Dominating district competition helped the Lady Pioneers rack up individual awards.
Seven Warren County soccer players were recognized this week for their play this year, including sophomore Katie Toney taking home the district’s top honor. Toney was named the District 6AAA MVP a season after winning rookie of the year.
Toney passed the torch to teammate Bekah Jackson, who was named the District 6AAA rookie of the year this season.
Seniors Samantha Ramsey and Savannah Cox were named first-team all-district, as was sophomore Natalie Stepien.
Seniors Makenna Mason and Sarai Ruiz were selected on the second team.
Toney has been a thorn in the sides of district opponents since arriving at WCHS. A 19-goal scorer last year, Toney has already netted a team-leading 22 goals this season with two games left in the regular season.
The sophomore probably could have padded her scoring numbers, but she’s always looking for open teammates. She also leads the team with 11 assists.
Jackson ranks second in both goals and assists, scoring 12 goals and handing out nine helpers in her first season with the Lady Pioneers.
The 1-2 punch helped the Lady Pioneers to a 9-4-2 mark overall (not counting Tuesday’s senior night against Cannon County, which wasn’t completed at press time) and 3-1 record in district games.
“I was very excited for both Katie and Bekah. I thought they were both very deserving of the honor,” said coach Todd Willmore. “I felt they had a great opportunity to win an individual district award, but it was very encouraging to have the other district coaches agree as well. I was proud of all the girls who were recognized.”
Ramsey has been a reliable offensive weapon as well this year, scoring five goals and dishing out two assists. The senior was at her best in a huge home win over Cookeville, scoring a pivotal second-half goal in a 3-0 victory.
The rest of the Lady Pioneers honored have been vital to a stifling defense.
Cox, who also has one goal and one assist, has been one of the district’s top defenders for three seasons. Stepien stepped into the starting lineup as a freshman last year and hasn’t let go since, helping her team record five shutouts this season.
Mason was in the goal for all five shutouts, three of which came against district foes. Just a season ago, Mason was named all-district for her play in the midfield and as a scoring option for the Lady Pioneers. This season, Willmore asked one of his senior leaders to step into the net and Mason responded with a handful of shutouts.
Ruiz joins Stepien and Cox on the back line of the defense, which allowed just two goals in district games. Ruiz also has four goals this season.
Warren County will play its final regular season game Thursday at DeKalb County before beginning the district tournament next Tuesday, Oct. 15 at home against Cookeville. Next week’s district semifinal matchup will begin at 6 p.m. The winner will move into the finals and receive a region bid.
All seven Lady Pioneers will be recognized for their accomplishments at the district finals set to be played next week.