After playing soccer for Fallon during the 1990s, Randy Hines and Lance Lattin are trying to turn around the Lady Wave program in their fourth year together.
Hines, who took over as the head coach three years ago, is putting the focus this year not on wins or losses, but building the team to be more complete and with trust.
“We need to continue to build as a team and trust one another. We have the skills to compete with any team in the league if we can play as a team,” Hines said. “(Coach Lattin and I) work together in both practice, games, and strive to make the kids the best soccer players they can be. Our dedication along with our knowledge is what is going to make us successful.”
While trying to improve from last year’s 3-18 record is a goal this year, Hines reiterated building a complete team and that the rest would take care of itself. Fallon sits 1-8 overall (1-3 in league) with the lone win over Sparks snapping a five-game losing streak to start the season. Fallon lost a nailbitter last week against Lowry, 1-0.
“Our goal this year is to strive to become a complete team in all aspects of the game,” Hines added. “We have a solid core with our older and younger players. We will continue to build the team chemistry.
“We need to improve our fundamentals. If our fundamentals are solid, everything else falls into place.”
Hines returns a solid mix of players, including seniors Samantha Hines (goalkeeper), Kenna Hamlin (midfield), Chandler McAlexander (defense), Mayla Dahl (midfield) and Seidi Lopez (defense). Returning juniors include Adrianna Cortez (defense), Aspen Mori (defense) and Rylee Ott (defense), and sophomores include Hailey Guerrero (forward) and Bianca Lopez (midfield).
“Kenna is coming off an ACL tear last year. She is our offensive midfield and has great ball control and vision of the field,” Hines said.
New to the team are senior Karla Hernandez (forward), junior Amelia Klein (midfield), sophomore Madelyn Mikulak (defense), and freshmen Lillian Howard (forward), Sydney Gusewelle (midfield) and Franny Mori (midfield).
Coach Hines is counting on McAlexander, Hamlin and Samantha Hines to lead the team this season as captains.
“Our captains lead our team in practice, bus trips and games,” coach Hines said. “We expect them to be supportive of all players on both teams. They lead by example, not by barking orders.”
Hines said South Tahoe and Truckee have proved to be two of the best teams in the league and North Tahoe, Incline and North Valleys are also solid.
Nearing the halfway mark, Fallon sits in eighth (out of 10 teams) but don’t count Fallon out of the playoff hunt, especially after the close game against the Buckaroos. The Lady Wave has the final playoff spot going into the second half of the season. The regional tournament is in November at South Tahoe.
“After South Tahoe and Truckee, I feel that any of the remaining six teams can fill the remaining playoff spots,” Hines said.