Soccer’s young core looks promising for season

Soccer%27s+young+core+looks+promising+for+season

Lisa Drexler

Captain Conor Quigley works hard to help boys soccer beat Blake 2-0.

By Nathan Gertler, Staff Writer

 

Each year, varsity sports teams lose athletes due to graduation, but acquire new valuable additions to the team.  The boys soccer team is no exception as it was left with 10 roster spots to fill after last season and an opportunity to rebuild a younger and better team.

This different and new-looking team hopes to repeat as 4A South division champions, improve on the 10-4-1 record from the previous season, and seek to redeem itself from the disappointing defeat to Richard Montgomery in the first round of the playoffs last season.

“We graduated some talented players, but I feel as though we are reloading rather than rebuilding,” varsity head coach Arnold Tarzy said.  “We have a number of additions to this year’s team that will be great contributors.”

Senior defender and captain Conor Quigley is looked upon as a leader for his team, on and off the field.

“I think the main goal and expectation for this team is to win,” Quigley said. “Individually, I’m trying my hardest to push my teammates to be the best they can be and make sure that we maintain a positive and fun team atmosphere.”

Senior goalie Kyle Solomon is very enthusiastic about the change in personnel and feels the additions to the team can bring with them a new edge to the team.

“This year’s team is a very cohesive unit that works hard every minute of the game to fuel our success,” Solomon said.

Seniors Noah Jankel and Chavin DeSilva are also significant additions to the team, along with other former JV players such as Austin Hsu and Dennis Kim.

“Noah brings great skill and speed on the wing, Chavin brings needed stability in the midfield, Austin Hsu is a rock in the back, and Dennis Kim is a work horse,” Solomon said.  “All of the other guys have brought their own respective additions to the team.”

According to Quigley, the Bulldogs don’t have as many superstars as they did last year, but he believes the team’s discipline and determination will supplement their loss.

“The team isn’t as flashy as last year,” Quigley said.  “You might not see us put up seven goals in a game, but you won’t see us give up many either.  It might seem like we are outplayed in some games, but I can promise you that we won’t be outworked—effort is something we pride ourselves in.”

Even with the influx of new young players and the loss of many seniors last year, Tarzy does not seem too concerned with how the season will turn out.

“Experience is overrated in high school,” Tarzy said. “Almost all of our players play at a high level of club soccer for years, so this is nothing new to them.”

The Bulldogs have started the season strongly with a 2-1 record, which included shutout wins on the road over Northwest 3-0 Sept. 8 and Blake, last season’s number one seed in the county, 2-0 Sept. 15.

Shutting out any team is hard enough for any teams to do in soccer, but to shutout a quality team on the road shows the true prowess the Bulldogs have defensively.  If the Bulldogs can constantly put up stifling defensive efforts, the team will be very difficult to defeat this season.

The team will have its normal, annual challenges from Wootton Sept. 18, Walter Johnson Oct. 1, and Whitman Oct. 14, but Tarzy believes the opposing teams are not the biggest hurdles for them this year.

“I believe that the only obstacle that stands between us and great achievements this season is ourselves,” Tarzy said. “I believe that if we can execute the things I’ve asked of them as a team, we have the overall talent to get the results.”

Tarzy, Solomon, Quigley and the rest of the squad truly believe that this can be their year.

“As long as we stay focused and fit, I think we can go all the way,” Quigley said. “Just as any year at Churchill, the sky is the limit.”