December 5, 2023

Mount Dora Christian Academy Soccer Teams Eager To Defend District Championships

2.3 min read| Published On: December 5th, 2023|

By Kyle Coppola

Mount Dora Christian Academy Soccer Teams Eager To Defend District Championships

2.3 min read| Published On: December 5th, 2023|

The Mount Dora Christian Academy (MDCA) Bulldogs are gearing up for a formidable defense of their 2023 boys and girls varsity soccer district championships. The teams, under the guidance of Head Coach Clayton McDaniel, are determined to replicate last year’s success in the current 2023/2024 season.

(Last years boys team won a district championship in a very memorable year for MDCA Athletics.)

(For the first time in history the boys and girls teams would claim district championships. That has never happened before. Coach McDaniel is a big reason behind the teams success.)

Coach McDaniel, who leads both the Boys and Girls teams, reflected on the unique journey each team experienced in clinching their respective championships. “The feelings when winning both championships were so different,” McDaniel said. “With the boys, it’s been a four-year journey with a lot of ups and downs. We improved each year and ultimately had it come together last year.”

(Emmi Bowman has been a great goalie for MDCA. She has only given up four goals all season and all of them to The Villages. Overall she is a solid player for the Bulldogs.)

The Boys team boasts key returning players, including leading goal scorer Carter Faden and midfielder Zander Schaefer. The defensive lineup is anchored by Connor Calfy, Dean Schaefer, and goalie Easton Workman.

(Zander Shaefer leads the team in goals this season along with Caden Faden. Both boys have three goals a piece entering this week.)

McDaniel shared insights into the Girls team’s success as well, stating, “For the girls team, we inherited a lot of talent, and it was my first year coaching them last year. The girls just needed some guidance, and all of them elevated their games throughout the season.” Despite losing some key players, the team is returning 8 starters, led by defenders Cora Welter and Kayden Vidler, goalie Emmi Bowman, and forwards Hallie Edwards and Riley Conlan.

(Katie Bayly is chased by two defenders. She leads the team in assists and goals along with Riley Conlan.)

The MDCA Lady Bulldogs, displaying a robust start to the season, have Riley Conlan and Katie Bayly leading the charge with a combined total of 14 goals. While their only loss was against the always formidable Villages Lady Buffalo, the girls showcased a commendable performance.

On the boys’ side, freshman Zander Schaefer has been a standout player, contributing three goals along with fellow striker Carter Faden.

(Dean Schaefer shoots the ball towards the net.)

With the football team securing a conference championship this season, there’s a collective hope for success across MDCA’s athletic programs. As Coach McDaniel emphasized, “Much like the football team, we hope the soccer teams can both find success this year. Go Bulldogs!”

The MDCA soccer teams are poised to face the challenges of the upcoming season, aiming to etch their names once again as district champions in 2023.

(Goalie Easton Workman has made eighteen saves so far this season and only giving up three goals so far.)

PHOTO CREDIT – Malcolm Yawn and George Horsford

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About the Author: Kyle Coppola

Kyle Coppola was born in Newton, Massachusetts and received his Bachelor of Fine Arts in Communications from Curry College in 2016. After traveling to Florida on a family vacation, he decided he could not get enough of the warm weather and made the move from snowy Massachusetts to central Florida 8 years ago.

For the last decade Kyle has gained valuable experience in social media content creation, marketing and sales, writing, video production, sports announcing and even broadcasting for local radio stations, such as FM 102.9 in The Villages and FM 91.5 in Massachusetts. Every year he volunteers at The Villages Charter High School as a play-by-play sports announcer for the football games as well as a public address announcer for the basketball games, including the annual Battle at The Villages Tournament.

Outside the office Kyle is a husband and father to two beautiful girls along with their cat. In his spare time he likes to spend time with his family, travel, play golf and swim. He is also a huge sports junkie and even bigger motorsports fan and loves to attend racing events when he can.

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