Hurricanes To Count On Fresh Faces In OIA Girls Soccer Play

Should the 2015 girls state soccer champion come out of the OIA West, few will be surprised, including longtime Kapolei head coach Brian Beck.

“Everyone is getting talent now, which is great to see,” said Beck, whose Hurricanes officially begin preseason workouts camp next week. “I’ve always been hoping that we would continue to do well and that the other schools in our league would as well to help us all in getting ready for the state tournament.

“You still have Mililani and Pearl City,” he added, “but every single game is big. Last year every game between every team was amazing.”

The OIA West’s strength showed itself well at the Division I soccer championships last February, highlighted by Aiea’s riveting run to the title game.

Na Ali’i, which finished as runner-up to an undefeated Kamehameha team, was one of three West teams to make the semifinals of the state tournament, joining Kapolei (third) and Mililani (fourth).

Not to be outdone, Pearl City also qualified for states, having won the OIA Red tournament the week before with four straight wins over Kahuku, Campbell, Castle and Kaiser.

Beck will have an interesting mix of veterans and talented newcomers in his lineup this season.

Back in the fold are seniors Shandy Hopeau (defender), Kelli Fryxell (midfielder), Eden Ines (mid-fielder) and Bianca Gonzales (forward).

Elsewhere, some fresh faces will be asked to contribute early on.

“We’ll have a really old team, and we’ll have a really young team,” said Beck, whose Hurricanes were the West champion last season along with Campbell. “I’m really excited for our young talent. Most years you have one or two (who are ready for varsity level soccer). This year, we have four or five who will challenge for starting spots.

“We’ve probably had the best preseason conditioning (sessions) that we’ve ever had.”

Kapolei also boasts sophomore midfielder Alyssa Yoshida, who burst onto the scene like a meteor last season with a team-leading 10 goals as a freshman.

“This year is going to be real exciting for her,” Beck said.

“She was on fire through the OIA last year, but she didn’t have a great showing at states. She felt like she could have been the difference, and she was irritated that she wasn’t. It will be up to me to get her into a position where she can get the ball.”

Developing leadership will be a prevailing theme for Kapolei.

“We lost so many quality players and senior leadership from last year,” Beck said. “We didn’t name a captain because all of the seniors did such a good job of patrolling the team.”