High School Sports

N&O All-Metro girls soccer team and final top 25 rankings – 2017

Cardinal Gibbons ended the year No. 1 in The N&O area rankings.
Cardinal Gibbons ended the year No. 1 in The N&O area rankings. newsobserver.com

Cardinal Gibbons lost an extra-time heartbreaker in the N.C. High School Athletic Association 4A championship, 4-3 to West Forsyth, but remains atop the final edition of The News & Observer 17-county area top 25 rankings.

The Crusaders were followed by one-loss Green Hope (lost in 4A fourth round to Hoggard on PKs), three-time 2A champ Carrboro, Middle Creek (lost in 4A fourth round to Gibbons) and one-loss Wakefield (lost in 4A second round to Middle Creek) to round out the top five.

1A champ Franklin Academy was sixth, followed by Leesville Road (lost in 4A third round to Green Hope) and 3A runner-up Corinth Holders.

The All-Metro team has even more impressive headliners than usual. Leading the 30-player team are Gibbons’ Maggie Pierce and Wakefield’s Tori Hansen each spent time training with the U.S. National Team during the season. Woods Charter’s Isabel Pearce broke the state record for single-season goals (80) as well as the career record (226).

Pearce, Carrboro’s Miah Araba and West Johnston’s Robin Pollard (tied for 5th-most goals in state history – 197) made the team for the third straight time. Green Hope’s Grace Wagner, Carrboro’s Alexa Wojnovich and Natasha Turner made the list for the second season.

Green Hope and Gibbons had four selections each. Carrboro had three.

N&O ALL-METRO GIRLS SOCCER TEAM

Forwards

Laurynn Ansted, Southern Lee

The senior ended her career with the most goals in Southern Lee history. This year she scored 50 goals with nine assists.

Ansted
Laurynn Ansted (4) of Southern Lee breaks through the Vikings' defense, Allyson Gailey (7) and Kelsey Blatz, right, of Union Pines to score the first goal for the Cavaliers. The Southern Lee Cavaliers played the Union Pines Vikings in a girls soccer game that took place in Sanford, N.C. on Wednesday, May 3 2017. Southern Lee won 2-0. Fabian Radulescu newsobserver.com

Sarah Bland, Rocky Mount

Though Rocky Mount did not track assists this year, the Big East 3A Conference Player of the Year had 43 goals to lead the No. 16 Gryphons to the conference title in her senior season. NCSCA all-state.

Bland
Eastern Alamance's goalkeeper Marisa Camuto (0) arrives to the ball before Rocky Mount's Sarah Bland (3) could make the shot attempt during the Eastern Alamance High School girl's soccer game against Rocky Mount High School in Rocky Mount, N.C. on Tuesday, May 9, 2017. Carl Copeland newsobserver.com

Nona Borden, Durham School of the Arts

The sophomore burst onto the scene for the No. 23 Bulldogs, scoring 43 goals to go with six assists. Northern Carolina Conference Player of the Year and NCSCA all-state.

Borden
Durham School of the Arts' Nona Borden (15) fights for the ball with Karrington Blackmon (1) and Taylor Epps of Roanoke Rapids in a girls' soccer match on Wednesday, March 29, 2017 at DSA. Joe Johnson

Taylor Currie, Cardinal Gibbons

Part of what made the No. 1 Crusaders so dangerous was the speedy senior. She scored 26 goals with 12 assists.

Currie
Taylor Currie (12) of Cardinal Gibbons takes a shot on goal against Riley Terry, left, and Delaney Cowart (4) of West Forsyth. The Cardinal Gibbons Crusaders played the West Forsyth Titans in a soccer game that took place in Raleigh, N.C. on Saturday, May 27 2017. West Forsyth won 4-3. Fabian Radulescu newsobserver.com

Shelby Jones, J.H. Rose

Had a big senior year and was voted Eastern Carolina 3A/4A Conference Player of the Year. Scored 40 goals and had 15 assists, earning NCSCA all-state honors.

Jones
J.H. Rose’s Shelby Jones (30) battles for the ball during the Leesville Road High School girl's soccer game against J.H. Rose High School in Greenville, N.C. on Friday, May 12, 2017. Carl Copeland newsobserver.com

Alex Kerr, Chapel Hill

The sophomore helped the Big 8 Conference champion Tigers find the back of the net a lot. Had 44 goals and 14 assists for the No. 14 team.

Kerr
Alex Kerr, right, of Chapel Hill tries to pressure a Carrboro player. The Carrboro Jaguars played the Chapel Hill Tigers in Carrboro, N.C. on Wednesday, March 16, 2016. Chapel Hill won 2-1. Fabian Radulescu newsobserver.com

Isabel Pearce, Woods Charter

An easy NCSCA all-state pick after scoring 80 goals to go with 14 assists for the 1A East runner-up Wolves. Was also voted North Central Athletic Conference Player of the Year. Woods Charter finished No. 21 in the N&O rankings, its first time ending the year ranked in any sport. Pearce, a three-time All-Metro pick, now owns the state’s career and single-season goal records.

Pearce
Isabel Pearce (22) of Woods Charter breaks through the marking of Haley Turner (9) of East Wake Academy to score the first goal for the Wolves. The Woods Charter Wolves played the East Wake Academy Eagles in a girls soccer game that took place in Chapel Hill, N.C. on Monday, May 1 2017. Woods Charter won 3-0. Fabian Radulescu newsobserver.com

Robin Pollard, West Johnston

The senior nearly scored 200 goals in her storied career. The three-time All-Metro pick (first from West Johnston) scored 57 goals and had 14 assists en route to Greater Neuse River Conference player of the year honors.

Pollard
West Johnston's Robin Pollard (9) makes move to get around Clayton defender Peyton Doyle (10). Coverage from the girls soccer between the Clayton Comets and the West Johnston Wildcats played in Benson, N.C. on Wednesday, April 26, 2017. Clayton defeated West Johnston 3-2 in overtime to clinch the Greater Neuse River regular season championship. Dean Strickland

Haleigh Stackpole, Overhills

The junior missed a few games but still scored a whopping 54 goals to go with 18 assists as the Jaguars won the Mid-South Conference Tournament. Has already committed to Ole Miss.

Stackpole
Overhills' Georgia Migos (8) is met by teammate Haleigh Stackpole after scoring during the Lee County at Overhills girls' soccer game in Spring Lake, N.C. on Thursday, April 20, 2017. John Lucas newsobserver.com

Alexis Strickland, Millbrook

The sophomore has already committed to North Carolina. Was a dangerous weapon for the No. 9 Wildcats, scoring 20 goals to go with 7 assists.

Strickland
Millbrook's Lexie Strickland (left) is congratulated by teammate Makaya Parham (7) after tying the game in the 57th minute. Coverage from the prep soccer game between the Millbrook Wildcats and the Broughton Captials played in Raleigh, N.C. on Monday, March 20, 2017. Millbrook defeated Broughton 3-2 for the win. Dean Strickland

Midfielders

Annabelle Abbott, Holly Springs

The freshman was one of the most feared players in the Southwest Wake Athletic Conference. She scored 12 goals and handed out 15 assists for the No. 13 Golden Hawks.

Abbott
Holly Springs’ Annabelle Abbott during Fuquay-Varina's soccer match at Holly Springs on Wednesday, March 8, 2017. Holly Springs won the game 3-0. Ray Black III newsobserver.com

Miah Araba, Carrboro

The three-time N&O All-Metro pick is also a North Carolina recruit. Had 17 goals and 16 assists in her senior season. Controlled possession for the 2A state champion Jaguars. NCSCA all-state.

Araba
Miah Araba (10) of Carrboro takes a shot on goal against Abby Walker (2) of West Stokes. The Carrboro Jaguars played the West Stokes Wildcats in a soccer game that took place in Raleigh, N.C. on Saturday, May 27 2017. Carrboro won 3-0. Fabian Radulescu newsobserver.com

Kaitlyn Bouck, Wakefield

The sophomore’s 20 assists were among the highest in the N&O area. Also scored five goals for the No. 5 Wolverines. She has already committed to High Point.

Bouck
Wakefield's Kaitlyn Bouck (2) kicks the ball goalward during the Sanderson Spartan high school soccer game with the Wakefield Wolverines high school , March 16, 2017, in Raleigh , N.C. Johnny Johnson newsobserver.com

Izzy Brown, Green Hope

The sophomore and North Carolina recruit scored 12 goals and had two assists, but primarily was tasked with dispossessing attacking players.

Brown
Green Hope's Izzy Brown (14) is all pumped up after her score during the Leesville Road high school soccer match with Green Hope high school in the third round of the state high school playoffs at Cary N.C. on May 16, 2017. Green Hope won 5-0. Johnny Johnson newsobserver.com

Taylor Cammarata, Green Hope

Don’t let five goals and nine assists fool you: the senior Carnegie Mellon (Pa.) recruit engineered the Falcons’ attack from midfield as Green Hope finished No. 2 in The N&O rankings. An NCSCA all-state pick.

Cammarata
Green Hope's Taylor Cammarata (16) battles Leesville Road's Cayley Kennedy (7) for the ball during the Leesville Road high school soccer match with Green Hope high school in the third round of the state high school playoffs at Cary N.C. on May 16, 2017. Green Hope won 5-0. Johnny Johnson newsobserver.com

Haley Garrett, Cardinal Gibbons

The senior and LSU recruit was voted the PAC-6 Conference player of the year. Had 14 goals and four assists from the midfield for the No. 1 Crusaders. NCSCA all-state.

Garrett
Haley Garrett (3) of Cardinal Gibbons takes a shot against Bri Hudnall (7) of West Forsyth. The Cardinal Gibbons Crusaders played the West Forsyth Titans in a soccer game that took place in Raleigh, N.C. on Saturday, May 27 2017. West Forsyth won 4-3. Fabian Radulescu newsobserver.com

Meredith Hamby, Panther Creek

The senior will play at Charlotte next year and was voted to the NCSCA all-state team. Was the No. 12 Catamounts’ catalyst in the midfield.

Hamby
Meredith Hamby (7) of Panther Creek takes a shot on goal against Shaelyn Raleigh (11) of Athens Drive. The Panther Creek Catamounts played the Athens Drive Jaguars in a girls soccer game that took place in Cary, N.C. on Monday, April 17 2017. Panther Creek won 5-1. Fabian Radulescu newsobserver.com

Tori Hansen, Wakefield

The sophomore had great versatility and missed a few games to play with the younger divisions of the U.S. Women’s National Team program. The North Carolina recruit was a NCSCA all-state pick and had 18 goals with one assist. Played mostly midfield but excelled on the back line and at the top of the formation as well.

Hansen
Wakefield's Tori Hansen (11) kicks towards the goal just missing wide during the Sanderson Spartan high school soccer game with the Wakefield Wolverines high school , March 16, 2017, in Raleigh , N.C. Johnny Johnson newsobserver.com

Anu Kane, Corinth Holders

The freshman came in from Hawaii and helped the No. 8 Pirates to their first appearance in a state championship game. Had 11 goals and nine assists, but her skill on the ball and high work rate stood out more than any number. NCSCA all-state. Already committed to USC.

Kane
Corinth Holders' Anu Kane (10) dribbles between Weddington defenders Maddie Smith (9) and Faith Adams (18) during the NCHSAA 3A girls soccer state championship match between Corinth Holders and Weddington at NC State University on Saturday, May 27, 2017. Weddington won the game 1-0. Ray Black III newsobserver.com

Anna Krussow, Franklin Academy

The senior had 19 goals and 11 assists and showed her deft touch in the 1A title game, where she was voted MVP. An NCSCA all-state pick.

Krussow
Raleigh Charter's Ashley John (8) and Franklin Academy's Anna Krussow (25) fight for a ball during a high school soccer game in Cary, N.C. on Friday, Apr. 21, 2017. Ben McKeown newsobserver.com

Mattie Murphy, Middle Creek

The sophomore was always active for the No. 4 Mustangs in the midfield, scoring four goals and adding 10 assists.

Murphy
Middle Creek's Mattie Murphy slips this shot past Wakefield's Sierra Lowery (15) and into goal to put the Mustangs up 2-0 midway through the first half. Coverage from 2nd round of the 4A NCHSAA Girls Soccer playoffs between the Middle Creek Mustangs and the Wakefield Wolverines played in Raleigh, N.C. on Saturday, May 13, 2017. Middle Creeks defeats Wakefield 2-1 to advance to the third round of the playoffs. Dean Strickland

Maggie Pierce, Cardinal Gibbons

The sophomore North Carolina recruit missed some time in the playoffs after receiving an invite to the U.S. Women’s National Team. Showed strength and speed in the midfield, tallying 22 goals and 28 assists.

Pierce
Maggie Pierce of Cardinal Gibbons scores the third goal for the Crusaders. The Cardinal Gibbons Crusaders played the West Forsyth Titans in a soccer game that took place in Raleigh, N.C. on Saturday, May 27 2017. West Forsyth won 4-3. Fabian Radulescu newsobserver.com

Grace Wagner, Green Hope

The junior is a two-time All-Metro pick. The Clemson recruit was voted Southwest Wake Athletic Conference player of the year. Scored 21 goals with 16 assists.

Wagner
Green Hope's Grace Wagner (19) is all smiles after her score during the Leesville Road high school soccer match with Green Hope high school in the third round of the state high school playoffs at Cary N.C. on May 16, 2017. Green Hope won 5-0. Johnny Johnson newsobserver.com

Alexa Wojnovich, Carrboro

Making the All-Metro team for the second time in as many seasons, the sophomore excelled in winning the ball back for the 2A champion Jaguars. Could also get forward in attack, scoring 21 goals with six assists.

Wojnovich
Alexa Wojnovich (4) of Carrboro celebrates along her teammates after scoring the second for the Jaguars. The Carrboro Jaguars played the First Flight Nighthawks in a girls soccer game that took place in Carrboro, N.C. on Tuesday, May 24, 2016. Carrboro won 5-0. Fabian Radulescu newsobserver.com

Defenders

Natalie Chandler, Orange

The senior was voted Big 8 Conference player of the year and to the NCSCA all-state team. A Richmond recruit.

Chandler
Orange's Natalie Chandler ( 7) stops the ball during the Northwood Chargers high school soccer game with the Orange Panthers high school on April 5, 2017. Johnny Johnson newsobserver.com

Rachel Golden, Leesville Road

The leader of the Pride’s back line will play for UNC-Asheville after this, her senior year. An NCSCA all-state defender.

Golden
Leesville Road's Rachel Golden (right, 17) defends a Green Hope player during the Leesville Road high school soccer match with Green Hope high school in the third round of the state high school playoffs at Cary N.C. on May 16, 2017. Green Hope won 5-0. Johnny Johnson newsobserver.com

Bailey Petersen, Green Hope

The senior was an NCSCA all-state pick for the No. 2 Falcons and was a big reason for 13 shutouts.

Petersen
Green Hope's Bailey Petersen (18) dribbles the ball during the Leesville Road high school soccer match with Green Hope high school in the third round of the state high school playoffs at Cary N.C. on May 16, 2017. Green Hope won 5-0. Johnny Johnson newsobserver.com

Reni Taiwo, Cardinal Gibbons

The senior Tampa recruit was an NCSCA all-state pick for the No. 1 Crusaders.

Taiwo
Reni Taiwo (2) of Cardinal Gibbons follows the ball in the air as she prepares to defend. The Cardinal Gibbons Crusaders played the West Forsyth Titans in a soccer game that took place in Raleigh, N.C. on Saturday, May 27 2017. West Forsyth won 4-3. Fabian Radulescu newsobserver.com

Natasha Turner, Carrboro

The senior defender made the All-Metro team for a second time. The Duke recruit had also made it her sophomore season. Scored 14 goals with five assists.

Turner
Carrboro's Natasha Turner (8) heads the ball alongside Leesville Road's Katie Groff (15) in Raleigh, N.C. on Wednesday, March 8, 2017. Leesville Road won 3-0. Liz Condo newsobserver.com

Goalkeepers

Madison McNally, Wake Forest

The senior USC-Upstate recruit was the lone goalkeeper to make this year’s team. An NCSCA all-state pick, she made 110 saves for the Cougars.

McNally
Wake Forest’s Madison McNally takes a goal kick against Millbrook in a 2016 game. N&O File Photo

Final N&O girls soccer rankings

Team

Pvs

Rec.

1. Cardinal Gibbons

2

22-2-1

2. Green Hope

1

23-1

3. Carrboro

5

21-1-1

4. Middle Creek

6

15-6-3

5. Wakefield

7

16-1-3

6. Franklin Academy

15

23-2

7. Leesville Road

3

19-3-2

8. Corinth Holders

16

19-5-1

9. Millbrook

4

16-3-3

10. Heritage

9

12-8-3

11. Pinecrest

10

15-5-2

12. Panther Creek

13

12-6-1

13. Holly Springs

14

13-7-1

14. Chapel Hill

12

17-3-1

15. East Chapel Hill

17

13-7-1

16. Rocky Mount

18

16-5-1

17. Durham Academy

8

14-2

18. Cary Academy

11

12-4-1

19. Fuquay-Varina

22

12-10-3

20. Sanderson

21

11-11-1

21. Woods Charter

24

16-5-1

22. N.C. Science and Math

19

13-2-1

23. Durham School of the Arts

20

16-3

24. Cary Christian

NR

19-3

25. Grace Christian Raleigh

23

17-1-1

N&O All-Metro girls soccer team

Pos.

Name, school

Yr.

Accomplishments

F

Laurynn Anstead, Southern Lee

Sr.

50 goals, 9 assists

F

Sarah Bland, Rocky Mount

Sr.

43 goals

F

Nona Borden, Durham School of the Arts

Soph.

43 goals, 6 assists

F

Taylor Currie, Cardinal Gibbons

Sr.

26 goals, 12 assists

F

Shelby Jones, J.H. Rose

Sr.

Eastern Carolina 3A/4A POTY; 40 goals, 15 assists

F

Alex Kerr, Chapel Hill

Soph.

44 goals, 14 assists

F

Isabel Pearce, Woods Charter#

Sr.

NCHSAA record holder / 80 goals, 14 assists

F

Robin Pollard, West Johnston#

Sr.

Greater Neuse POTY / UNLV recruit / 57 goals, 14 assists

F

Haleigh Stackpole, Overhills

Jr.

Ole Miss recruit / 54 goals, 18 assists

F

Alexis Strickland, Millbrook

Soph.

UNC recruit / 20 goals, 7 assists

M

Annabelle Abbott, Holly Springs

Fr.

12 goals, 15 assists

M

Miah Araba, Carrboro#

Sr.

UNC recruit / 17 goals, 16 assists

M

Kaitlyn Bouck, Wakefield

Soph.

5 goals, 20 assists

M

Izzy Brown, Green Hope

Soph.

UNC recruit / 12 goals, 2 assists

M

Taylor Cammarata, Green Hope

Sr.

all-state midfielder / 5 goals, 9 assists

M

Haley Garrett, Cardinal Gibbons

Sr.

PAC-6 POTY / LSU recruit / 14 goals, 4 assists

M

Meredith Hamby, Panther Creek

Sr.

Charlotte recruit / all-state midfielder

M

Tori Hansen, Wakefield

Soph.

UNC recruit / 18 goals, 1 assist

M

Anu Kane, Corinth Holders

Fr.

USC recruit / 11 goals, 9 assists

M

Anna Krussow, Franklin Academy

Sr.

1A title MVP / 19 goals, 11 assists

M

Mattie Murphy, Middle Creek

Soph.

4 goals, 10 assists

M

Maggie Pierce, Cardinal Gibbons

Soph.

UNC recruit / 22 goals, 28 assists

M

Grace Wagner, Green Hope*

Jr.

SWAC POTY / Clemson recruit / 21 goals, 16 assists

M

Alexa Wojnovich, Carrboro*

Soph.

21 goals, 6 assists

D

Natalie Chandler, Orange

Sr.

Big 8 POTY / Richmond recruit / all-state defender

D

Rachel Golden, Leesville Road

Sr.

UNC-Asheville recruit / all-state defender

D

Bailey Petersen, Green Hope

Sr.

all-state defender

D

Reni Taiwo, Cardinal Gibbons

Sr.

Tampa recruit / all-state defender

D

Natasha Turner, Carrboro*

Sr.

Duke recruit / 14 goals, 5 assists

GK

Madison McNally, Wake Forest

Sr.

USC-Upstate recruit / 110 saves/ all-state goalkeeper

*-Two-time pick; #-Three-time pick.

Eligible counties

Chatham, Durham, Franklin, Granville, Harnett, Johnston, Lee, Moore, Nash, Orange, Person, Pitt, Vance, Wake, Warren, Wayne, Wilson.

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