Just before the season started, former Van Horn head girls soccer coach Matt Tracy was no longer with the team for undisclosed reasons.

Activities director Chris Corrie, who was a soccer coach when Van Horn first moved to the Independence School District in 2008, took over the duties for a week before handing the keys to assistant Vanessa Brockmeier, who had served as the assistant coach for the past two years.

She served as the interim head coach after the March 25 game against Excelsior Springs and led the Falcons to a 10-10 record and to the Class 3 District 15 championship game.

“My goal this season was to do a good job and make the transition for the girls seamless,” Brockmeier said.

Next year, Brockmeier will get to be the head coach for her first full year as Corrie hired her last month, removing the interim label. She also will be teaching at Van Horn for the first time after being a science teacher at Bingham Middle School last school year.

“I was really excited,” Brockmeier said. “I also got a biology teaching job at Van Horn and that made me more excited because I get to be closer to the players.”

Brockmeier said her transition to interim head coach during the 2019 season was made easier thanks to Corrie, who had been mentoring her throughout the season.

“It was a good opportunity to prepare myself for the task ahead,” Brockmeier said of being an assistant under Corrie for a week. “He gave me great insight. He was a great mentor and helped prepare me for that head coaching role.

“I was asking him questions about different lineups and we would talk through it.”

Overall, she was pleased with how the season turned out.

“There were some games that we should have won that we didn’t,” Brockmeier said. “We learned a lot and I am happy with how it went. I am definitely looking forward to next season and growing as a coach and as a team.”

And she said she’s hopeful for improved results in 2020.

“The girls are training really hard this summer,” Brockmeier said. “They are in the weight room every day. I think next year we are going to be bigger and better.”