PEORIA, Ill. (WMBD/WYZZ) — Not that the Irish are looking ahead…
But the Notre Dame girls soccer team can hardly wait for the postseason to start next week.
“We feel really confident because we have been playing together our whole lives,” said senior goal keeper Addie Jennetten. “We decided after last year that we wanted some things to change. And we are just ready.”
Last year, Dunlap upended Notre Dame in the sectional championship, denying the Irish a trip to the state’s Elite 8. This year they’d like to get to state.
Jennetten, who has 11 shutouts on the season, is one of six seniors on the team. But the Irish have been getting contributions up and down the roster.
“We have some juniors that have started for a couple of years now,:” said coach Ben Ralph. “A couple freshmen have really stepped up and scored some goals for us this year. We are jelling as the season goes on.”
Ralph won his 100th career game at Notre Dame when his Irish clinched the outright Big 12 title by blanking Bloomington, 8-0, on Tuesday. PND (13-3-1) has a showdown with Rochester (16-3-1) on Wednesday.
After taking a year off to to central on basketball, junior Mya Wardle has returned to the Irish and given the team an offensive pop with ten goals and ten assists in 13 games.
“I missed that competition aspect of soccer. It’s a different type of competition. It’s really special, it’s what makes this sport really fun,” Wardle said. “That was the main reason why I came back to beat these schools. This is why I came back, to make it to state with this team. I think that is something that is just so special. You only get to do it once in your lifetime.”
Notre Dame plays host Orion in the class 2A regionals next week.