A week into the new school year, Broadneck center midfielder Emily Lord is loving her senior gig.
She's quick to say it's completely different. She's finished with her classes at 10:30 a.m. every day. In her third year on varsity, she is a captain for the No. 6 Bruins. And she's learning a new position after playing her first two years at forward.
It has been a lot to take in, and Lord is excited and primed for a banner year. Lord showed a fine ability to distribute the ball last season — finishing with eight assists to go with three goals — and she'll have the chance to set up teammates even more this fall with the ball at her feet more in the middle.
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Broadneck High School, 1265 Green Holly Dr, Annapolis, MD 21409, USA
A 'B' student, Lord is in the AVID (Advancement Via Individual Determination) program, which helps students prepare for college. Lord is undecided on a school, but she would like to play soccer at the next level.
What's going to be the key to a successful season?
We are all so close this year, the closest we've ever been. Everybody gets along, everybody hangs out and I think that's a big key to success. If you have outside problems going on, that can affect how you play. This year, we all like to do stuff together and we all know how each other plays and play well together, so it should work out pretty well.
What's it like being a captain?
It's kind of hard because there's more pressure on you. Everybody is looking up to you and you have to set an example. We have to organize events, fund raising and stuff like that, so it's a lot different. I really like it, though. It's nice being on top and having the others look up to you.
What did you learn from last year's seniors that will help you lead this year's team?
Last year, pretty much every single senior did really well in school. Seeing them do well and having them there to encourage you really helps, so I try to do the same. Some of the younger girls on the team don't take school as seriously as they should, so I'm trying to lead them in a good direction.
How do you like playing midfield?
I like it a lot. It's a whole different perspective because you're everywhere. When I played up top, I just stayed up top. But now I'm back for corner kicks and up for the corner kicks, and also taking some corner kicks. I'm just, like, everywhere, and I like that even though it's way more tiring.
What has been the toughest adjustment moving to midfield?
It's a much bigger responsibility. We have three center mids and I'll be the attacking mid, so I'll have to distribute the ball more this year.
What will it take to bring home a state title?
I definitely think we have what it takes. Everybody is taking it very seriously in practice and that's where it really starts. If you don't do it in practice, you're not going to do it in games. So as long as we keep up the intensity at practice and then every single game, not playing slower than we should, we'll be fine.