Monroe riding high as GMC Tournament nears

For the Monroe High School girls soccer team, the 2013 season has been all about believing that anything is possible.

With the Greater Middlesex Conference Tournament less than a week away, the Falcons are playing some of the best soccer in the league, as evidenced by their victory over then-unbeaten East Brunswick last week.

Until Monday (when South Brunswick beat East Brunswick), Monroe was the only team to stay with the Bears for an entire match, and they’ve done it not once, but twice. The two teams tied on Sept. 19 and Monroe edged the Bears 2-1 last Thursday.

“I think we went in there saying we know they’ve very talented, and they might have the upper hand, but our philosophy is to play as a team,” head coach Kathy Dillon said. “We played relentlessly. It’s a constant barrage when you play East Brunswick and they’re skilled moving up the field, but the kids got very pumped up and they were at the point where we believed in ourselves and we knew we can beat any team.”

Part of the recipe for success for Monroe this season has been their balance on the score-sheet. Through Tuesday, 10 different players had scored at least one goal and seven of those players also have recorded at least one assist. In year two as a member of the Red Division, Dillon believes her squad is playing they way they’re built to.

“It’s a big step up from the White to the Red; you don’t get a break in the Red,” she said. “I think we’ve gotten to a point where we’re comfortable with each other and it’s comforting. We do have some talented players and it’s all about us stepping up and playing as a group. We do count on kids coming off the bench to score; they sit there and study the game as it’s happening and when they come in, they’re hard-nose and they run through anything.”

Dillon credits her seniors, most notably Taylor Evanchik and Demi Rousseau, for helping instill the confidence in the younger players this season.

“Taylor and Demi are the captains of this team and they’re all about the team doing well; it’s not about them, it’s about the team. The seniors deserve a lot of credit in getting the younger kids to believe in themselves and believing that anything is possible.”

Vikings rolling

South Brunswick, following in Monroe’s footsteps, became the second team to topple East Brunswick, doing so in convincing fashion on Monday afternoon, 2-0. The Vikings have now won six of their last seven games, with victories over Monroe and East Brunswick to boot. Beth Barrio’s bunch has yielded just five goals in those seven contests and with the Greater Middlesex Conference Tournament rapidly approaching, South Brunswick is playing its best soccer at the right time.

Blue champions

Metuchen became the first school to wrap up a divisional crown when they edged Carteret 3-1 Monday afternoon. The Bulldogs (15-0) are the lone unbeaten team in the conference, behind a balanced scoring attack and outstanding goalkeeping.

Seeding meeting

The Home News Tribune will be live at the GMCT seeding meeting on Friday morning. A full listing of the seeds will be posted on the Corner Kicks blog at http://blogs.mycentral jersey.com/soccer

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