‘People around the league would probably hate her if she wasn’t just so nice,’ said her coach of the three-sport Panther standout.
There’s really no position that Seattle Prep girls soccer standout Bea Franklin can’t play.
And there’s really not a sport she can’t excel at, according to Panthers girls soccer coach Andy Hendricks.
Although she primarily anchored Seattle Prep’s back line as a senior, Franklin also moved up top to play forward at times. Throughout her career, she’s played defender, midfielder and forward, and one could say she’s done it all for the program.
For her efforts, the University of Notre Dame-bound Franklin has been named The Seattle Times Girls Soccer Player of the Year.
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“She’s a player who reads the game really, really well and then can execute on that,” Hendricks said. “She could transform moments in the games and that could be a momentum shifter. I’m not sure how much a student of the game she is, but I think it just comes so naturally to her. And it applies to all sports and everybody’s kind of said that around the school.
“You name the sport, she’s going to be the dominant player in it.”
It’s her adaptability and athleticism that allow her to excel at any position on the field. But it was more her can-do attitude that most noticed. It helped her become a first-team All-Metro League basketball player. She plays tennis in the spring.
“She just plays the game with sheer joy,” Hendricks said. “It’s just a lot of fun for her. That kind of permeates the program.”
Franklin, a four-year starter, provided leadership throughout her career, helping Prep put up a 77-6-3 record. Most seasons saw her alternate between center back on defense and either attacking midfielder or forward, and she produced 59 goals and 26 assists during her career.
“Bea has a mindset that can switch on to either of those positions,” Hendricks said. “Whatever she’s in, she’s going to do what she needs to do in those positions. She’s just an athlete.”
This season, Franklin supplied 12 goals and five assists as Prep (19-2-0) fell short of its goal of Class 3A state title, but reached the state quarterfinals only to fall to Metro League Mountain Division rival Holy Names 2-1.
“This season didn’t finish how we wanted it to, but I’m just grateful for the four years I’ve had,” said Franklin, who won a state title as a freshman in 2015 and was part of third-place team in 2016. “I think Prep soccer is a really special program. It definitely went by fast, and I wish I could start over again. But I’m pretty lucky that I get to keep playing in college.”
Franklin will likely focus on playing center-back when she gets to South Bend, Ind. She will play in the High School Girls All-American Game for seniors in Orlando, Fla., on Dec. 1 along with Prep teammate Helena Reischling and two other Washington players (Issaquah’s Kate Wilkinson and Camas’ Maddie Kemp).
“The line I used when I introduced her when she signed her letter of intent to Notre Dame, ‘People around the league would probably hate her if she wasn’t just so nice,’ ” Hendricks said. “She’s a kid you didn’t want to play against for 80 minute of high-school soccer, but afterwards she’s going to give you a hug and move on. It’s really a great attitude to have in sports. She gave her all, she gave her best. She didn’t play with any regrets.”
2018 Star Times girls soccer team
Julia Causbie, Holy Names Academy, F, So.
A matchup nightmare with her size, speed and dangerous left foot, Causbie tallied 22 goals as the Cougars reached a state final for the first time since 1999. Causbie had three goals in two Final Four state matches as her team settled for second in Class 3A.
Lanie Martin, Mercer Island, F, Sr.
The Islanders’ top offensive player scored timely goals all season for the unbeaten KingCo 3A/2A regular-season champions, finishing with 12 goals and four assists. Martin was a big reason MI reached the Class 3A state quarterfinals.
Nikayla Copenhaver, Liberty, F, Jr.
The talented playmaker supplied 16 goals and 17 assists during another championship run for the Patriots. Copenhaver had two goals in 4-1 Class 2A championship-match win over Sehome.
Hailey Still, Jefferson, F, Jr.
The two-time NPSL Olympic Division MVP amassed 31 goals and two assists this season for the Raiders. Still has committed to play for the University of Washington.
Natalie DeGagne, Kennedy Catholic, MF, Jr.
The NPSL Cascade Division Most Valuable Player provided 22 goals and five assists for the Lancers, who were the highest-scoring team (43 goals) in the division.
Laura Pierson, Tahoma, MF, Sr.
The Bears got serious production from Pierson in her four-year career as she earned NPSL Cascade Division first-team honors for the third consecutive year. The University of Idaho signee helped Tahoma win the Cascade Division, notching five goals and 14 assists.
Helena Reischling, Seattle Prep, MF, Sr.
The University of Washington signee supplied 18 goals and 18 assists for the Panthers. Reischling gave the lineup plenty of versatility and helped them reach the state quarterfinals after the team won the Metro League Mountain Division title at 10-0-0.
Kate Wilkinson, Issaquah, D, Sr.
The Eagles center back was the primary reason her team limited KingCo 4A opponents to three goals in the regular season. She scored two goals and added an assist.
Emily Schwartz, Archbishop Murphy, D, Sr.
The Wildcats’ four-year letter winner stabilized the defense and still found time to tally eight goals as her team finished third in their first season in the WesCo 3A /2A Conference. Schwartz helped the defense allow just 10 goals in WesCo play.
Amy Braman, Mercer Island, GK, Jr.
Braman, who played 18 of 19 matches, was part of 14 shutouts and had a 0.26 goals-against average by allowing just four goals all season.
James Valles, Mercer Island, coach
Just one season removed from the school’s first Class 3A state title last fall, Valles guided the Islanders to a KingCo 3A/2A title and an unbeaten regular season at 15-0-1. MI finished 17-1-1 after falling to Prairie in the state quarterfinals in a shootout.