Coach Bert Anderson and his New Albany Lady Bulldog Soccer team made it to the 4A State Championship before losing to Stone 4-0.
Anderson shared some of the major things that the Lady Bulldogs worked on during June's summer practices and scrimmages.
"We not only lost a lot of production from Jo (Pittman), Caroline (King) and the other seniors but we lost a lot of our leadership on the field," Anderson said. "So we really emphasized every time we stepped on the field to either practice or play games we all needed to work to be better than we were the day before because it's going to take a team effort to keep our program where it is now and not fall off any.
"It was a long 4-5 weeks of not only battling the heat but also a very competitive summer schedule but I can honestly say the last day of the summer games was the best we had played as a team."
Part of the summer schedule also involved camp for many of the New Albany players and Anderson addressed the importance of that.
I was very excited for camp this year because for the first time we had all returning players attend camp," he said. "Being able to have four days of camp with training from college coaches and being able to scrimmage other schools is always a plus. It was good to have all the girls together with nothing but soccer to think about all day and night."
The activities of June were extremely important to Anderson's younger players since many were getting actual on the field time to develop their game.
"The seniors that graduated were over 3/4 of our offense and the anchor of our defense," Anderson said. "We have several options to be able to fill those gaps but it will have to be from several girls stepping up and filling those voids.
"The girls have to be willing to step up and get out of their comfort zone but we have several that are capable of doing it. They just have to be confident in themselves to be able to do it for the team."
Anderson talked about key players that will be returning that he will be looking to for major contributions on and off the field in leadership roles.
"Lucy (King) will need to continue to improve as she has every year but we are expecting her to play a bigger role for us to really solidify the back line and give us as many clean sheets as possible to keep us in every game."