Nathan Williams had big expectations for himself and his team from the minute he took over the Providence girls’ soccer team last December.
Williams, the Charlotte Observer girls’ soccer coach of the year, and his team finished 23-2-1 and reached the N.C. 4A state finals. Providence lost to Cary’s Panther Creek High in the championship round.
The Panthers, who spent most of the season as No. 1 or 2 in the state (4A coaches’ poll) also won the SoMeck8 conference championship, going 13-1 in league play. Providence was dominant all year, outscoring their opponents 125-7, including 19-3 in their playoff run.
Williams’ co-captain and senior center midfielder, Ellie Deaver, is the Charlotte Observer player of the year, after leading her team with 22 goals and 11 assists.
Deaver, a two-time all-state selection, finished her career with a school-record 89 goals, eclipsing the previous mark by 15 goals.
Deaver will continue her soccer career in college, as she has already signed to play for the Charlotte 49ers.
All-Observer Girls Soccer team
Player of the Year: Ellie Deaver, Providence.
Coach of the Year: Nathan Williams, Providence.
Ashlynn Serepca, Hough, Fr.: All-state, Region 10 player of the year, MECKA 4A conference player of the year had 24 goals, 18 assists, is a member of U16 & U17 U.S. National team.
Cami Couch, Lake Norman, Sr.: All-state, North Piedmont conference player of the year is University of Mississippi signee.
Courtney Walker, Cuthbertson, So.: All-state Cavalier forward exploded for 39 goals, and is already an Ohio State commit.
Maggie Wadsworth, Weddington, Jr.: Two-time, all-state performer had 26 goals, 13 assists, Lehigh University commit.
Emily Nelson, Charlotte Catholic, Jr.: Emerged as the Cougars’ top offensive weapon, all-state pick with 28 goals.
Ellie Deaver, Providence, Sr.: Charlotte 49ers’ signee and two-time all-state pick had 22 goals to finish her career with a school-record 89.
Emily Hilliard, Weddington, Jr.: Two-time all-state pick, Princeton University commit had another big season with 10 goals, 18 assists.
Perry Zollicoffer, Charlotte Latin, Sr.: Versatile all-state pick led Hawks back to a NCISAA 3A state championship, Davidson College commit.
Emmily Cowie, Hough, Sr.: Appalachian State signee, all-state pick had 20 goals, nine assists.
Emily Weisberg, Cuthbertson, Sr.: All-state, Lynn University (FL)-bound midfielder had 15 goals, 12 assists, while also making critical move to defense in the last half of the season.
Lauren Ellis, Providence, Sr.: All-state pick and Louisville commit also made critical move to defense for her team on a team that gave up only seven goals all season.
Megan Goodling, Myers Park, Sr.: Davidson College signee had another all-state season for Mustang defense.
Riley Orr, Lake Norman, Jr.: All-state defender helped lead Wildcat team to 4A state semifinals, Charlotte 49ers’ commit.
Lindsey Bish, Ardrey Kell, Sr.: Lees McRae signee was SoMeck8 conference player of the year, all-state pick as Knights’ shutdown defender.
Rebecca Kuzmanovich, Community School of Davidson, Sr.: Two-time all-state defender was major part of Spartan defense that allowed on six goals all season.
Taylor Ray, Porter Ridge, Sr.: Appalachian State bound keeper had 11 shutouts this season, allowing less than a goal per game (0.727), posted school-record 47 shutouts in her Pirate career.
Alex Denny, Hough, Jr.
Madison Neely, South Mecklenburg, Sr.
Lauren Lucas, Providence Day, Sr.
Chelsea Vickers, Marvin Ridge, Jr.
Nicole Hogue, Lincoln Charter, Jr.
Abbe McCarter, Charlotte Latin, Sr./Carson Jones, Providence Day, So.
Olivia Odle, Weddington, So.
Mary Masner, Lake Norman, Jr.
Nikki Torres, Union Academy, Sr.
Mallory Hopkins, Sun Valley, Sr.
Anna Boda, Parkwood, So./Molly Boda, Central Academy, So.
Erin Iknayan, Lake Norman Charter, Sr.
Molly McGarry, Providence, Jr. (also midfielder)
Kristin Brown, Lake Norman, Sr.
Hailey Wright, South Iredell, Sr.
Grace Kwiatkowski, Community School of Davidson, So..
Claudia Dickey, Charlotte Latin, Fr.