Myers Park High girls soccer coach Bucky McCarley doesnt know how good junior forward Blair Anderes can be, and he thinks thats the best thing about her.
I usually tell college coaches that by a players junior year, you can tell where their ceiling is, McCarley said. Blair is a junior now and college coaches ask, Where do you see her in two years, as a (rising) sophomore in college? I can truly say, I dont know how good she can be. Thats a fantastic thing to have somebody this good and you have no idea how much better she can become.
Anderes, who has offers from several SEC schools, has 28 goals and 12 assists this season. Shes one of three Mustangs with at least 20 goals, joining Abby Givens (23 goals, 14 assists) and Virginia McNeill (22 goals, nine assists). Friday night, Anderes and Myers Park (22-2) will play at Providence (21-1-1) in an N.C. 4A quarterfinal. Providence was ranked as high as No. 4 nationally before a 5-1 loss to Myers Park on April 23.
McCarley said hes hoping for another big game from Anderes in a season already full of them.
Shes got speed and athleticism, McCarley said. And it doesnt matter how skilled you are as a forward, if you dont have the speed and athleticism, you struggle. And Blair has this instinct to make a run at the right time. She gets on the wrong side of defenders and puts them in tough situations. They have a hard time responding to that.
At the start of the 2013 season, Anderes was scheduled to back up a senior who had an offer from Clemson. But before the teams first game against Hough the 2012 N.C. 4A state champ the senior was ruled ineligible. Anderes was thrust into the starting lineup, and became Myers Parks No. 1 option.
She had not been training with (the starters), McCarley said, but she stepped in and held her own. I knew then she was special. My two center backs from last years team one is playing at Alabama and one at Washington & Lee and she gave them headaches in practice. I figure if shes doing that to center backs who are playing very high level college soccer, you knew she would be good.
Anderes is a triplet. She was born two minutes behind Myers and one minute behind Haywood, her brothers. Last summer, she earned a spot on the Charlotte Soccer Academys Elite Club National League team, a rare honor for a high school player. McCarley said playing against such high level competition year-round has made Anderes even better. Area coaches agree.
Shes very dangerous, Hough coach David Smith said. Shes the one player you dont ever want to lose because she can make things happen quickly. She plays the game the right way, and shes really a handful.
Anderes, like her coach, isnt sure how good she can become, but she likes where she is headed.
My confidence has definitely gotten better, she said. I feel more experienced. I feel like I have more of a leadership role this year instead of trying to follow. Im still looking up to seniors and even to sophomores, but I feel like I can really help others on this team get better.
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