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11/11/2022 09:55 AM

Riebold Making an Early Impact For Valley Girls’ Soccer

Freshman Madelyn Riebold made an early mark on the Valley Regional girls soccer team. Photo courtesy of Madelyn Riebold

Madelyn Riebold is a freshman playing mid-field for the Valley Regional Warriors soccer team. In her short time, Maddie has already emerged as a driving force for Coach Lloyd Warren’s team, dictating pace and keeping the team focused and competitive. Coach Warren sees her as an impressive all-around player and an important factor in controlling possession for the Warriors.

“She’s the team’s engine. She plays in the center of the park, she’s got great tenacity, she’s got good ball skills, and I can trust her to be a driving force for the team and give us that push when we need it…if we can win the mid-field, we can win a lot of games. And I think she’s going to give us the opportunity to do that.”

Maddie enjoys playing mid-field as it gives her the opportunity to interact with the entire team and contribute on both the defensive and offensive sides of the ball. “I think my favorite part about playing mid-field is I love who I play with,” Maddie says. “I feel like I have the most action out on the field. I like playing it out wide and receiving it back and playing it forward. I like tackling, I like everything about it. It’s always been really fun to me.”

Maddie, who started playing soccer at the age of 3, has always brought an undeniable competitive edge to the game. She now plays year-round and credits her love and continued passion for the sport to her role models and coaches including her Southeast Soccer Club coach Joel Dickinson. “I went to [play with] Southeast Soccer Club and my coach was Joel Dickinson.” Maddie says, “he really brought my love for the sport out, and he made me who I am today, he’s basically my soccer savior.”

As a fellow mid-fielder, Maddie also draws inspiration from US Soccer legend Carli Lloyd. Known for her tenacious style of play and knack for clutch goals, Lloyd made a huge impact on Maddie who was lucky to have the chance to meet her hero in 2016. “Carli Lloyd has always been my inspiration. I went and met her in 2016 and I got a book signed by her, and that moment I was like, ‘man, I could do anything because I just met Carli Lloyd!””

Maddie scored her first high school career goal on September 27th in a game vs Portland. She earned player of the game honors for her stellar play in leading a comeback for Valley. The Warriors conceded a goal early and trailed 0-1 until Maddie’s 40-yard strike proved to be the decisive moment in earning a 1-1 tie.

“I just remember going lightheaded and seeing everyone running towards me.” Madelyn says, “it was a great moment, and we held our own for the entire rest of the game. I think that Bella Giuliano played really well that game as well. She stopped all the attackers from getting past her, and she had a sprained ankle. I think that game was one of our best games that we played all year.”

Coach Warren saw the game vs Portland as a definitive moment in Maddie’s young career, signaling her arrival as a major factor in the conference. “She came up at the right moment, she stepped up,” Warren says. “She put the ball away and really had a positive influence on the match…what she provided to us was fantastic and to me that was the game that she really arrived in the conference and made it known that hey I’m one of the top players here, I’m going to be here for a long time.”

Coaches around the league have certainly started to take note. Maddie was recently named an honorable mention to the Shoreline All-Conference team, the lone freshman to receive the honor.

“Every single coach I speak to brings her up,” Coach Warren says of Maddie. “Coaches outside the program, coaches inside the program, she’s just a very good individual, a very positive individual, that impacts the game in a big way and is somebody that we’re very fortunate to have.”

Valley will see 10 seniors graduate this spring including most of the starting lineup. With such a large senior class, Madelyn is one of only three players who will be returning for Valley next season. Coach Warren sees this as an opportunity for her to step into more of a leadership role for the Warriors.

“It is definitely an opportunity for her to step up even more than she has already.” Warren says, “I think as she matures as a student athlete, she’s going to take on more of that responsibility regardless of it being given to her as a title. I think she would take it on with just the way that she applies herself.”

Madelyn was captain of her middle school team and looks forward to again leading the talented group of young players that Valley will add to the program next year. When the senior class departs this spring, Madelyn feels confident current juniors Riley Soares and Emilee Surber will make great future captains.

“I’m really excited to step up, I was the captain of my middle school team and seeing all the future freshmen come up, it’s going to be nice because they already see me as a leader. But, Riley Soares is going to be a great leader though, so I’m excited for her to step up and be our leader. I’m hoping she becomes captain…Emilee and Riley work well together, and I feel like it’ll be a really good partnership if they both become captain.”