Streberger Steps Into Larger Leadership Role as GPN Seeks to Reign Again

By Keith Dunlap
Special for

April 26, 2024

GROSSE POINTE — Amelia Streberger is already getting a sneak preview about what her future in soccer could look like one day. 

Greater DetroitA senior standout for reigning Division 2 champion Grosse Pointe North, Streberger said she has thought about getting into coaching one day, which is good because it seems like she’s gotten a head start on that type of leadership over the past year since the Norsemen claimed what some would argue was an unexpected Finals title last June.

Last year’s head coach, Olivia Dallaire, stepped down during the offseason and a large crop of seniors graduated, leaving a good portion of the roster to be comprised by 13 incoming freshmen. 

“I feel like I’ve had to step up as a leader on and off of the field,” Streberger said. “Especially since these freshmen coming in have never played (varsity) soccer before.”

But as far as finding a player to help guide younger ones and ease the program into a coaching transition, you’d be hard pressed to find a better person for the job than Streberger. 

After helping North win its first Finals title, Streberger, a midfielder, was named to the all-state Dream Team. She has a future in college soccer, as Streberger signed in November to play next for Detroit Mercy. 

Now, she’s back this spring to not only lead a young team that has a first-year coach in Thalu Masindi, but also try and show the state her team can be strong again after last year’s unanticipated run. North had finished fifth in the Macomb Area Conference Red during the regular season with only four wins entering the MHSAA Tournament. 

Streberger accepts her championship medal.Streberger admitted that even some in the Grosse Pointe community thought it was a “Cinderella” team that defied the odds, but said there was talent on the roster last year that is back for more this spring, including fellow captains Gabby Miller and Alyssa Burney. 

“It was through hard work and dedication,” Streberger said of the championship. “It was not through luck or anything.”

When he was interviewing for the vacant head coaching job after Dallaire stepped down, Masindi said one part of the interview process was interacting with the team –and he quickly found Streberger is just as “soccer crazy” as he is as the two got to know one another. 

As he has transitioned into the role, Masindi said Streberger has been a rock to rely on.

“She shows ownership with helping out with some of the practices,” he said. “To make sure the intensity is high and she’s demanding more of her players, and also showing the freshmen that this is what you need to do for your four years to show growth.”

While her leadership talents are obvious, Masindi said so is what she brings to the team technically.

“I know when she has the ball at her feet, she’s confident and calm,” he said. “She’s always going to be a threat. When she collects the ball, she knows she is going to be a difference.”

Streberger said she’s been playing soccer “since she could walk,” especially since she has three older siblings who played the game including older brother Jack, who played collegiately at Butler.

Amelia Streberger said there were constant battles among her siblings in the family’s basement, where they would try to score on mini-nets for hours.

“We had so many holes in the wall,” she said. “It was crazy.”

Given what she has accomplished for the North soccer community, all those holes obviously have been worth it. 

Streberger still has plenty of games ahead as a player, with more than a month left of her senior season and a college career upcoming. Beyond that she envisions staying involved in the game, and this spring has provided her some valuable insight if coaching is her next soccer calling.

“I’ve definitely thought about it with my club teammates,” she said. “We’ve definitely talked about it, because it’s something we love so much. We’d love to give off what we love and teach younger kids.”

Keith DunlapKeith Dunlap has served in Detroit-area sports media for more than two decades, including as a sportswriter at the Oakland Press from 2001-16 primarily covering high school sports but also college and professional teams. His bylines also have appeared in USA Today, the Washington Post, the Detroit Free Press, the Houston Chronicle and the Boston Globe. He served as the administrator for the Oakland Activities Association’s website from 2017-2020. Contact him at [email protected] with story ideas for Oakland, Macomb and Wayne counties.

PHOTOS (Top) Grosse Pointe North's Amelia Streberger (7) works for possession during last season's Division 2 Final. (Middle) Streberger accepts her championship medal.

McBain Northern Michigan Christian's VanNoord Building on Career Excellence

By Geoff Kimmerly senior editor

May 13, 2024

Jada VanNoord entered her senior season this spring on the MHSAA girls soccer career goal list with 108 over her first three seasons at McBain Northern Michigan Christian, and after scoring 40 with 63 total points in 2023.

She also was just shy of making the career points list after making the single-season list as a sophomore with 52 in 2022.

VanNoord has signed to continue her career at Cornerstone University.

See below for more recent additions to the girls soccer record book, and click the heading to see the record book in full.  

Girls Soccer

Sophomore Macy Freeman became the first from Otisville LakeVille Memorial to be listed in the girls soccer record book when she scored all eight goals in her team’s win over Flint Carman-Ainsworth on April 29, 2022, and she was added for the second-highest scoring game in history with 10 goals last May 12 against Marlette. Freeman also was added for 43 goals total as a sophomore and 39 as a junior, and she entered this season on the career goals list as well with 81.

Brighton Charyl Stockwell’s Cassie Hall earned a pair of record book entries for her offensive performance as a junior in 2022. She made the single-season goals list with 55 and single-season points list with 60.

Although her 224 saves as a senior in 2022 fell just shy of making the single-season list, Parchment goalkeeper Gabrielle Novak finished her career with 713 over three seasons and 51 games – with 2020 canceled because of COVID-19. She was joined that spring by senior Kasey Leckie, who made the single-season goals list with 32.

Grace Hewitt became the first West Michigan Aviation Academy player to be listed for career goals, as she tallied 75 from 2019-22 (with 2020 canceled). She also was added for 32 as a senior.

Remus Chippewa Hills’ Karley Densmore made 36 saves against Big Rapids on April 25, 2022, tied for fifth-most in one match, and her 292 over 17 games for the season rank third. Additionally, teammate Hayley Gomber was added for five assists in a game against Mason County Central on April 7, 2022. Both were juniors.

Kelila Rustin made the single-season saves list in 2022 with 251 over 17 games. She was a sophomore at Ionia.

Allison Johnson earned Howard City Tri County’s first girls soccer record book entry in 2021, scoring 30 goals over 19 games. She graduated in 2023.

Schoolcraft’s Hannah Thompson totaled 18 record book entries over three varsity seasons, despite missing her sophomore year which was canceled due to COVID-19. The 2022 graduate five times had a single-game high of eight goals, and as a senior she bested her state record for points with 99 – despite falling just a few goals short of her state record in that category, with a second-place 83. She finished with 130 goals, second all-time, over a combined 54 games, and a fifth-highest 240 points. She’s playing at Eastern Michigan.

Sterling Heights 2023 graduate Mikalah Lewis earned a pair of record book entries over her final two seasons. The first was for 34 goals as a junior in 2022, and she tied for third-most assists in a game on April 10 of last season with six against Center Line.

Lily Usher capped her three-year varsity career at Owosso last spring with 60 more saves than anyone over a career in MHSAA history. She tops that list with 773 over 49 games, with her 268 as a junior in 2022 added as well – and that season she also tied her single-game high with 35.

Layne Palmer had one of the busiest goalkeeping nights in MHSAA history April 21, 2023, when she saved 43 shots from Utica Ford during a 6-0 loss. The Port Huron senior’s saves remain tied for third-most for one game.

Grace Graham capped her Laingsburg career in 2021 by leading the Wolfpack to its first Regional Final appearance – and made the record book for 39 goals and also 51 total points.

Cheboygan’s Kenzie Burt is playing college basketball at Aquinas College, but she left her mark on her high school soccer program as a senior in 2023. Burt made the record book with 33 goals and 53 points total.

Jessica Peters earned Dryden’s first girls soccer entry since 2012 with 48 goals as a senior in 2023, over 19 games. She’s continuing at St. Clair County Community College.

Lydia Kruis and Litzy Ramirez capped their three-season Comstock varsity careers last year with performances among the best all-time in the sport. Among 10 record book entries, Kruis was added for 74 goals (third all-time) and 83 points (sixth) as a senior and 158 goals for her career (ninth). Her eight goals last May 17 against Buchanan tied for fourth-most in one game. Ramirez graduated with seven record book listings, with her six assists against Buchanan that game tied for third-most with her 47 for the season setting the MHSAA record. Her 86 career assists tied for ninth.

Jaidyn Veldhouse led Grandville Calvin Christian to another successful run last spring. A senior now, she made record lists with 37 goals and 52 points as the Squires finished 17-1-3. She will continue at Saginaw Valley State.

Isabella Pool’s junior season last spring included a highlight against Marshall. Although her Coldwater team took a 5-0 loss, Pool saved 39 shots – fifth-most for one match in MHSAA history.

Lutheran Westland added its second athlete to this record book, and first since 2005, as Madilyn Webb finished her three-season varsity career with 48 goals and 53 points last spring and 105 goals over her three seasons. She also scored 33 goals as a junior and seven in one game against Brighton Charyl Stockwell Academy. She’s continuing at Concordia-Ann Arbor.

PHOTO McBain Northern Michigan Christian's Jada VanNoord (20) steps into a kick during a May 1 game against Clare. (Photo courtesy of the Cadillac News.)