With four girls with nine or more goals apiece, Warren's soccer team has a lot of boot power.
And, if Melissa Dickerson, Raeli Barnes, Raelyn Gardner, and Mackenzie Ullman are on target when the No. 3-seeded Lady Warriors play No. 2-seeded Unioto in an OHSAA Girls Soccer Division II District Tournament semifinal at Jackson High at 7 p.m. tonight, look out.
The Mark Williamson-coached Lady Shermans are probably going to have their work cut out for themselves, because which Lady Warrior weapon do they key on?
Times file photo
Warren’s Melissa Dickerson (10) battles for the ball before drawing a foul from Parkersburg's Alexa Standley (1) during the first half of a soccer match at the Warren soccer complex last season. Dickerson’s leads the 2012 Lady Warriors in scoring this fall with 17 goals and 17 assists.
Check out one, and another one takes her place - and so on. It's a defense's worst nightmare.
Thing is, the Ekrem Eksi-coached Lady Warriors (11-1-5), who claimed their first Southeastern Ohio Athletic League (SEOAL) championship this fall, really don't rely on any one player to score. On average, the team is scoring a little over three goals per contest.
This fall, Warren's Fab 4 has tallied 50 of the 55 goals by the team.
Dickerson, a 2011 All-Ohio honoree, leads the royal blue and white scoring parade with 17 goals and 17 assists. The senior standout had a second-half insurance score and an assist on the first goal in Warren's 3-1 triumph over Washington Court Hourse (11-7) in a sectional final in Vincent last Thursday night.
Barnes had the second goal in the sectional match, and it turned out to be the match-winner. Only a freshman, she is second on the team in putting the ball in the back of the net with 13 scores and eight assists.
Scoring the first goal against the Washington Court House Lady Lions was Gardner, who now has 11 scores and three assists on the season. She's only a junior, and also a standout pole vaulter on the track and field team.
Rounding out the royal blue and white foursome, Ullman, a senior, has nine goals and two assists this fall.
Tonight, Warren is also expected to start Lara Eksi, Emma Yabs, Marissa O'Callaghan, Natalie O'Dell, Addie Barnes, Jordanna Rauch, and keeper Janelle Barth.
Halee McPherson didn't start against Washington Court House, but was credited with an assist on Raeli Barnes' goal.
Warren's backup keepers are Rachel Grogg and Kayla Maze.
The rest of the Lady Warrior soccer roster includes Amber Bable, Hayla Zyla Dennis, Brittany Dobbs, Kuhn Kinnedy, Katie Lerch, Alexis Coffman, Ashley Edgell, Myers Megan, Jordan Smrek, and Alisha Bable.
Ekrem Eksi's assistant is Cathy Jankauskas, and Tyler Barnes is the team's consultant and goalie coach.
Defensively, Warren is allowing less than one score on average per match.
Unioto advanced to district by blanking Jackson, 3-0, in a sectional championship tilt in Chillicothe - also last Thursday. Kayla Pele, Meghan McKell and Jenny Campbell each had a goal for the Lady Shermans. Lexi Maughmer and Danielle Cremeans had one assist apiece.
Getting off to a good start, Unioto got two of its scores in the first 25 minutes of the competition.
Defensively, the Lady Shermans have shut out their last four opponents.
The winner of the Warren-Unioto match will face the winner of the Hillsboro-Circleville Logan Elm game in a district final at Jackson High at 10 a.m. Saturday.
Hillsboro is the top seed in the bracket.