“We return Mason and Erin, and they are both very good defenders,” Tuggle said. “I feel our defense will come along with Desiree and Mollie Martinez, when we have Mollie back there.
“Stormie and Peyton will also see time as starters back there.
“I also have Kylie Burke, a freshman who can play back or midfield. She is very tall and athletic and will help us now and in the future.”
Besides Aaron and Burke in the midfield, also playing the position will be freshman Sami Hickey, sophomore starter Alana Holly and juniors Grace Baeza and Gabi Lazo, the latter who will start.
Kylie and Gabi will be counted on in the middle,” Tuggle said. “Gabi has had some injuries the past couple of years but she is ready to go this year.
“I know what Kylie can do, but Gabi is going to have to step up and take control this year. Gabi has good ball skills and will be more of an offensive-style center mid, and Kylie will be playing with a more defensive type of style.”
Tuggle will not have to worry about his goalkeeper as sophomore Brittany Smith, an all-district, honorable mention performer from last year, returns in net.
“It is always nice to have your goalie return,” Tuggle said. “Brittany is young, but she is a solid goalkeeper.”
The Lady Rams reached a milestone when they scored a goal in a playoff game last year for the first time in school history. Tuggle hopes the Lady Rams do more than just qualify for postseason play this season.
“The goal is to reach the playoffs again,” Tuggle said. “We just don’t want to qualify for the playoffs, we want to compete when we get there.”