Soccer teams prepare for play in ‘tough’ district

By Sunnie R. Clahchischiligi
Navajo Times

FRUITLAND, N.M., Aug. 21, 2014

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(Times photo – Sunnie R. Clahchischiligi)

Navajo Prep head soccer coach Stacy Irwin separates his players into two teams for a practice scrimmage.

The word “tough” might be an understatement when it comes to District 1-4A/A girls’ soccer.

Navajo Prep will need to figure out where they fit in. They are new to much of the competition in the district.

Navajo Prep head coach Stacy Irwin said he knows it will be tough but his team is hopeful to be competitive.

“Their goal is to make the first round of the playoffs,” he said. “What we’re going to have to do is go in each game, push and not give up until the whistle blows."

Irwin said changes in scoring have made their chances at obtaining that ultimate goal realistic. It is now three points for a win, one point for a tie and none for a loss.

The Navajo Prep soccer program is in its fourth season and many of the seasoned players will play a key role in the highly competitive district.

Irwin said the return of Taryn Yazzie, Samantha Dennison, Brittany Arviso and Michelle Johnson, who were on the Navajo Times All-Star list last season, has made them a solid defensive team. But this season they’ll concentrate on other concepts.

“The experience is in the defense and in the midfield … the way the girls are meshing, they’re starting to get it. I think that’s also going to be one of our strengths,” he said. “This year I hope to make more offensive scores.”

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