Sprague’s Rogers Stepping Up As Leader

By Jeremy McDonald

jeremymcdonald73@gmail.com

SALEM, Ore.–  Sprague’s Amity Rogers would ask herself here and there of ‘what would Nicki’ do as the Olympian junior takes the recently-graduated Nicki Williams spot on the pitch early in this season.  Taking lessons learned from Williams as she takes more of a leadership role this Fall for a young Sprague Girls Soccer team that wrapped up its fourth-game of the season Tuesday night at home. 

“I would always try to remember what she did because she’s a phenomenal athlete last year,” Rogers described.

Learning from Williams, learning from McKenzie Wernicke as a sophomore, Rogers was part of a Sprague team that went 9-4-2 overall and reached the postseason for the first time since 2016.  All while earning first team All-Mountain Valley Conference selection as a sophomore joining Williams on the first-team as the lone two Olys to have been named to the list.

“It was awesome.  Playing with Nicki Williams and Mack(McKenzie) Wernicke, they were amazing players.  They really helped me learn my position.  Last year was a good year for us, we should’ve probably went past the first-round of playoffs, but I felt like it was a really good year for us,” Rogers said.

Sprague has started the 2022 season 2-2 after graduating 11 seniors from their 9-4-2 team from last season (Picture By Jeremy McDonald)

Tuesday night was a tough defeat to a strong Crescent Valley team, falling to the Raiders 6-2 after being within one goal of the 5A squad going into the second half before CV got into a groove pretty quickly.  A good learning experience as Sprague, who are 2-2 on the year at the moment, continue to grow and develop their younger players.  Good thing is, they only have two seniors on the roster, so the future is looking bright for the Olympians.

“It really taught us  not to put our heads down, even if you’re five-down you still got to keep going.  We lost eleven seniors  from last year and we have two seniors this year, it’s a really young team.  But we’ve been able to score and combine pretty well, we’re a young team but we have a lot of potential,” Rogers said.

Rogers scored the lone goal for Sprague in the second half, but sophomore Jenna Ralls stepped up to the plate in the first half and scored the first goal of the game for Sprague.  Going from her defender position in the back of the field to score with the Olys turning their focus to McKay on Thursday.

“Jenna has really stepped it up this year.  She’s amazing, takes it all the way down field and scores.  She’s a really good role model and as a captain as a sophomore it’s really amazing,” Rogers said of Ralls.

After their game with the Scots on Thursday, Sprague finishes up their non-league schedule with Canby on Tuesday,

Photos By Jeremy McDonald

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