MP v. DV rivalry

The rivalry between Mountain Pointe and Desert Vista is palpable across every sport.

When it comes to girls soccer there is a new twist.

With Marvin Hypolite replacing Paul Manoogian at Desert Vista, it has two coaches very familiar with each other on opposite sides of the field.

Hypolite and Mountain Pointe coach Mark Wilson are both coaches with the Ahwatukee Foothills Soccer Club.

They often share ideas and believe in similar styles.

Now if that continues it will be across "enemy lines," so to speak.

"It should be interesting and fun," said Wilson, who is entering his fifth season after coming over from St. Mary's where he coached the boys team. "We have the same system, keeping the ball on the ground and attacking, and it is going to be good."

The first head-to-head meeting was Tuesday and Desert Vista came away with the 2-0 win.

The Pride returns a good contingent of players from last season's Division I state quarterfinal team.

Mountain Pointe will be led by junior midfielder Cera Hassanin and senior midfielder Kailtin Maiefski.

The Pride will have some good defenders in senior Alyson Coker and junior Katelin Warren.

Junior forward Kiley Kipper, freshman defender Jordan Sheehan, and sophomore midfielder Ashley Mutchek.

"We will see," said Wilson, who led the Pride to a state title in 2007-08. "There is a lot of shifting going on (in Division I) with coaches changing, loss of players and injured players."

The new schedule format has the Pride facing three of the state's top programs to fill out its 12-match schedule counted in the power rankings.

The Pride has one of the more difficult schedules as it faces Corona del Sol, Xavier and the Thunder twice, along with Mesquite, Mesa (twice), Dobson, Westwood and Perry.

"The group we are in is the best," Wilson said. "I am thinking one of us four wins (state). It is good for us because we get shots at them, and by the third time I should figure out a way to play them."

The Thunder has a similar schedule, playing Corona, the Pride, Dobson and Mesa twice, along with Notre Dame, Casa Grande and Chandler (twice).

Hypolite is ready for the challenge.

"We are going to play fast and fierce in my system," he said. "It is a quicker style of game than they are used to.

Wilson said he gave his counterpart some advice.

"It usually takes one or two years to get the old (style) out and the new one in," he said. "It takes time for them to understand what it is be fit and structured.

"It is nothing like club and you can't coach like you are coaching club. It's a different array of players with different abilities and backgrounds."

Hypolite, who is from Trinidad and Tobago, has some quality players to start his first year.

Midfielder Jessica Johnson, forward Rachel Ressler, and midfielder Kelly Watson will be counted on heavily.

"We want to play for state championships," Hypolite said. "I think we have the right mix to do that this year."

Horizon Honors, which plays in Division III, Section II, will be led by a strong junior class in Kendall Hickie, Shaila Homan, Anna Mathew, and Casey Trier as the Eagles try to build off last season's playoff appearance.

• Contact writer: (480) 898-7915 or Follow him on Twitter @JSkodaAFN.

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