The Thunder Basin High School girls soccer team has scored 69 more goals than opponents through 12 games so far this season.
The Bolts have shut out 10 teams and allowed just two goals, both of which are new school records. In 960 minutes on the field, Thunder Basin has scored 71 goals.
After a sweep of Laramie and Cheyenne South this past weekend, the Bolts improved to 12-0 and clinched the No. 1 seed for the regional tournament starting May 13. That No. 1 seed automatically qualifies the team for the state tournament the following week.
While most good teams have a handful of solid players, the Bolts have set themselves apart from the rest of the state for one reason: depth.
“It definitely helps that we are so deep,” said sophomore Eagan Clark. “It helps that we all click together and I think that comes from practice. It is nice to just have talent all across the board, because we really do.”
Fourteen different Bolts have scored a goal this season and 16 have at least one goal or assist. Thunder Basin plays with the attitude that soccer requires a lot more than just one or two good players.
The Bolts have an interesting blend of experienced upperclassmen and up-and-coming freshmen and sophomores. Freshman Cena Carlson leads the team in points with 32 followed closely behind by Clark with 30.
Senior Peyton Roswadovski, the sister of 2019 Gatorade Player of the Year Grace Roswadovski, leads the team in goals with 13 and is third in points with 28. Junior Alex Michael is No. 4 in points with 19 while sophomore Kylie Hayes has 18.
But the Bolts don’t care about points or goals or assists. All the Bolts care about is winning.
“I think we’re more worried about the team instead of, ‘Oh, how many goals do I have’ and all that,” Clark said. “It’s nice because we’re all spread out (on the stat sheet) because there’s not a person on the team that’s worried about if they scored or not.
“It’s about whether the team scores and whether the team wins.”
While there isn’t a single opposing team so far this season that’s been able to solve the Bolts’ punishing offensive attack, it’s not the only thing opponents will have to worry about when the regional and state tournaments roll around.
“Our defense is incredible,” Carlson said. “We have a couple errors sometimes, but our defense is just so fast that we can pretty much just recover anything.”
In net, freshman goaltender Morgan Shirley has a 10-0 record and 37 saves in 695 minutes. Junior Kendra Michael is 2-0 and has 13 saves.
Both goalies have given up just one goal apiece through the team’s first 12 games. The defensive line is equally as solid as a unit, as two of the Bolts top-3 scorers, Clark and Roswadovski, are defenders.
With the No. 1 seed in regionals already clinched, the Bolts will use their last two regular season games against Sheridan and Campbell County to fine-tune some things before the playoffs begin.
“The last few games we’ve been struggling with finishing, so I think that’s one big thing that we’re going to work on,” Roswadovski said. “We just need to come out hard in the first half and just make sure we get the game in our hands right away.
“I think that will be big for us going into the state tournament.”
With a spot at state already guaranteed, Hayes said keeping the team’s head in the right place will go a long way in carrying the Bolts to where they want to end up: the state championship game.
“We want to go in and not be cocky. We want to be humble,” Hayes said. “If you go in cocky, that’ll make us lose. We don’t want to do that.”
The Bolts will end the regular season with a home game against Campbell County Thursday and a road game with Sheridan Friday night. Thunder Basin will host the Camels at 5 p.m. Thursday at TBHS and will play the Broncs at 6 p.m. Friday in Sheridan.