Injuries may be a part of all sports and teams who blame these maladies are using them as a crutch for a subpar year.

Sometimes, blaming these ailments for a tough year has merit and the Weston girls soccer team's claim that its injuries made the difference is legitimate. In 2009, Weston's top two scorers combined for 23 goals and 15 assists. Both players, senior tri-captain Callie Bowie, who will be playing for Clemson University next year, and sophomore Grace Mattison, were hampered by injuries and the team ended up scoring only 15 goals while finishing the year at 3-10-3.

"The injuries killed us but we were still in every game except for one," Lady Trojans Coach Joanna Hallac said. "We absolutely would have made states if it weren't for the injuries. Last year, we had depth but this year we didn't. Unfortunately, we weren't able to overcome the injuries."

Bowie, who first had a sprained ankle, followed by a fractured foot, only played in three games.

"It's frustrating because it was my senior year and I had high expectations but I tried to make the most of it," Bowie said.

Mattison missed half the season because of an ankle sprain. Classmate Alex Fontaine had a bone contusion to her knee and a concussion, senior tri-captain defender Dani Mouybayed had a torn ACL, sophomore younger sister Morgan Mouybayed had a concussion, sophomore Sydney Allen had an ankle sprain freshman defender Shelby Merberg had a sprained MCL. Even senior tri-captain goalie Hannah Hutchins, who stepped it up in net, wasn't speared the injury bug and missed the last three games because of a concussion.

"I don't want to blame injuries but to miss our two leading scorers was detrimental to the team," Dani Mouybayed said. "It definitely hurt our morale. If we were all healthy and had our full starting lineup, we'd make states."

Hutchins kept the team in many games and was the team MVP. She was a Second Team All-SWC selection.

"It was second year on varsity and my experience junior year helped me," Hutchins said. "My coach being a goalie helped me with positioning and helped me correct my form in diving."

Before falling short this fall, Weston has enjoyed success with three straight Class M tournament appearances. In 2009, the Lady Trojans won a tournament game and were hoping to build on it.

"It was a letdown not to make the playoffs after making it for three straight years," Hallac said. "Other than the Barlow game, in which we got crushed [7-0], we were in every game and if the breaks went our way, it could have been a different year. Our record wasn't indicative of the talent we have or how we played. What could have gone wrong, went wrong this year. We had opportunities but didn't take advantage. You don't win many games by scoring only 15 goals a year."

Bowie said, "It was a disappointing year because we had higher expectations for ourselves. "Everyone did their part, which made it a successful season, but unfortunately, we had injuries, which impeded how we did."

Hutchins said, "I was a little disappointed with the actual results but we worked hard and I'm proud of the team."

Dani Moubayed said, "Even though we didn't have the record we hoped for, we played with heart. The underclassmen stepped it up."

Despite the losses, the team had good chemistry and worked well together on and off the field.

"The team as a whole was closer than any team I had before," Hallac said. "The captains' work in the offseason made the difference. We were inconsistent but the work we did this year will help in the future. This year will make future teams hungrier."

Although she only played three games, Bowie was a First Team All-SWC selection. Junior Rachel Lugossy and freshman Whitney Farber made Second Team All-SWC. Lugossy and classmates Erika Wollman and Maggie Maretz are next year's captains.

Farber was the Rookie of the Year, Wollman was selected as the team's Most Improved Player and Bowie and Dani Moubayed received the Coach's award.

"The freshmen and sophomore classes are outstanding," Hallac said. "Rachel, Erika and Maggie will be outstanding captains and great leaders. There's good talent coming back and Whitney Farber was phenomenal and will be a force to be reckoned with for the next three years."

Dani Moubayed said, "I they will hold their own because they have more experience and the new captains will do a great job. They have talent and are great leaders and I think the team will do well next year."

Bowie said, "We're losing a couple of seniors but the returning players will step it up, know what to expect and have a good year. Hopefully, this year will drive next year's team to do better."

Hutchins said, "It's really sad leaving soccer because I've played it since I was 5. The team has a lot more experience and they will definitely make states next year."