The freshman has made a seamless transition to the varsity squad, posting a team-high eight goals scored for the Patriots.
“Mikayla has made a huge impact on our team and is very dedicated,” head coach Matthew Putnam said. “She has a positive attitude and very coachable.”
Barnes’ role with the Patriots has been different than on her club soccer team at Southern Soccer Academy (SSA) as a defender.
“My responsibility with Paulding County is to communicate with my teammates and help set them up by passing and moving,” Barnes added. “Playing as a defender gives you a better understanding of the opponent which has made it easier to adjust as an attacker.”
Paulding County has averaged more than six goals this season while posting four shutouts.
Barnes, who also plays for the school’s volleyball team, credited her teammates for individual and group success.
“We all work great together and I really love it here.”
Barnes plans to pursue a career as an entrepreneur and run her own baked goods business. The Patriots return to action on Friday at Woodland (Bartow).