Boy’s Soccer Looks to Build on Last Season’s Success

By Kyle Emery, Staff Writer

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LAfter a devastating loss to Walter Johnson HS in the last year’s playoffs, the Boy’s Varsity soccer team is ready for a new season. The 2017-2018 team features a combination of talent from new additions and top contributors from last year, that will help further the team’s chances at making it to the state final.

 

This unique, fresh combination of talent and skill will help build upon the team’s performance from last year.

 

“We face more pressure this year,” senior captain Alok Kothari said. “It allows us to capitalize on the other team’s mistakes and really makes us an intimidating team.”

 

One of the biggest deficits the team faces this year is the loss of key players from last year. 13 seniors graduated from the team last year, and filling their talent void is something the team must overcome.

 

“At the beginning of the year I wasn’t sure what to think,” Coach Arnold Tarzy said. “After losing 13 players that graduated last year, I wasn’t really expecting anything going into the season.”

 

In order to overcome this deficit, the team must work to improve in every practice and game. However, it is important for the team to take time in developing each player’s skill to ultimately perform better in dire game situations. The first step to improvement for the team is conditioning.  

 

For a game that runs at least  90 minutes, players must be in tip-top shape in order to keep up with the fast paced play of the game. Fortunately for the Bulldogs, the team is in peak physical condition, putting themselves among the top teams in the state.

 

“Some of the team’s best aspects for this year include the tremendous speed of the team as well as how particularly skillful the team is,” Tarzy said.  

 

Along with speed comes talent. Senior Captains Alok Kothari and Darius Siahpoosh, as well as junior captain Brian Murphy, provide the team with a great set of leadership. They also provide constant motivation which helps improve better the team’s play and improve  chemistry.

 

“Performance wise, I gotta just do what I do,” Siahpoosh said. “But leadership wise, I feel as though it’s an extra responsibility to help my fellow teammates out.”

 

Not only does the team rely on its core of outstanding outfield starters to perform day in and out, but they can also rely on their solid goalkeeper, senior Joel Assal, to help keep their competitors at bay. After verbally committing to Goucher University for soccer, Assal plans to give the team an extra edge in competition this year, in hopes of winning a state championship.

 

“As far as goals go for the season, I want to make the first or second all-state team as well as making it to at least the semifinals this season because of how strong our team is, plus our fantastic coach Tarzi,” Assal said.

 

One of the most important aspects in any team is unity. The bond between teammates is significant in improving the skills and talents between each player, allowing them to perform at their best.

 

“As captain, I just hope to keep everyone focused and motivated towards our goals as a team, so we can have the most successful season possible,” Kothari said.

 

According to Siahpoosh, the team’s biggest competitors for this year are most likely going to be Whitman HS and BCC HS. However, he is confident in the team’s ability to beat anyone in the state.

 

As far as future achievements go, Tarzy is optimistic about the team and wants to focus on one game at a time.

 

“I want the team to win the division first and take the rest of the year step by step,” Tarzy said.