After years of playing together, seven young soccer players signed their letters of intent together on Wednesday making them one of largest groups Hartland High School varsity soccer coach Andrew Kartsounes says he has seen in his years coaching.
“I’m not sure we’ve had seven total in the years I’ve been around that have gone to the next level,” he said. “Just the number of them and the dedication to the sport is just fantastic.”
During the letter signings, Hartland Athletic Director Jason Reck told the audience of family members that the seven young women had "made Hartland a better place."
It was an exciting moment for the group of teammates and friends who began playing together eight years ago on their first travel soccer team.
Positive attitudes, work ethic and a team bond are just some of the reasons the girls say they have been successful over the years and many of them hope to leave behind a large legacy by winning districts for the first time in school history.
“Win districts for sure,” senior Michelle Rollins said. “We still want to keep playing and giving it our all because it actually means a lot to us to win.”
After losing their district game to Okemos last season, Kartsounes says he also hopes to see the team return to where they left off last year.
“We had a pretty solid season last year, we just came up a little short in districts,” he said. “We lost 1-0 in the last couple minutes to Okemos who won the state championship, so we certainly would like to be in that same position to win games at the end of the season that would move us into that kind of contention.”
As the talented group prepares for their final high school season together many of the players say they are excited to be playing in Hartland, surrounded by friends and classmates who come out to support the team and cheer them on.
“The atmosphere of playing in front of the kids you actually know,” Kaylee Washburn said. “It’s fun to play in front of your hometown.”
The Hartland seniors who signed their letter of intent include:
- Chalynne McNitt- Ball State University
- Julie DeBus- Alma University
- Amanda Pizana- Columbia College in South Carolina
- Hannah Hasbrouck- Schoolcraft College
- Michelle Rollins- Eastern Michigan University
- Rachel Washburn- Eastern Michigan University
- Kaylee Phillips- Michigan State University