Lady Coyotes Clinch First Region Championship Since 2016

Girls soccer finishes region play undefeated as they look to advance into the state playoffs.


Kylie Millican

Advancing the ball upfield against Apache Junction is junior Taylor Beckstrom. She led the team with 4 points on the night scoring a goal and assisting on two others.

Jasmine Giomi, Director of Staff Relations

After a third consecutive shutout win, the girls varsity soccer team clinched their first 4A-Black Canyon region championship since 2016. 

The Lady Coyotes dominated the Coronado Dons, 8-0 in their final match of the regular season. Senior Ava Armstrong ran circles around the Dons defense while recording 11 points with 4 goals and 3 assists. 

The girls soccer team is firing on all cylinders in recent weeks. They’ve outscored their last six opponents 41-6 and Monday night’s win was their second “mercy rule” victory in their last three matches.

“It feels great, exciting mercying two teams and we’re ready for the playoffs,” senior captain Armstrong said.

The Coronado win ensured them a spot in the play-in round of the state tournament. It’s an exciting moment for the girls, but the team’s success and playoff berth has freshman defensive player Abby Rice overwhelmed with joy.

“This team is the most fun I have had in my life and I feel pretty good and really pumped about going to the playoffs,” Rice said.

Third-year head coach Cassie Olsen is proud of the growth she’s seen in her team since she was handed the coaches whistle.

“It’s always tough taking over a program and trying to make it yours,” Olsen said, “These girls this year have shown me they’re willing to listen and play the way they need to to be where they are now.” 

Senior and team defensive captain Ashlynn Shields sees the improvement in her team as well. 

“It’s a big difference from freshman year, we have all grown,” Shields said, “A Lot of us have been together since middle school so I feel like the chemistry is better.”

The 16-seed Coyotes will host the 17-seed Seton Catholic at 3 p.m. for a shot at a state playoff berth. Look for Armstrong and junior Taylor Beckstrom to lead the offensive attack against the Sentinels. They lead the team in goals with 19 and 13 respectively. Senior goalie Brooklynn Larson has been keeping the net empty lately having not surrendered a goal in the last three games.