In the huddle with Eilanna Dolan
DARIEN—Last season, the Darien girls soccer team made it all the way to the state semifinals in Class LL.
The Blue Wave lost a lot of talent to graduation, but still return a strong core.
One of those returnees is Eilanna Dolan, a senior midfielder who was named one of four captains for the upcoming season.
What made you guys so good last year?
“The most important thing about last season success was the bond with the team. Rveryone was really close, everyone came together and saw the opportunity in front of us, took it one game at a time and came together as a family.”
What can fans expect this season?
“We’re definitely going to be relying on the strong returning players that we have. We have so many returning seniors, so we’re just going to continue that relationship and expectations we had last year and carry it forward this year.”
How has your role changed as a senior?
“I think the most important thing is getting to the incoming freshman and the other underclassmen. Varsity is scary for newcomers, so as a senior it’s making the new girls feel comfortable so they’re able to focus on the field.”
Being a one-sport athlete?
“It’s interesting, most people in Darien juggle multiple sports, so if you do one you play club out of season. For us it’s the high school season and you finish and immediately are training for club and its fun. It’s nice to play soccer year round because you can hone your sport. A lot of girls who don’t play in the offseason play lacrosse and that’s still nice because everyone on the team tends to stay in shape and that’s why we have a lot of athleticism on the team.”
How would you describe your game?
“That’s one of hardest things, to describe yourself on the field. A lot of people categorize me as being aggrieve and that’s our tendency on the field. I think I’m a reflection of the team goal, we try to connect with each other with passes and be strong and win 50/50s. So, I see myself as a attacking player who can win balls in the air.”
What have you improved headed into this season?
“Last year one thing on the team was winning balls in the air and being strong on both ends of the field, so in club season it was focusing on giving 110%, winning those balls, not giving up. I think I’ve been maintaining and improving my work ethic and working on distribution and connecting on passes instead of launching it over the defense so that we can play a more sophisticated game.”
What’s your favorite part of playing?
“For all of us, high school soccer is our favorite season. I’m smiling right now because it’s everyone’s dream. The team is so close, we all hang out, out of season. We’re a big family, so returning for preseason you’re going back to your friends. Winning games together is even better.
What’s your favorite subject?
“I had a lot of fun last year in AP US history, so I think history is one of my favorite subjects because it’s nice learning about the past.”
“I’m not really sure. I’ve visited a couple of colleges, but it’s going to be a waiting game to see what schools I get in to. I think soccer is definitely a goal in college. I just don’t know how that’s going to play out. I’ve been to a couple schools, so I’m going to continue those talks with coaches or try to walk on.”
“The typical one is pasta. I really like pasta and the carbs get you prepared for the game.”
“Last year, we really utilized the speakers and our song was “shots.” But really any hype music that gets you amped up for the game.”
Our team is highly superstitious. They’ll probably laugh at that, but I remember last year before quarters all the juniors ate at the Sugar Bowl because we did it the week before. Everyone wore the same gear, the same headband, we’re all superstitious.”