BRISTOL - For the Bristol Eastern girls soccer team, junior attacking forward Myah Croze was dominant on the field all season.
Her performance was recognized with her being named to the Class L All-State team for the first time in her career and also helped propel the Lancers to their most successful season since 2010.
Bristol Eastern finished with an 8-8-2 record and was eliminated in the second round of the Class L state tournament in a heartbreaking 1-0 overtime loss at home to Joel Barlow.
Much of its success can be attributed to Croze.
As both a three-year varsity starter for the Lancers and a three-time all-conference selection, Croze’s success on the field has been stellar. Her easy-going personality has also helped the Lancers build chemistry in their second season under head coach Scott Redman.
“I like to have fun,” Croze said. “There’s times when you need to be serious and there are times when you should have fun. It is high school soccer and you need to remember that when you’re older.”
While she may joke around with her teammates and make sure everybody is in good spirits, it hasn’t impacted her level of play on the field.
“She’s an extremely talented tactical player,” Redman said. “She works at her game year-round. She prides herself on being a finisher and she loves the role of being the go-to player and the one who hits game-winners or converts in a high-pressured situation.”
With 16 goals and eight assists this season, Croze has paced the Bristol Eastern offense, playing a part in 24 of its 38 total goals.
Her play also helped lead the Lancers to the CCC South-Patriot Division title, their first divisional championship since 2010 and the second in school history, something she and her team set as a goal.
“Last season I remember saying I wanted to win the CCC,” Croze said. “And we did that this year. And we made it into the state tournament. Those are two things I will remember when I’m older that as a junior we made it that far.”
What made the divisional title even better was that assistant coaches Angelina Saporito and Danielle Kriscenski were on the team that won it in 2010.
“I know we have two coaches that made it their year playing, but we haven’t made it since then,” Croze said. “And when we made it I know that when I’m older I’ll be like [Angelina and Danielle] and look back and be like, ‘that was my year when we won it.’”
In the state tournament game against Bullard Havens Tech, Bristol Eastern ran away with a 6-0 victory and Croze had four goals to make sure the Lancers secured the win.
Along with the conference championship and state tournament win, being named to the All-State team was another goal Croze had set and reached.
The individual success of Croze has been secondary to the overall success of Bristol Eastern.
Croze is soft-spoken about her personal accomplishments, something her teammates respect greatly.
“Not only is she an individual player, but she’s also a team player,” Lancers senior captain Brooke Dauphinee said. “She helps others on the field along with herself and that’s why she’s had success.”
The next goal Croze has set for herself is to break the school’s all-time scoring record of 42 goals set by Christi Carone, which Croze is three goals away from tying.
“I would like to beat the school record,” Croze said. “That’d be awesome. And I’d like to make it farther in the state tournament. We were really close this year.”
For her teammates, seeing all of her hard work pay off would be just as exciting for them.
“That’d be amazing,” Foreman said. “I just love seeing my teammates do great and I know how much it’d mean to her, so that would be great to see that.”
Much of the goal-scoring ability comes from Croze’s tenacity to get the ball in game-deciding situations.
With seven of the team’s eight game-winning goals, Croze’s ability to thrive under pressure has been remarkable.
“In the face of adversity some kids kind of buckle under the pressure,” Redman said. “But she’s a kid that you can tell it’s okay and that [she] says we can get through it and her teammates thrive off of that too.”
Croze is expecting herself to put in the work needed in order to improve next season and to once again help lead her team to a successful season.
“I’d say her stats can go up even more next year,” Dauphinee said. “She’s going to be the star player on the field, even though she has already been.”
With all of the high school success, Croze is already looking at colleges to play soccer at.
Her three seasons at Bristol Eastern suggest Croze still has an abundance of potential she has yet to reach.
“She’s a tough player and she’s going to do well at the next level too,” Redman said. “It’s going to depend on how much she wants to push herself at the next level when it gets more challenging. I think she can have a lot of success, though.”
Dan Orencole can be reached at or On Twitter: @OrencoleDan