Sauers First Wyoming Recruit Signed This Year
A familiar name within the Park County soccer scene will hit the field for the Northwest College Lady Trappers this fall.
Genevieve Sauers, a standout on the pitch for the Cody High School Fillies, signed a letter of intent with NWC last week in Cody. Sauers is the first Wyoming recruit to be signed by new Lady Trappers head coach Bobby Peters.
“I wanted to be close to home for the first few years of college,” Sauers said of her decision to play for NWC. “It was financially the most affordable.”
Sauers started playing soccer at the age of 3, and has been hooked on it ever since. She’s also played volleyball, ran cross-country and participated in indoor track in high school — though soccer always came first.
“Sometimes people play sports for that long and they get tired of it,” she said. “Soccer was never like that for me, I really love it.”
Sauers will bring a “strong physical presence” to the program, coach Peters said — and he expects her to contribute from the start.
“Genevieve’s a strong player; she’s a good size for college soccer,” said Peters, who watched her play in a few games for the Wyoming 307 team.
“She’s our first Wyoming recruit of the year so far, and it’s exciting to be able to get a strong local player to stay here,” Peters said.
Sauers popped up on Peters’ radar after a conversation with NWC men’s coach Stan Rodrigues, who had been recruiting for the women’s team before Peters was hired.
“He said, ‘Here’s a girl who is definitely worth a look. She’s a strong player and she’s local, which would be good,’” Peters recalled of his conversation with Rodrigues. “He kind of helped me bridge that gap and find her.”
Arriving in town and starting to recruit just a few weeks ago, Peters said getting Sauers to commit was a big boost for the program.
“Having only been here for a short time, I really didn’t have a clear direction of where to go to find players,” he said. “Obviously I was going to go watch these [local] games, but I didn’t know who to reach out to and get in touch with. Stan pointed me in the right direction and I talked to her [Sauers], and we were good to go after that.”
Sauers knows she’s joining a team in transition at NWC. Coming off a winless season and adjusting to a new head coach, this season will be a rebuilding one for the Lady Trappers. But that challenge was part of the attraction for Sauers when she chose to sign.
“Coach Peters is a new coach, and it seems like he’s going to be a good asset to the team,” Sauers said. “I’m excited to see where we can take the team this year. It’s definitely going to be good competition, and I’m just excited to see what happens.”
With her athleticism, Sauers is able to play a number of different positions, Peters said — though he recruited her as an attacking wing. He won’t know until practices begin where the best fit will be, though he’s certain Sauers will make an immediate impact.
“With the way I’m going to have the team play, she could likely fit into a different role than she’s in now,” Peters said. “She’s strong on the wing, she can play the middle as well. She’s got a nice kick — she’s good at scoring from range or up tight. Realistically, I’m going to have to evaluate her once she’s here with the rest of the players to see what her best fit would be.”
Peters said he likes his team to play out of a 4-3-3 or a 4-1-4-1 formation, with his wings “getting up into the attack, crossing the ball well, having the pace to outrun the defenders and the confidence to beat them one-on-one.”
“That’s something I noticed with her [Sauers], she has the confidence to take players on,” Peters said. “She hits accurate crosses when she gets down in the corner fairly frequently; I saw her do that quite a bit. It’s exciting. I think she’ll have a place where she can step in and start to contribute right away. She can play multiples; I don’t think she’s pigeonholed down to one.”
As for other local and regional players he might recruit, Peters said he’s just about finished with his international recruiting for the upcoming season and will now focus on other Wyoming recruits and his returning players.
“With our returners, we’re looking pretty strong,” he said. “We’ve got a lot of kinks to work through. The team’s not a bad squad; they’re starting to come together. I think we’re on a good path, we’re filling the holes that needed to be filled pretty quickly, and Genevieve [Sauers] is a great first step to that.”
The defending state champion Cody Fillies are off to a fast start to the 2018 season, sporting a 3-0 record heading into Tuesday’s game against Riverton. As much as she’s looking forward to being a Lady Trapper, Sauers said it will be difficult to hang up her Cody jersey for the last time.
“I’m really going to miss this group of girls that I’m playing with,” she said. “We have such a great team, such a great bond.”