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Lady Blue Devil soccer preps for region play

    Three games into the regular season, the Lady Blue Devils have an idea of what’s working and what they need to change going forward.
    Coming off a tough 7-0 loss to Calvary Day Tuesday, Statesboro (2-1) will head into their first region game of the year with they take on Richmond Hill on the road.
       The Lady Devils started the season with a 2-1 win over Wayne County followed by a 4-1 win over Liberty County.
    The Lady Blue Devils lost an important senior class from last season, but have the right pieces in place to be competitive in Region 3-AAAAA.
    “I think we’re doing pretty well. We have a strong group of returning seniors providing some pretty good leadership for us and a mix of young players and returning players that have some experience,” SHS coach Brian Thomas said.
    The Lady Blue Devils want to start their region schedule off on the right note against Richmond Hill and the defensive effort may be the key factor in the game.
    Defensively, Alexis Costlow is a player the Lady Blue Devils can look to for leadership. Statesboro’s goalkeeper Rachel Wiggins is coming off a recent injury. Trainers cleared her to play Wednesday. 
    SHS also plans on switching formations to give the defense a boost. Against Calvary Day, the Lady Blue Devils switched from a 4-4-2 formation to a 4-2-3-1.
    “It gives us two defensive midfielders instead of one and I think that will shut down some passing lanes and put more pressure on them. We’re able to counter attack better,” Thomas said. “The girls are a little more confident in that formation so we’ll play in that against (Richmond Hill).”
    Along with Costlow, Coach Thomas said Cally Reed, Morgan Bowen and Adeline Stone have helped the team adjust to the change in defensive formation.
    As far as the Lady Blue Devils’ offense goes, Coach Thomas said his team needs to put more pressure on teams and scores goals. Against Calvary Day, Statesboro struggled and will look to bounce back today.
    SHS offense has benefited from Mika De Asis and Flor Dajui. In the win over Liberty County, both De Asis and Dajui scored two goals a piece.
    “De Asis is a real dynamic player. She has the ability to beat two or three players off the dribble. We want to see her move forward and do that,” Thomas said. “Smith Kaiser and Flor Dajui have been playing good as well and they have created some great chances for us.”
    Statesboro will play Richmond Hill today at 5 p.m.