Sydney Conway doesn’t know exactly what she’s going to do after she graduates Oswego East later this year, but the senior knows the importance of moving forward.
That’s exactly what the Wolves will try to do this spring as they put last year’s 7-14-1 season behind them and start anew.
“[The month of] May is what it all comes down to,” Conway said. “We’re kind of looking at the long run and taking it game by game. We can’t dwell on last year or if we lose a game and don’t get the outcome we wanted. We have to learn from it and prepare for what’s next.”
Conway may play in college, but she’s still figuring that out. Right now, her focus is on leading a young pack of Wolves.
“I really think we’ll come out and do really well this season,” Conway said. “We’ve got some outstanding new freshmen and we get to start with a new clean sheet. We’re all on the same page, we’re all close this year and we have a lot of great talent, especially in the midfield.”
Juniors Allison Adams (one goal, one assist), Madison Frazer (one goal, two assists) and Haley Lewis (nine goals, one assist) are all returning all-conference players and Adams, who will anchor the backline. is an all-sectional selection from a year ago. Frazer and Lewis will control the midfield while Conway (four goals, four assists) is a force in the midfield and at forward.
“Our midfield is our biggest strength,” Wolves coach Juan Leal said. “We are heavy with talented midfielders with great distribution and possession. Our midfield has a strong support with our defense that is capable of getting teams offside because of their excellent communication.”
One luxury that the Wolves are blessed with is having a durable veteran who has seen quite her share of battles in net as Reagan Sanders, a fourth-year player, returns.
Of course, if the talented midfield does its job, and it could feature freshmen Taylor English and Mikayla Lambert, then the threats directed toward Sanders should be minimalized.
“We have a lot of talent in the midfield and will be able to distribute the ball well and keep it away from our opponent,” Leal said. “Our defense has experience together and is looking forward to keeping their line together to keep teams offside.”
The Wolves feel comfortable on the attack with a combination of speed and finishing instincts from its forwards. A new one to watch is freshman Chloe Noon.
With four games scheduled for March before heading down to St. Louis for a tournament at the end of the month, the Wolves will look for a strong start. But even if the results aren’t stellar, they’ll use the experience as an opportunity to get better.
The Wolves also will play in the Naperville Invitational, which is arguably the most competitive tournament in the state, in April.
“Our schedule has always been difficult with some powerhouse teams at the beginning like Downers Grove South and Wheaton Warrenville South,” Conway said. “It could throw us off a little bit at the beginning, but we just need to stay strong and focus on each game and remember it’s a long season.”