As Pace’s senior co-captain and most valuable player, Zwecker scored 16 goals and had a team-best 16 assists at midfielder to help lead Pace to the Class A semifinals for the first time since 2006 and be the Neighbor Area Player of the Year.
This came after Pace basketball’s season, where she played point guard until the campaign ended Feb. 25 with a loss to Gordon Lee in the Class A state playoffs. Knight soccer, then 1-2, got Zwecker back and rattled off 15 straight wins by a combined score of 91-7.
She scored three goals in the final two playoff games, including Pace’s only regulation score on a penalty kick against Fellowship Christian in a 1-1 (3-1 PKs) loss in the semis.
“She’s a really good holding midfielder,” Pace coach Liz Tutt said. “She likes to go to goal. She’s a playmaker, and she’s central to reading the field and seeing what we need to do, so she’s been critical to our success.”
Although heading to Amherst (Mass.) College for basketball, Tutt said earlier this season Zwecker easily could play both sports collegiately that she excelled in at Pace. She wouldn’t be the first Knight to pull double duty at Amherst, as Pace football and baseball coach Matt Hall played both sports at the college.
Pace’s leading goal-scorers on the year were Arden Carlton (24 goals) and Evelyn Hobbs (17 goals), giving the trio 57 goals alone between them, an average of three a game.
Holy Innocents’ sophomore forward Grant Wilmer also had a brilliant season, scoring 19 goals and adding 15 assists as the leading offensive threat for the Golden Bears, which reached the Class A semifinals as well.
“She is by far the most valuable player aiding in almost half of the goals we scored this season with the actual finish or the assist,” Holy Innocents’ coach Stephani Kohl said. “She is dangerous anywhere on the field and she is a tireless worker.”
Westminster’s defense paved the way for its berth in the Class AA semifinals, not allowing more than single goal in regulation in all but one game. Coach Clark Meyer especially praised the work of senior right defender Catherine Johnston, particularly her individual defense and ability to transition to attack. He also called the center back tandem of senior Sam Battey and junior Tanner Kaplan the best he’d seen in 15 years at the school. Sophomore striker Liza Linginfelter led the Wildcats with 18 goals.
Other players to stand out this year included Riverwood forward Alexis de Groot (17 goals, five assists), who tied a record for most goals in a season by a Raider player, and Lovett midfielder Mary Catherine Battle, who had five goals alone on headers from set pieces and was named the team’s MVP.
Name (Pos.) School
Merrill Stovroff (F) Galloway
Taylor Anderson (F) Holy Innocents’
Grant Wilmer (F) Holy Innocents’
Brianna Ryce (F) Holy Spirit
Arden Carlton (F) Pace
Alexis de Groot (F) Riverwood
Liza Linginfelter (F) Westminster
Megan Culberson (MF) Galloway
Bailey McBride (MF) Holy Innocents’
Shannon O’Hanlon (MF) Holy Innocents’
M.C. Battle (MF) Lovett
Lauren Schaffer (MF) Pace
Haley Zwecker (MF) Pace
Virginia Hamilton (MF) Westminster
Kelsey Roof (D) Lovett
Rachel Greenberg (D) Riverwood
Sam Battey (D) Westminster
Tanner Kaplan (D) Westminster
Catherine Johnston (D) Westminster
Aubrey Stone (GK) Galloway
Wyn Ponder (GK) Westminster
Name (Pos.) School
Louis McGirt (F) Atlanta International
Ana Philbrook (F) Atlanta International
Kimberlin Rogers (F) Lovett
Rachel Goldman (F) North Springs
Evelyn Hobbs (F) Pace
Callie Bergin (F) Riverwood
Rebecca Proschansky (F) Riverwood
Amelia Cole (MF) Galloway
Julia Bird (MF) Holy Innocents'
Madeline Gibson (MF) Holy Innocents'
Selina Kelete (MF) Holy Spirit
Annie Boydston (MF) Lovett
Molly Minnen (MF) North Springs
Erin Woodruff (MF) Riverwood
Kathryn Murray (MF) Westminster
Angela Dale (D) Holy Spirit
Kandace Thompson (D) Pace
Megan Crosby (D) Riverwood
Madeline Morse (D) Riverwood
Sarah Belisle (GK) Holy Innocents'
Hope Barker (GK) Lovett
Player of the Year: Haley Zwecker, Pace