The Laramie Plainsmen soccer team had a taste of success last season, but now they want even more in 2022.

With seven starters and 16 lettermen returning from last year’s consolation championship trophy-winning team, Laramie looks to take that next step and possibly contend for a state title.

The Plainsmen went 11-7 last year. They tied for third in the 4A East Conference with a 7-5 mark. After a third-place finish at the regional tournament, LHS faced Jackson in the first round at the state tournament and lost, 9-1. They bounced back with a 2-1 victory over Evanston in an elimination game before a 5-0 win over Cheyenne East that earned them the consolation trophy.

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Head coach Anne Moore is in her fourth season. She says this year’s squad has a lot of firepower.

“We have a lot of seniors that are offensively-minded, (plus) Talon Luckie in the goal (as a keeper) is a returning that’s a senior, so we have a really good group of returners from last year. The problem is, defensively, we only have one returning, and so just figuring out how to piece everything together to replace the players that graduated last year, that’s kind of been our challenge.”

Moore felt they gave up some goals they normally wouldn’t in their first weekend last week in Green River at a jamboree, but she feels they learned some valuable lessons.

How do the players feel? KOWB’s David Settle spoke with seniors Talon Luckie and Cameron Hoberg about the 2022 season.

The Plainsmen are off to a 2-1 start. They beat Evanston and Green River but lost to Star Valley in the jamboree last weekend.

Moore called it a successful start because they have something to build from compared to last year when they didn’t get to play a match before conference games started.

“This was great seeing the other side of the state because normally we have 14 games. They’re all conference games, and we only get one out of conference game. This allowed us, because it was festival, to play three games.”

She feels that will benefit her team moving forward.

The key Moore says will be to get everyone on the same page quickly.

“The returners know the expectation. Most of them have been with me for four years. It’s just the freshmen and younger players that are going to contribute to the varsity to get them caught up as quickly as possible, so we can mesh as a team and be successful as a team.”

Laramie start 4A East Conference play on the road this weekend. They are at Campbell County on Friday at 6 p.m. Then, it’s a showdown with the fifth-ranked Plainsmen at No. 4 Sheridan on Saturday at noon.

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