Most improved player?

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Most improved player?

Post by Harry Redknapp on Sat Oct 24, 2009 10:28 am

In the St. Mary's & USF thread we were asked a Random question:

Who is our most improved player this year?

My unequivocal answer:

Kendra.

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Re: Most improved player?

Post by SoreKnees on Sat Oct 24, 2009 1:42 pm

I agree 100%. It's like she's had a total soccer makeover, she's playing so aggressively and using her formidable skills to great effect.

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Re: Most improved player?

Post by purple haze on Sat Oct 24, 2009 3:21 pm

It's unanimous. I can't think of another nominee. Kendra is the surprise of the season. She has come back with a vengeance from injury.

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Re: Most improved player?

Post by Geezaldinho on Sat Oct 24, 2009 3:45 pm

Memory plays tricks on you.

Funny this came up right now. Kendra has 15 starts as of right now, which is the same number she had her freshman year before she went into a two year injury limbo.

Her freshman year (2006) she had 10 goals and 7 assists and had an astonishing SOG% of .463 - better than Megan Rapinoe had that year when she was tearing up the NCAA before her injury, and bettered only by Enyeart's and 16 goals and 6 assists and inhuman .623 rate.

This year she has 6 goals and 2 assists in 15 starts. and her accuracy is a an even .200 - still pretty good.

Admittedly, she's doing a lot of the intangibles that make for team success this year. She plays at a faster pace, plays better defense, is stronger and tougher- just the sorts of things you'd expect from an upperclassman.

I submit she's not so much improved as just healthy and fulfilling the promise she had before she had injury problems.

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Re: Most improved player?

Post by DaTruRochin on Sat Oct 24, 2009 3:54 pm

Geez, I was just typing the same thing...

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Re: Most improved player?

Post by UPSoccerFanatic on Sat Oct 24, 2009 4:52 pm

I agree it's Kendra and I agree it's a return to form to some extent, although I also submit that Kendra is much stronger physically now and loves physical play rather than shying away from it. We only just are beginning to learn how much she has been affected by injuries the last year and a half. She gets better and better with every game. The three pass sequence yesterday from Jessica to Kendra to Jessica to Kendra, GOAL, was about the prettiest little bit of high speed soccer I've seen this year.

My wife was talking during half-time to a fellow who is from India, a graduate student at UP. He had done some soccer coaching in India. I think it was his first Pilots game, and he was raving about Kendra. He was surprised to learn that Kendra's dad is from India.

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Re: Most improved player?

Post by ShipstadPilot11 on Sat Oct 24, 2009 5:20 pm

I think I may know the gentleman you're talking about, UPSF. There was a man living in Shipstad last year who was studying here with the intent of opening up a school in his home country (I do believe it was India). I never got the chance to talk to him much but he was a very nice man.

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Re: Most improved player?

Post by runner girl on Sat Oct 24, 2009 8:37 pm

correct me if I'm wrong, but wasn't Kendra playing mostly forward her freshman year?

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Re: Most improved player?

Post by purple haze on Sat Oct 24, 2009 10:24 pm

If memory serves (and sometimes it doesn't) I recall that she did play forward as a freshman. Another frosh, Enyeart, earned more time up front. But Kendra always did have a scoring touch.

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Re: Most improved player?

Post by Harry Redknapp on Sun Oct 25, 2009 7:23 am

Geez

I don't think the copmparison of goal stats to her freshman season is valid really because she is playiong outside mid this year, and she played forward her freshman season.

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Re: Most improved player?

Post by purple haze on Sun Oct 25, 2009 9:12 am

I'm gratified that Kendra has a place in the lineup, whatever the position. Given the skill of the team's strikers there is little playing time to share among the front runners unless the Pilots are blowing out the foe. For Kendra to move to midfield and make a huge positive impact right away is realy fun to watch. Consider the growth in skill and maturity that she has shown -- that's fun to see also. The players who arrive as freshmen can really develop in the college years. As noted earlier, Foxhoven is showing that growth too in her second season.

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Re: Most improved player?

Post by jc on Sun Oct 25, 2009 9:58 am

Another way to assess player progress is to consider teamwork combinations, how well various pairings or larger groupings work together. As others have remarked, watching Kendra and Jessica together is often a delight. Since Kendra was not playing last year, let alone at right outside mid, I think that pairing represents one of the most obvious improvements in our game this year (they both have always had the ability, just not the opportunity to work the overlap together as they have this year).

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Re: Most improved player?

Post by onetouchfutbol on Sun Oct 25, 2009 10:25 am

Hmmm... I think of Kendra as more of a player who was under-rated in previous years (possibly like PG wrote) than someone who necessarily showed the most improvement. Granted, I live in Seattle and I don't get to see the team as much as I would like. What about Sweeney? Has anyone seen some improvement in her game? She seemed really solid on that left side during the games I was able to see. (Again, I wasn't able to see a lot of games last year. That's one of the reasons I posted the question.) Plus, I'm admittedly biased as a former Bellarmine Prep guy myself...

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Re: Most improved player?

Post by Harry Redknapp on Sun Oct 25, 2009 4:43 pm

At this rate hallie Kreminski will also feature in the most improved category. She has really come on by leaps and bounds since last year. She has always looked like a grat athlete, but last year her soccer skills and game intelligence were not that great.

This year she has grown in confidence and in ability. She is a great option up front coming off the bench. Today she scored three goals on headers! A rare hatrick.

It would be really exciting if she could continue this rate of improvement into next season.

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Re: Most improved player?

Post by A_Fan on Sun Oct 25, 2009 5:02 pm

Maybe we need a separate category of Comeback player of the year for Kendra rather than Most Improved.

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Re: Most improved player?

Post by Geezaldinho on Sun Oct 25, 2009 5:41 pm

Harry Redknapp wrote:At this rate hallie Kreminski will also feature in the most improved category. She has really come on by leaps and bounds since last year. She has always looked like a grat athlete, but last year her soccer skills and game intelligence were not that great.

This year she has grown in confidence and in ability. She is a great option up front coming off the bench. Today she scored three goals on headers! A rare hatrick.

It would be really exciting if she could continue this rate of improvement into next season.


Don't forget Halley was hurt at the start of last season, and it seemed her fitness suffered as a result.

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Re: Most improved player?

Post by UPSoccerFanatic on Sun Oct 25, 2009 6:04 pm

Harry Redknapp wrote:Today Hallie scored three goals on headers! A rare "hat"rick.

Harry, I took liberties with your quote.

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Re: Most improved player?

Post by fozziewozzie on Sun Oct 25, 2009 6:43 pm

a-fan
you read my mind. i think because kendra has been gone so long from us we've forgotten how good she really is/was. my vote for most imporved is halley. an comeback player of the year is kendra. granted, she's taken her game to a level we haven't seen preiously, but she's still for the most part the player we remember an couldnt wait to come back. for me, she's been gone so long ive forgotten how talented she is. am i the only one, really??

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