Brynnan Montfort writes with her right hand but is strictly left-footed when it comes to delivering soccer balls to teammates or into nets.
A backup player most of her high school career, the Center Grove senior promises to play a much more prominent role Saturday when the 13th-ranked Trojans play in a Class 2A semistate hosted by Evansville Harrison.
For a first-year starter like Montfort, the opportunity to play a major role for her school on one of the state’s grandest soccer stages has been worth the wait.
“I’m very excited. I was really hoping we would go again this year because we’ve gone the past two years,” Montfort said. “This season has been fun.”
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Montfort is one of Center Grove’s two team captains, along with defender Nicole Jansen. Their leadership is imperative as the Trojans go for the upset against No. 4 Brebeuf Jesuit in a morning semifinal.
Wrapping up the program’s state-leading 15th regional championship with a 1-0 overtime victory against Mt. Vernon over the weekend, coach Mike Bishop’s squad nonetheless finds itself the underdog this time around.
It will be the second meeting of the season against the Braves, 3-0 winners on the Trojans’ field in late-August.
The Trojans have made it to two consecutive semistates, with the 2007 team the last to break through for a state finals berth.
Jansen also is enjoying an outstanding season. She leads the Trojans in minutes played this season (1,462) to go along with her two assists.
What she, Montfort (six goals, two assists) and the Trojans’ other five senior players supply in terms of leadership can’t be found anywhere on postgame stat sheets.
“Brynnan is a phenomenal kid. A captain who was a great motivator over the summer and a very solid player. Just one of those kids you love having on the team,” Bishop said.
Montfort, who holds a 3.4 grade-point average and has committed to play women’s soccer at Franklin College while majoring in exercise science, originally thought gymnastics would be her athletic calling.
From ages 2-12 Montfort’s life was one of somersaults, cartwheels, flips and handsprings. She started playing soccer as a second-grader, and eventually it won out. Montfort said her time in gymnastics paid dividends both as a soccer player and leader. But then, leadership has always been an area she’s taken great interest in.
“I’ve always had that leadership in me. I try to keep things positive and have the whole team together and support each other. I’ve attended leadership conferences that have taught me how to be more supportive and positive about things,” Montfort said.
“I think (teammates) respond pretty well to it. We’re a very close team.”
Montfort can positively contribute in any number of places for Center Grove. At various points this season she’s played left wing, right wing, attacking wing or even defender.
“I pretty much go where coach tells me to get the playing time. I want to be on the field, and wherever I can help out is where I’ll be,” Montfort said.
“Toward the beginning of the season I had scored a lot. On the junior varsity team my sophomore year I played forward and scored 19 goals that season, but I think I can help from a defensive standpoint, too.”
So does her coach.
“Brynnan is primarily a wing-midfielder, but we’ve put her in the back before,” Bishop said. “She’s kind of a jack-of-all-trades, and that’s a great thing to have.”
THE MONTFORT FILE
Name: Brynnan Montfort
Family: Parents, Jeff and Nicole; sister, Gracyn, 14; brother, Landon, 11
Favorite TV show: “Pretty Little Liars”
Favorite food: Pizza
Favorite movie: “Remember the Titans”
Favorite athlete: Alex Morgan
Favorite team: Real Madrid