Passing the torch: Young players honor Chrisman seniors with strong showing

Cody Thorn
Special to The Examiner
William Chrisman seniors, from left to right, Jasmine Harmon, Ally Baltimore, Hunter Taylor, Abby Bauman, Kayli Perez and Karina Vela walk arm in arm across the field after being taken out together to applause from the crowd during their final high school game Tuesday at Chrisman. The seniors were honored after defeating rival Truman 6-0.

On a night to honor seniors, the freshmen continue to make noise for the William Chrisman girls soccer team.

The Bears got another hat trick from freshman Cameron Wells and rolled to a 6-0 victory over Truman during a scrimmage Tuesday on Chrisman’s Norman James Field.

Wells finished the two-game Independence School District round-robin with nine goals and left an impression on her teammates.

“It was nice the last two games to play with the freshmen,” Chrisman senior goalkeeper Karina Vela said. “We were excited to have them up and playing this year. We were saying we would probably have a good amount of success with Cameron scoring nine goals in the past two games. It would’ve been nice to see what she could’ve done in a whole season.”

Wells accounted for nine of the Bears’ 12 goals in the two games and all of the goals were by either a freshman or sophomore.

Wells made a name for herself with six goals in a win against Van Horn on Monday and followed it up with a hat trick against the Patriots. Chrisman led 2-0 at halftime after freshman J’Lea Berry had goals in the 15th and 17th minutes.

Wells scored the next two early in the second half, getting markers in the 50th and 54th minutes.

“They both have so much potential,” teammate and senior midfielder Kayli Perez, who will move to Florida to pursue a dream of doing makeup at Disney, said of the freshman standouts. “They can go to a D-I college if they keep it up.”

Wells got her hat trick with the final goal of the night in the 68th minute. Two minutes prior, sophomore Emma Gervy scored for Chrisman.

With three minutes left, the seniors for Chrisman checked out of the game for the final time to a loud cheer from the crowd. The roster listed eight seniors for the Bears and seven of them started: Perez, Vela, Alexis Cosello, Jasmine Harmon, Hunter Taylor, Abby Bauman and Ally Baltimore.

Vela, who will play soccer at Metropolitan Community College, pitched a shutout and held teams scoreless in three of the four halves she played the past two days.

The addition of a scorer like Wells made things easier for the seniors. Perez joked that when she saw the ball was near the freshman, she could slow down sprinting a bit.

“Half the time, I was like, ‘OK, Cam’s got it, I’m not running up there,” Perez said.

Wells is a midfielder/forward for her club team, Midwest Premier FC, but she hasn’t had a stretch like this before when it came to lighting up the scoreboard.

She showed the closing ability on the field with four goals in the second half against Van Horn and tallied three in this game.

“I didn’t think I would have this success, my freshman year at least,” Wells said. “It is amazing. I had a lot of fun, and scoring nine of the 12 goals is fun and pretty amazing. It was pretty amazing when you score and everyone yells ‘Cameron!’ It is really fun when the crowd knows my name.”

The scoring prowess of the newcomers made the seniors wonder what could’ve been for a team that went 16-4 last year.

That was the best mark for a Chrisman team that had winning seasons the past two years after eight straight years of losing seasons.

“I think this team would’ve been amazing and it is super sad that we didn’t get our chance,” Perez said. “We are finishing it off with two games instead of 20-plus is hard. I don’t think it has hit me that yet that it was the final game. I feel like throwing up instead of crying right now, but I’m sure when I lay down tonight, I will be like, ‘Wow, it’s over.’”