ROCK SPRINGS – After a magnificent season, the Rock Springs High School girls soccer team saw 10 of its players who voted onto the 2019 all-conference team.
Rock Springs not only had the best season in program history in 2019, but the Tigers placed third at the state tournament after finishing the year with a record of 20-1.
At the top of the list, RSHS sophomore goalkeeper Alex Moeller is the first name listed for the Tigers. Moeller not only held her own in net for the Tigers, but out of 1,500 minutes played, she only let six goals get past her.
“She wasn’t tested a whole lot early in the season, but come time for the state tournament, she really stepped up her game,” RSHS head coach Stephen Pyer said.
Moeller still has two years left in a Tigers uniform and will be a huge asset for the team moving forward.
On the defensive side of the ball, Kia Comstock highlights the list. The senior captain closed out her final year with the Tigers with three goals and eight assists.
“Kia was our left back this year and she was one of the most offensive-minded defenders in the entire state,” Pyer said. “She made big runs up the sidelines and sparked so many plays on offense for us.”
Pyer said one of Comstock’s best qualities is her ability to lead.
“She did a great job helping out her teammates and set a great example on and off the field,” the coach said.
The senior provided a tremendous amount of leadership on the back line, and the experience she brings to the table will be deeply missed. Between her speed and ability to read the ball, Comstock has been a shutdown defender all four years of her high school career.
Another defender earning all-conference honors is Rylee Berry. The junior played a huge role for the Tigers this year at the center back position and did a great job keeping the line disciplined.
“Rylee is our anchor,” Pyer said. “She’s the glue that holds the defense together and she doesn't let much get behind her. I like to think of her as our bruiser. She plays very physical and isn't afraid to go up and compete for loose balls."
The final defender from Rock Springs to receive this prestigious honor is Amrey Willoughby. The sophomore played right back for the Tigers and has many skills.
“Amrey’s best quality is her ability to step. She can read the ball well and can see the play develop before it even happens,” Pyer said. “She has been another solid defender that I know I can count on."
Highlighting the list at the midfield position is RSHS junior Alyssa Bedard. All season long, Bedard proved to be a threat every time she had the ball at her feet.
In 21 games played, she scored 34 goals and added 16 assists, leading the team in both categories.
“Alyssa is a phenomenal player and a gifted athlete,” Pyer said. “Her ability to score and come up with big plays is what makes her so dangerous. All I can really say about her is that she has a very bright future ahead of her.”
Bedard not only led the team in goals scored, but for the second-straight year now, she has led the entire 4A conference in goals scored.
The second midfielder to be named to the list is RSHS senior Liliana Hernandez. From week one, Hernandez immediately stood out. Her ability to control the middle of the field and make precise passes is what made her so successful this season. In her final year, the senior tallied five goals and 10 assists for the Tigers.
“Liliana’s best strength is her footwork,” Pyer said. “She possesses the ball well and she doesn’t give up many turnovers. She was always looking to make a big play and overtime has turned into a true soccer player.”
Olivia Politi is another midfielder to earn all-conference. As a sophomore, Politi scored four goals and had seven assists for the Tigers.
“Olivia’s best quality is her ability to run,” Pyer said. “She’s always running, whether it’s toward the net or coming back to help the defense … she’s nonstop.”
Pyer also praised Politi’s strong play on the left side of the field when combined with Comstock.
“Between those two players, they owned the left channel all season long,” he said. “They worked extremely well together and were both a huge part of our offensive success.”
Another young player to receive this high honor is RSHS freshman Emily Taucher. As a forward, Taucher was second on the team in both scoring and assists. In 21 games, she racked up 17 goals and had 14 assists for the Tigers.
“Emily plays a solid game,” Pyer said. “She’s got great touch, speed and size. I can plug on her in anywhere on the field, so she is very versatile. How she plays the game, not many people would think she’s only a freshman.”
The second forward making it onto the list is Novaleigh Moses. As a freshman this year, Moses played great soccer. She finished third on the team in scoring with 10 goals and added five assists.
“The thing about Novaleigh is that she is very knowledgeable,” Pyer said. “She’s got great touch and controls the ball well. All year long, she shot the ball well and she is another one of our young players that has a bright future ahead of her.”
Pyer noted the freshman is so great is because she never stops playing. Whenever Moses has free time, she is always practicing and trying to get better.
The final player from Rock Springs to receive all-conference is RSHS freshman Brecken Hunsaker. Hunsaker tallied nine goals and finished third on the team in assists with 11.
“I referred to Brecken as our bully,” Pyer said. “She goes to every loose ball and isn't afraid to draw contact. Brecken plays big and she's usually right in the middle of almost every play."
Pyer is sad to see his seniors go, but the future of the Tigers program remains extremely bright.
“It’s kind of crazy,” Pyer said. “We are still a very young team and will be returning a ton of talent. We are going to be a threat for many years.”
Another positive note for Pyer and the coaching staff is that out of the 26 players to receive all-conference, his players made up most of the list with 10. Coming in second was Kelly Walsh High School with eight players.
“It’s great to have so many deserving players get noticed for all of their hard work,” Pyer said. “With the season we had, it feels like we should have had a lot more names on that list.”