SV seniors leave behind championship legacy

St. Vincent seniors Elizabeth Wibbenmeyer (left) and Megan Lipe were part of all of the recent success for the girls soccer program, which included three straight trips to the Class 1 state championship game. The Lady Indians went 56-19-1 the past three seasons with two state titles.

By 
Justin Hotop

St. Vincent girls soccer seniors Megan Lipe and Elizabeth Wibbenmeyer don’t know anything but team success. The two seniors had been a part of every minute of the recent run for St. Vincent girls soccer that saw the program reach the Class 1 state championship game three consecutive seasons, including two state titles.
But like every other program this spring, the girls soccer season was never able to get off the ground for the Indians, thanks to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Both Wibbenmeyer and Lipe were disappointed to see their careers cut short without getting on the field, but the thought was the same throughout the program.
“I think it’s a mutual feeling across the team that everyone is a little upset to not be able to play this spring,” Lipe said. “We were looking for that four-peat and its disappointing not to get that chance.”
Wibbenmeyer and Lipe were slated to be the captains for the 2020 season, under new coach Todd Strattman, as the pair of lone seniors on the roster. Wibbenmeyer was ready to take the leadership role with Lipe and lead the Indians this past spring.
“I was looking forward to having Megan by my side this year,” Wibbenmeyer said “We had a little younger team this year, but I was confident that we would be talented enough to get back to state this year. We made a lot of progress even in the two weeks that we practiced.”
Coach Caitlin Pistorio, the Lady Indians coach for the past three seasons, would take very little of the credit for the multitudes of success for the program but the seniors had nothing but good things to say about her and how she lead the team to such heights.
“I not only learned soccer skills from Coach P, but also on a personal level,” Lipe said. “There were times that I would lose sight of that end goal, but coach was always there to get us back on track emotionally and physically to give it our all while we were on the field.”
Those attributes were exhibited throughout the previous three seasons as the Indians went 56-19-2, and each season St. Vincent faced off with Saxony Lutheran in the district championship game. Every game with the Crusaders has gone down to the wire and is one of the games that the team looks forward to each year.
“I always wanted to go into that game as physically ready and focused,” Wibbenmeyer said. “We always seemed to play them in big games and that’s one team we always had to beat to move on.”
Lipe was especially key in the last district championship game against the Crusaders as her goal in the final 20 seconds of overtime, from 40 yards away, won the district for St. Vincent.
It’s something that Lipe remembers fondly.
“It was a hard fought game and both teams wanted to win so badly,” Lipe said of that game. “It was now or never, and worst case we would have had another period of overtime. But I never thought that it would have gone in. It was a moment of relief for me that we were able to win.”
While the seniors were looking forward to their final seasons as Indians, Lipe was aware of the type of legacy that she and Wibbenmeyer will leave behind.
“We just have to realize the things we were able to accomplish the last three years,” Lipe said. “Succeeding to that level was something that the team wanted every year and something we strived for.”
Lipe and Wibbenmeyer will always remember their time with the girls soccer program.
“Being able to say that I went to St. Vincent and was able to be a part of those great teams and experience that, is something that I will never forget,” Lipe said.

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