EASTPOINTE — East Detroit High girls soccer coach Whitney Cipriano is in her first year with the program.
So are half of her players.
“We’re going to have to build on working together as a team,” said Cipriano, taking over a Shamrocks team that went 8-5-5 overall and 6-2-4 in the Macomb Area Conference Silver Division last season.
“Half of the team is returning, while the other half is new. Many of the girls have never played with each other, which makes it hard to know what your teammate is capable of during the game, especially when the season is still new. I believe that once we’re able to get into that good groove, we will be very successful.”
Even though Cipriano sees building on-field communication as an area East Detroit must work on, she said her Shamrocks have the potential to win a division title.
A division crown would be the first for East Detroit since the Shamrocks went 11-0-0 in winning the Silver in 2008.
“It’s not easy developing that vital relationship with your teammates in four weeks,” said Cipriano, whose team sat at 0-2 overall and 0-1 in the Silver at press time. “Once we develop that solid foundation, then we’re golden.”
Cipriano said she thinks each team in the Silver will bring something different and challenging to each game. St. Clair Shores South Lake went 12-0-0 to win the league last year.
Cipriano said each of her players strives to get better every day. That’s something the East Detroit coach takes pride in, she said.
“The strength of our team is (the players’ ability to want to continuously improve),” Cipriano said. “We figure out what we need to work on and then adapt it when in the game.”
Even though she thinks her team has the potential to win a title, Cipriano said she wouldn’t judge the Shamrocks’ success this season on wins and losses.
“I just want the girls to come out, play their best and have fun,” Cipriano said. “If we accomplish that, then we will have a successful season.”
East Detroit next hits the field for a matchup with Warren Fitzgerald at 4 p.m. April 17 at Forest Park Elementary School in Eastpointe.