By Chris Chaney
Injuries are a part of sports and with the new-aged concern about concussions both in football as well as in soccer, the Williamsburg girls’ soccer team has had to overcome some adversity stemming from those types of injuries as they wind down their 2012 season.
“It’s definitely been a trying season due to the injuries that we’ve had,” head coach Tim Swart said. “I think we’ve had three or four concussions and different things that have made for a rough year with injuries.
“We’ve played a couple of games with 11 kids, probably three or four with only 12, so subs have been a rarity.”
The Lady Wildcats are a relatively young team with only three seniors on the roster. Currently sitting at 5-7-1 overall and 3-4-1 in the Southern Buckeye Conference National Division, Williamsburg stands in the middle of the division, tied for third place with Blanchester. First-place Batavia may be out of reach with their 8-0 record in conference, but with two games remaining on the schedule and both in conference, the Lady Wildcats could jump to as high as second place if they get some help from Clermont Northeastern.
A slow start put the Lady Wildcats behind the 8-ball, dropping their first two games to Georgetown and CNE, respectively. Not only did that put Williamsburg at 0-2 on the year, but also in conference. However, Williamsburg did rebound well, winning three in row after the 0-2 start.
But again, with injuries starting to take their toll, the Wildcats went on a four-game losing streak through the middle of their schedule.
As players have started to return from their injuries over the past two weeks, the team has managed to go 2-1-1 during that stretch, ending with a tough 0-1 loss to Batavia and drawing with CNE, 2-2, on Oct. 4.
Of those injured, Coach Swart said that Rebekah Garrett, a senior midfielder, and Miranda Wiedemann, a freshman forward, and Caley Pringle, a junior midfielder, have all suffered concussions.
“They are very mild concussions, but still to the point where we don’t want to take any chances with the kids,” Swart said.
Emma Imbus has been having reoccurring problems with her feet, Swart explained. If she ever gets stepped on, the coaching staff has to move her in and out, making playing time an issue. She also has a partial tear of her labrum in her shoulder. Pringle also suffered a shoulder injury earlier in the season, which took her out of commission for two to three weeks while they tried to figure out just what was wrong with the shoulder.
Unfortunately for the Lady Wildcats, these injuries are taking place during the same time causing some depth problems for the team.
“You can tell in a couple of games playing with 11 kids and two or three playing with 12, it’s been a difficult run,” the coach said. “We did well even when we had the lower numbers. We’re staying in the matches, but it’s just been tough for us.”
The injuries have been ongoing and just when it seemed like everyone was starting to come back, more players would go down with injuries.
Now coming down the home stretch of the season, Williamsburg begins their final assault on the National Division with back-to-back games to finish things off.
“We’re confident that coming down the stretch with our kids coming back that we’ll be competitive in the rest of the matches,” Swart said. “As long as we stay healthy, we should have no problem being competitive.
“We’re hoping to be able to finish out at the very minimum .500 on the season overall.”