Gielczyk: Roscommon in Rebuilding Mode for 2019

With 12 players gone from last year’s team that finished 9-6 and won a district title, the Roscommon girls soccer team is in a rebuilding frame of mind this season.

The Bucks scored 10 more goals than they allowed their opposition last year, 42-32, and while they fell short of winning the Northern Michigan Soccer League championship, they won the even bigger prize of a district title and had some hardware to put in the trophy case. Roscommon lost in the regional tournament.

Although the Bucks might be looking for some offensive punch, the defense is bolstered by the return of sophomore Raven Lewandowski in goal and seniors Ashley DeSmith, Lindsay Lewandowski and Kaitlyn Seames handling the defensive chores in front of her.

The rest of the team is made up of sophomores and freshmen, which doesn’t typically fill anyone with optimism. It is a common coaches refrain that youth makes mistakes.

But, there are always surprises.

If the weather cooperates, and the younger players gain experience … and confidence along with that … Roscommon might just be more of a threat than anyone thinks right now.

Some of the key new people include sophomores Raynee Thornthon, Chloe Lyons and Maya Pisos who all are penciled in to fill spots in the back of the defense.

The midfield, though, is perhaps the most important area. It is the midfielders who transition the defense to offense, and the Bucks look to have some experience there with seniors Peyton Church, Abbie Harrison and Katie Murray all returning.

But the rest of the midfielders are all young, and coach John Sinnaeve hopes they can learn the ropes quickly to give the Bucks some capable reserve strength.

That includes sophomores Autumn Jobson, Veronica Alyas and Bruna Casagrande and freshmen Aydan Dalak, Kate Murry, Megan Dunnen, Ruby Galloway and Valerie Alyas.

Roscommon has strength on offense with the return of senior Marrissa Janisse and junior Clara Brewer. Sinnave also sees potential for some scoring from freshman Lydia Mckay.

DeSmith, Lindsay Lewandowski, Janisse and Church were all named all-district last year.

“We will need to practice every day with the mindset that we will and can improve,” Sinnaeve said. “We are still looking to compete for the league title, and return to regionals.”

Greg Gielczyk is an award-winning sports columnist and sportwriter who worked a total 36 years — interrupted for an 18-month period from 1997-99 — at the Manistee News Advocate as sports editor until 2006 and is now retired. He currently is a freelance sportswriter for the Ludington Daily News. Gielczyk can be reached at for story ideas. 

Categories: Girls Soccer