Emily Janss is Bloomingdale's best player, but she isn't the Bulls' only player.
Depth and balance, staples that have propelled Bloomingdale to a 9-1 record, again proved valuable Thursday in the girls championship game of the King Invitational. The Bulls got goals from four players to beat King 4-0 and capture the tournament title for the second consecutive year.
Janss opened the scoring when she turned a penalty kick into her tournament-high ninth goal. Jennifer Wilson and Ali Helmle added first-half goals to make it 3-0. Ashley Ott scored midway through the second half.
Janss is the only current Bloomingdale player who earned a spot on last year's Times 1994-95 All-County First Team, but if the King tournament is any indication, several teammates will join her at the end of this season. Ott produced four goals and six assists in four tourney games, while Courtney Gilman had four goals and two assists. Helmle scored four goals _ one in each game.
"The fact we're a deep team with a lot of depth helps," Janss said. "We don't have to depend on one person to get the goal in."
Although its offensive prowess is noteworthy, it was Bloomingdale's Wilson _ the stopper _ who was named the tournament's most valuable player. The Bulls outscored opponents 23-0 and limited King to one shot on goal.
"They work really well back there," Janss said of her defenders. "Jennifer cleans up the ball a lot and clears it out. She usually takes on our opponents' strongest person, and that basically takes away their whole offensive line."
With the defense keeping King bottled up, Bloomingdale's scoring opportunities were frequent. Only the admirable play of Lions keeper Molly Winton kept the Bulls from scoring more.
After Janss' successful penalty kick, Wilson scored when her shot bounced off the left post and trickled into the goal. Helmle scored when she headed a bounding ball over Winton and two defenders. Ott reached the back of the net with a crossing shot off her right foot from 25 yards out.
"We want to balance out our attack as much as we can, not just focus on one player," Bloomingdale coach Sue Peet said. "Both teams were pretty tired, so I think it was just a matter of getting through it."
In the consolation final, Durant defeated Plant 6-1.
Top scorer: Emily Janss, Bloomingdale (9 goals).
MVP: Jennifer Wilson, Bloomingdale.
Top scorer: Jeff Prugh, Bloomingdale (5 goals).
MVP: Jeff Foxenberger, Leto.