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Alcovy Lady Tigers trio standing out on the pitch
Alcovy Girls Soccer 2024
Zariah Strozier (left), Jasmyne Boney (middle) and Latara Lewis (right) each rank in the top 10 in their respective stat categories so far into the 2024 season. - photo by Garrett Pitts

Six games into the Alcovy girls’ soccer season, multiple Lady Tigers find themselves high amongst the Georgia High School Association statistic leaderboards.

Latara Lewis, Zariah “Z” Strozier and Jasmyne Boney have been three players that head coach Toby Davis has credited for Alcovy’s 5-1 start to the season.

“As a coach, Latara has saved me in many games right now. She is averaging [around] 30 saves a game,” Davis said. “With Jasmyne, she is a sophomore who is second in scoring behind Z. Z, she is deadly on both ends. I am looking at her to have multiple D1 offers by the end of her senior year. “

Despite having to face a large amount of shots on goal per game, that has not deterred Lewis from having a strong start to her senior season in net — even if the success was unexpected.

“I actually did not expect it, but I am doing a lot better this season,” Lewis said. “I am very proud of that.”

Lewis ranks No. 1 in Region 3-AAAAAA and No. 2 nationally with 165 saves to go along with being ranked No. 2 in goals against average with 30.1, according to MaxPreps.

Being intentional about improving her reaction time in goal has been the main focus for Lewis.

“I have been mainly working on reaction drills. That way, I am quicker to the ball instead of just direct shooting [to it],” Lewis said. “I think that is where most of my saves have come from — just being able to get to the ball faster.”

With the Lady Tigers’ keeper holding high ranks nationally, the sophomore duo of Strozier and Boney hold statistical leads of their own on the offensive end.

Strozier and Boney rank No. 20 and No. 23 nationally in points, respectively. Strozier ranks No. 24 nationally with 19 goals.

In the state of Georgia, Strozier’s 19 goals rank No. 14, while Boney ranks No. 18 with 18 goals.

Within Class AAAAAA, Strozier and Boney are ranked No. 2 and No. 3 in goals, respectively.

Even though this is Davis’ first season as the Lady Tigers head coach, he knew that Strozier was responsible for much of Alcovy’s success in her freshman year. As a sophomore, Davis has high expectations for Strozier.

“I know they were good players from last year, because last year most of our players were freshmen,” Davis said. “I knew that Z carried the team as a freshman. So this year, the expectation level was high for her, but she knows she needs to put the team on her back and try her best to make sure she is focused.”

Having multiple players return from last year’s playoff team is something that Strozier sees as the team’s advantage.

“I think with a lot of us returning back from last year, that is what has led to our success and our [also our] conditioning,” Strozier said. “Just staying together and trusting each other.” 

Alcovy’s lone defeat came in a 5-1 loss to Rockdale County, which was the one game this season where Strozier did not play. 

Prior to the Lady Tigers’ game against Cristo Rey, Davis spoke about the impact that Strozier’s absence had on the team that day against the Lady Bulldogs.

“We missed her against Rockdale [County]. That is our only loss this year — she wasn’t there,” Davis said. “She is a major threat. Whoever we face, they ask ‘Where is Z? Where is No. 4?’”

The connection between Strozier and Boney has allowed the Lady Tigers to have success putting the ball in the net. 

From Boney’s perspective, the connection begins on the practice field.

“[It is] in practice — doing different drills and connecting with each other so we can get comfortable with each other,” Boney said. “Being able to pass more and being able to shoot  more and have it on target.” 

With Strozier and Boney each having success up front, Davis has been going into games with the intention of letting the duo “feed off each other.”

That mindset has worked, as the team is just one win shy of its win total from a season ago.

“One game, they were locking Z down, and I said ‘Jasyme, you have to get open. You have to move, because they are going to try to capitalize and put Z in a box.’” Davis said. “When Jasymne started scoring, they had to start worrying about [playing man] on her. That’s when Z pretty much had four goals in one game. It is hard to check both of them at the same time.”

As the team has had a combination of success on the front and back-ends of Alcovy’s starting 11, the bond of the team from front to back is what the players view as the team’s biggest strength going forward.

“We definitely communicate a lot. Sometimes as a team — even if we don’t communicate verbally, we still act as a whole,” Lewis said. “We know where we are going to be in every moment, that is what I feel our strongest advantage is.”