TAMPA – For some teams , losing a U.S. Under-17 International at what may be the most critical position on the field would be a devastating blow.
But Berkeley Prep’s girls soccer team is undaunted by the absence of Bryane Heaberlin, who is in Miami to train with the national team, because in back-up Morgan Orobello they feel they have a goalkeeper who is more than up to the task of helping them get to the state final four.
“Morgan was with us last year, and played five games for us,” Buccaneers coach Ken Roberts said. “And four of them were ranked teams. This year, she played three matches, and it was St. Pete Catholic, a 1-0 win, and Tampa Prep the first time around, a 1-0 win, so Morgan has the ability to keep us in a game just as much as Bryane does.”
The Buccaneers open the Class 3A-Region 3 tournament tonight against Frostproof at 7 p.m., and while Orobello said she was a little nervous after Wednesday’s practice, she believes she can get the job done for the side.
“I feel like (my teammates) think I can do it,” Orobello said. “I feel like I know I can do it.”
Of course, having players like sweeper N.D. Ubezonu, and defenders Taylor Richardson, Anne Kelly and Brooke Banning in front of her won’t hurt, Roberts adding that the side wouldn’t change anything as far as their approach to the game.
“We still expect to play the ball back to (Orobello’s) feet, she’s strong with her feet,” Roberts said. “We’ll keep everything status quo. We’re more worried in going into the playoff games about us, about how we play and playing our style than we are about what our opponents are going to do. If anybody thinks they’re going to get an opportunity on her, they’ve got to get by the whole team before they get to her.
“It’s a team game. It’s a team game on defense just like it’s a team game on offense. One kid doesn’t do it all, and one kid can’t do it all once you get to this point in the season.”