Local boy's soccer teams expecting strong seasons
Head Coach: Jake Lezak
Assistant coaches: Dan Lane, Nick Soprano, John Laidlaw
Record last season: 14-4-2
Returning Players: Sam Vergason, Marshal Leblanc, Nick Pane are returning starters. Alex Cuno, Justin Mayo, Neil Gilson, Macen Raupers, Jake Townsand, Jarett Priester, and Tyler Solomon are returning lettermen.
Newcomers: Everyone else from Freshmen to Senior that wasn't with us last year on Varsity. Some of the underclassmen saw time on varsity last year but did not letter. It's a Team where everyone is expected to contribute this season.
Player to watch: There is never just one with us. They will all contribute something to the game every game and in training.
Thoughts on this year's team: It will be a very tough seasoned team by the end of the season. We expect to look at everyone that is ready to play on varsity to contribute. Some of the younger players may get called on earlier than they expect. It will be a different Athens team than people expect. We've had to change quite a bit based on what we have coming in. I hope that the adjustments are made quickly and the players can handle what we are doing. Expectations are always high. We have eight starters to replace. Four of our starters were on defense. That was a tough defense to penetrate. The last two seasons they posted a .65 GAA and had 22 shutouts. The hardest part for us was scoring goals last season. Obviously, we have to replace our defenders first. We need to make sure that teams can't find the net. Once that is taken care of we will focus on the scoreboard. If we play together and work off of each other's strengths during the season we will find success. The hardest part for a team this young is to trust the guys around them. They need game time in order to gel together and learn how to work with each other. Unfortunately, We don't have the entire season to do that in!!!! The coaching staff is pleased with the work ethic of this year's team and their fitness level. We are demanding a lot out of them in a short period of time. I'm really hoping that teams look at what we lost last year and are expecting to pound on us. The boys will be ready.
Thoughts on the league this season: I see NEB as the team to beat with Troy very close to them at the top. NEB brings a lot of experience and talent back to the field. I am yet to see what our team will do against the tough teams.
Northeast Bradford Panthers
Head Coach: Neal Snyder
Assistant coaches: John Nolt
Record last season: 11-5-1
Returning Players: Dylan Chapman, Jacob Beaudoin, Alan Vough, Cody Poust, Jeremiah Harvey, Bryan Ford, Aaron Pifer, Jesse Stroud, Colton Snyder, Isaiah McPherson, Justin Beaudoin, James Zajac, Hunter Condusta, Zach Darling, Ryan Horn, Chris Wilson, Tucker Antisdal.
Newcomers: Cory Souto, Andrew Jampo, Jakayo Frye, Anthony Jampo, Todd Bonin
Thoughts on this year's team: Should have a solid team this year as long as we stay healthy and injury free! Tough time of the year to stay healthy with the transition of seasons and school.
Thoughts on the league this season: The NTL is always solid, can win or lose on any given day! Should be an interesting season.
Head Coach: Glenn Murrelle
Assistant coaches: John Blackman
Returning Players: Kyle Lake (12), Walter Wampole (12), Christian Keene (12), Guiseppe Scavone (11), Seth Murrelle (11), Phillip Wood (11),Tony Aranda (11), Austin Rowe (10), Adam Moore (10), John Northrup (10), Nate Williams (10)
Newcomers: Juan Velasquez (11), Cuyler Kochin (11), Marshall Higley (10), Jake Wheeler (9), Mithchell Ward (9), Michael Ward (9), Michael Shaw (9), John Blackman (9)
Player to watch: Nate Williams, Adam Moore, Seth Murrelle
Thoughts on this year's team: The numbers are low and physical size of team is small. The returning players will have to play physical and with a lot of confidence due to seven former players graduating this past year.
Towanda Black Knights
Head Coach: Greg Neyer
Assistant coaches: Jaime Castillo (volunteer)
Record last season: 0-17-1
Returning Players: Talon Curry (12), Tye Fowler (12), Matt McGee (12), Pat Murphy (12), Mitch Patel (12), Stephen Seibert (12), Matt Murphy (11), Brad Sparbanie (11), Keegan McNeal (10), Devin Patel (10).
Newcomers: Garrett Johnson (11), Dawson Wright (10), Tyler Basse (9), Jarod Boardman (9), Chandler Dunn (9)
Player to watch: Talon Curry - Talon plays a key role in the defense and will help the keeper tremendously by keeping the ball out of the eighteen and stopping offensive strikes.
Thoughts on this year's team: After a disappointing season last year, the Black Knights are ready to start fresh. With strong returning players and skillful new players, the Black Knights want to turn things around and have a successful season.
Thoughts on the league this season: The competition in the NTL is always high. The rivalries amongst teams always make the season interesting and fun to watch.
Coach's name: Steve Saxton
Assistant coaches: Rick Wilson,Gavin Bristol
Record last season:12-5-2 NTL East Champs
Returning Players: Gordy Calkins (Sr.), Trevor Hodge (Sr.), Jordan Hodlofski (Sr.), Shane Miller (Sr.), Aaron Smith (Sr.), Alfredo Torres (Sr.), Josh Tower (Sr.). Luke Horning (Jr.), Evan Polly (Jr.), Thomas Swain (Jr.).
Newcomers: Bradin Heimbach (Jr.), Jason Esaias (Jr.), Taylor Hoffman (Jr.), Chris Smith (Jr.), Jason Watkins (Jr.), Josh Purcell (Jr.), Jarred Murray (So.), Collon Binford (Fr.), Dane Smith (Fr.).
Player to watch: Alfredo Torres
Thoughts on this year's team: We have a strong core of returning players. Depth seems to be our strength. We expect to compete for the NTL East Title
Thoughts on the league this season: Expect the usual mix of competition throughout the league.
Head Coach: Ron Mase
Returning players: Reece Correll, Ryan Harer, Peter Kutbay, Taylor Swingle, Ben Wilson, James Walker, Nathaniel Wilston, Josh King, Cody Schmauter, Jacob Spring, Jess Gregory, Seth Atkins, Eli Colon, Matt Orgitano, Tyler Upham, Dalton Litzelman, Chandler Correll, Eric Kreger.
Key newcomers: Dallas Dziuba, Sean Upham, Jonathan Baker.
Coaches' comments on the team: I only lost three kids last year so we should be pretty competitive. I always ask to be competitive from the kids.
Coaches' thoughts on the league: I don't know about the East side they are always tough for us, I think we should be pretty competitive with them. I'm feeling good about the team.
Northern Potter Panthers
Head Coach: Mike Morgan
Assistant coach: Derek Erway
Record last season: 11-8-2 (3rd in NTL West, Lost in District 9 semi-final in penalty shoot-out to Karns City)
Returning Players: Aaron (AJ) Schweigart (12, midfielder, defender), Dylan Walaski (12, goalie, midfielder), Derek Craft (12, defender), Hunter Hess (12), Charles Plank (12), JD Rennells (12), Kris Wyne (12), Aaron Olney (11, defender), Matt Morgan (11)
Newcomers: Payden Bice, Tyler Cowburn, Austin Kosa, Dakota Hall, Cheyenne Hall
Player to watch: Dylan Walaski, Hunter Hess, Charles Plank and Matt Morgan
Thoughts on this year's team: AJ has started every varsity game since his freshman year. Versatile player with speed and experience. Walaski started every game in net in 2010 and 2011 - career mark as a goalie is 24-13-2. Craft has earned a reputation of being a hard-nosed player. Hess is a very versatile player. Used as a sweeper back and as a striker during the 2011 season. Ended the season with five goals. Plank ended the 2011 season with 12 goals and seven assists as a starter. Rennells will be used all over the place like a utility player in baseball. He can shoot with either foot. Wyne can play goalie or can be used as a passing mid-fielder. Soft feet and big build make him a deadly passer because he is hard to knock off the ball. Olney suffered a broken collar bone near the end of the season that sidelined him for five games. It will be nice to see him back to start the 2012 season. Morgan had eight goals and 12 assists in 2011. Look for him to have a breakout year. The newcomers are all scrappy and tough players that won't back down to pressure. Both Bice and Cowburn each scored varsity goals and along with Kosa played key minutes in 2011. Dakota and Cheyenne are looking good during preseason practices. I look for us to be right in the thick of the NTL West title hunt after being dethroned by Wellsboro in 2011. We are returning a lot of experience and speed at some key positions. Another run at the D9 Class A title is not out of the question either.
Wellsboro Green Hornets
Head Coach: John Shaffer
Assistant coaches: Todd Fitch and James Langs
Record last season: 11-8
Returning Players: Mitch Snyder, Dan Brooks, Gillian Alafoginis, Spencer Kreisler, Luke Rudy, Cody DeHaas
Newcomers: Tucker Worthington, Dawson Prough, Dylan Prough, Brandon Owlett, Joe Allen, Eric Stemcosky
Thoughts on this year's team: We are a young team looking to continue our success from last season. We are trying to replace the nine seniors that graduated. Hopefully we will be able to compete with the competition in the NTL.
Thoughts on the league this season: The league should be very strong this year. Liberty only lost one senior from last year. They play a very physical style and with their big bodies will hope to impose their style of play on the game. Northeast Bradford returns most of their team and they are very talented. They should be the team to beat this year.
Coach's name: Mark Gee
Assistant coaches: Brett Smalley
Record last season: 3-14
Returning Players: Logan Everett (Sr.), Chris Learn (Sr.), Kyle Colegrove (Jr.), Herman Briggs (Jr.), Trevor Mcwhorter (Jr.), Curt Heck (Sr.), Billy Barnes (So.), Tyrus Hamblin (Jr.), Nick Volino (So.).
Newcomers: Carl Gorg (So.), Josh Dilly (Sr.), Canyon Black (Sr.), Kyle Bennett (Sr.), Matt Learn (Fr.), Wyatt Gorg (Fr.), Trevor Smith (Sr.).
Player to watch: Chris Learn, Logan Everett
Thoughts on this year's team: We will be a well-rounded team with a lot of senior leadership. We will be returning nine starters from last year's team.
Thoughts on the league this season: Should be a very competitive league this year.
Sullivan County Griffins
Coach's name: Chris Koschak
Assistant coaches: Alice Carpenter and Marc Lewis
Record last season: 13-6
Returning Players: Thomas Blasi (12), Ethan Craft (12), Matthew Daily (11), Jacob Gavitt (11), Luke Iarkowski (11), Jeffrey Jordan (10), Aaron Lewis (12), Zachary Meyer (12), Trey Richlin (12), Doug Shrimp (12), Joey Stark (10), Adam Szklanka (10), Derek Wilkins (12), and Conner Wylie (11)
Newcomers: Dylan Ammerman (9), Charles Cerulli (9), Antonio Cruz (10), Joshua Gavitt (10), Evan Lewis (9), Dakota Preston (10), Jacob Richlin (9), Bradley Ruhl (10), and Tyler Sturgis (12)
Coach's name: James Howey
Record last season: 4-11
Returning Players: Austin Beebe, Kevin Blakeslee, Jacob Coddington, Luke Hoose, Adam Layman, Steven Lounsbury, Shane Snover, Josh Welch, Zach Worthington
Newcomers: Ian Moon, 7 Freshmen trying out
Player to watch: Luke Hoose in goal, Steven Lounsbury, Adam Layman, and Zach Worthington
Thoughts on this year's team: With two seniors and several freshmen trying out, we will be a younger squad this year. There is some travel league level experience coming onto the team and a large core of athletes coming back from last year's team. The young men are working very hard and in doing so are creating that 'chemistry' that a lot of good teams have as the basis for their success. I am excited about the possibilities for this squad.
Thoughts on the league this season: There are the perennial power teams within our league that are on our schedule. I believe that we can run with any of them.
Coach's name: Tara Hogan
Record last season: 5-10-0
Returning Players: Austin Trengo (12), Sean Lloyd (12), Andrew Zobel (12), Mike Horrocks (12), Joe Giovenco (12), Jeff Czebiniak (12), Jacob Hazen (12)
Newcomers: Tanner Cantrell (10), Zack Richart (12), Matt Dibble (12), Cody Czebiniak (9), Jake Ovedovitz (9), Austin Blauvelt (9), Gary Moorehead (9), Juan San-Martin (9), Chris Shaffer (12), Kyle Kinsley (10), Dawson Morey (9).
Player to watch: Austin Trengo, Andrew Zobel, Tanner Cantrell, Juan San-Martin
Thoughts on this year's team: As you can see, this year's team is a full of newcomers. We have seven veterans that are going to help lead the new guys. With so many new players we have our work cut out for us. The biggest thing we are struggling with is getting back into shape. A lot of the newcomers haven't played before so I am hoping they pick up the game quickly. Thankfully my returning players are good with taking things into their own hands and look to help their new teammates. I am not quite sure of what we are capable of this season. Having so many new players can work against us but I am hopeful. I think we absolutely can be successfulâ¦there are just a lot of piece of the puzzle that aren't in place just yet. I look forward to another successful season with a great group of players.
Thoughts on the league this season: I am sure I will have more thoughts on the league after our coaching meeting tomorrow. As of now, I am aware of the teams that lost a lot of their starting lineups due to kids graduating. Unfortunately, I am in the same boat. I will be looking out for the same teams that always seem to have strong starting line ups and plenty of subs.