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After a grueling 6-12-3 season in 2013, the Lady Knights are preparing to go into battle with their new Coach Derek Cissell.
With their sights set high, the Lady Knights plan to take the district tournament as one of their goals this year.
“Every year that’s our number one goal,” Cissell said.
And, according to him, it’s obtainable.
Last year, the Lady Knights took one of two games in the district tournament before advancing to and falling in the first round of the regional tournament.
“We play some stiff competition, but I’m hoping they’re ready to step up to the challenge and compete,” Cissell said.
Though the team has nine seniors, they lost a lot of power when Marion County High School graduated forwards Miranda Bradshaw and Colleen Rakes, along with midfielders Lindsey Browning, Madison Essex and Bailey Spalding.
Returning this year are senior midfielders Cresheona Burton, Danielle Carrico, Frances Riggs, Bethany Spalding, Sara Tucker and Heather Williams. Also returning are defenders Casey Sowers and Cameron Caldwell.
Though last year’s leading player Noel Obata is listed on the roster, she’s not expected to play this season due a lingering injury.
Cissell said he expects all of the returning players to be top performers on the team.
The Lady Knights will open up their season by hitting the road Aug. 18 to play the Garrard County Lady Lions. The last time the teams clashed, Marion County fell, 2-0.
After going up against the Lady Lions, the Lady Knights will host the Bardstown Lady Tigers on Aug. 20. The teams haven’t faced off since the 2012 5th Regional Tournament. Unfortunately, the Lady Knights were crushed 11-1 in that contest, though the Lady Tigers would be defeated 4-0 shortly after by the Elizabethtown Panthers.
After hosting Bardstown, Marion County will go back on the road for their next three games. They will play against the Montgomery County Indians on Aug. 21, the John Hardin Lady Bulldogs on Aug 25, and the Hart County Lady Raiders on Sept. 4.
The Lady Knights defeated the Lady Raiders, 7-6, in their first victory last season and tied with the Indians, 2-2. They haven’t faced off against the Lady Bulldogs since 2008. There they fell 4-0.
Though they have a long road ahead, Cissell said he’s looking forward to everything about this season, but one particular thing stood out above everything else.
“I’m looking forward to the growth of the players as players and individuals,” he said.