlight for the girls’ team, according to coach Cline. Pekin has always been a well-developed, competitive squad, and for the O-S Chargers to lose by such a narrow margin was an improvement.

In both the Galesburg and Dixon matches, Orion-Sherrard wasn’t able to come out on top, but the O-S Chargers out-shot both teams on the stat sheet and ended up with a tie against the Silver Streaks and a one-goal to Dixon.

The interesting point about the Dixon game was that the Duchesses had only four shots on goal the entire game, but luck was on their side that night. The one shot that landed in the back of the net was enough to hand Orion-Sherrard the 1-0 loss.

In the Orion Tournament, the squad finished with wins in two of three games and three players on the All-Tournament team. The honored Chargers were Avery Kool, Ali Seys and Kourtni Barnes.

Another major highlight for the Chargers came near the end of the season when Orion-Sherrard overcame the Illinois Valley Central Grey Ghosts in a 1-0 victory.

“In the IVC game we played the best we ever have as a team,” Cline said. “I was glad we peaked at the right time.”

The season ended for the O-S Chargers after a tough 2-1 loss to Alleman in the first round of the Geneseo Regional.

Orion-Sherrard had countless chances in the second half to the change the game, but couldn’t seem to finish when they needed it the most. 

Although this year’s team may have had the best chance to finally beat the Pioneers, coach Cline was still satisfied with the overall results of the season and the work ethic of the players on the 2009 squad.