The 2018 season for the Bellevue girls soccer team didn’t live up to its own lofty expectations, finishing with a 5-5-2 league record and failing to make the state playoffs. Wolverines head coach Peter Cochran said last year’s team played too individualistic, something he hopes to see change.
“It was a good taste of humility for everyone involved in our program,” Cochran said. “We’ve become accustomed to having very lofty goals and we didn’t earn it last year.”
This year’s Wolverines team will be young, but Cochran said they have a deep roster full of versatile players who can play all over the field.
“I’m blessed this year with having a team of soccer players,” Cochran said. “The majority of my roster can play almost any position on the field. That gives the coach a lot of flexibility tactically on how they set up their team.”
Cochran said the Wolverines have a solid team this year that won’t be relying on one or two star players to carry them.
“Program-wide, from (C team) to varsity, the depth of the talent is as strong as we’ve had in a long time,” Cochran said.
Bellevue does have experience defensively with senior Courtney Serres, a versatile defender and midfielder who was named second-team all-KingCo last season, and junior Audrey Miller, who was voted as the team’s defensive most valuable player. The Wolverines will also get Paige Satterlee back, a senior center back who played with the team her freshman year before joining a development academy. Satterlee, who has committed to playing soccer at New Mexico University next year, will be a big addition for the Wolverines.
“I’m excited for Paige just to play high school sports again,” Cochran said. “I think it’s truly special.”
Two sophomores who Cochran expects to be impactful players are Chloe Capriotti, a defender and midfielder, and midfielder Halle Fletcher, who played on varsity last year. Hinana Takashima, a freshman midfielder, is the sole freshman on the roster.
While Bellevue hopes to return to the state playoffs, there will be plenty of tough opposition standing in its way. Cochran said KingCo is the strongest 3A league in the state, with the last three state champions coming out of the division.
“All those squads are going to have muscle-memory of what it’s like to win,” Cochran said.
Along with Mercer Island and Liberty, Cochran said Lake Washington is going to be a very good team this year. With a difficult league schedule, every game for the Wolverines will be important, but the rivalry match with the Islanders will mean even more. Bellevue hosts Mercer Island on Oct. 8, and they will travel to the island on Oct. 31.
“It’s a really fun rivalry,” Cochran said. “Rivalries are funny for me, especially with Mercer Island and Bellevue, because the kids are so similar, the parent groups are so similar. I have the deepest respect for the coaching staff at Mercer Island.”