Back to Back Task: Lady Raiders try and repeat as state champs - WGEM.com: Quincy News, Weather, Sports, and Radio

Back to Back Task: Lady Raiders try and repeat as state champs

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QND head coach Mark Longo is in search of quick growth for his younger players especially in the mid-field. QND head coach Mark Longo is in search of quick growth for his younger players especially in the mid-field.

QUINCY, Ill. (WGEM) -- How do you follow up a perfect 28-0 season which was capped off with a state championship?

You try to repeat recent history.

That's what the Quincy Notre Dame girls soccer team is in search of.

The Lady Raiders are hard at work getting set for a season that just doesn't want to start. Saturday's trip to Macomb has already been postponed, meaning next Tuesday's game at Helias could be QND's only dress rehearsal prior to an April 2 showdown against Quincy High.

No matter who the opponent is and no matter when the game is played, the Lady Raiders say they'll be ready.

"I think right now they're pretty focused," head coach Mark Longo said. 

"I wish we could get outside more and practice but it's an experienced group, although we'll have some freshman and sophomores that will be stepping in to play a big role for us."

Junior forward Cassidy Foley says preparation is key.

"We're just going to come out everyday and play our game. We have a lot of young girls coming up and they're going to have to step up," Foley indicated. 

"We have three seniors so they're going to have to be leaders on the team but I'm looking forward to this year."

QND has star power up front thanks to the return of forwards Cassidy Foley and Jordan Frericks, and a defense that posted 20 shutouts a year ago.

But graduation hit hard in the middle which means a new batch of players will have to take over.

"I wouldn't say that we're worried about mid-field, but mid-field is something (Coach) Longo has been thinking about more than usual," senior defender Adriel Markway said. "Our whole mid-field basically graduated."

Longo says they will handle the missing pieces by committee.

"Abby Grawe really is the only one back from last year. Kari Ann Steinbrecher stepped up from stopper to play a little center (mid-field) so we have a few (returning players) but we like to rotate four, five, or six kids in there," Longo explained. 

"We've got a few inexperienced (players) but I think we'll be OK there."

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