After tough 2005, boys soccer team young but experienced

Sean C. Morgan

Of The New Era

Things may be looking up this year for the boys soccer team, which will be young but experienced as it takes the field this fall.

The team has 25 players out right now, Coach Karl Schmidtman said. That’s enough for a varsity and junior varsity team.

The Huskies join the ValCo League with a total of five teams. They will face each of their four rivals three times.

Last year, the Huskies played in a combination of the Sky-Em and the Capital conferences.

The new league will enable Sweet Home to play its rivals three times, Schmidtman said.

“It’ll be nice to see what kind of adjustments we can make” game to game, he said.

The experience comes not only from returning veterans but from some of the newcomers who played last year on the junior high/Boys & Girls Club team.

“I’m looking for some freshmen to contribute right away at the varsity level,” Schmidtman said. “We’ve got a few returning players.”

At the key goalie position, junior Michael Bolduc returns with varsity experience. Rob Helfrich and KC Hanscam, both seniors, also return with experience and will be key contributors. Senior Jason Long returns after a one-year break and will help them out.

Positions and who will make the varsity team were still up in the air at the beginning of the week, Schmidtman said. He plans to hold the juniors and seniors back on defense with the freshmen playing midfield and forward.

Keeping the experience in the back, “they’ll recognize where they need to be at all times,” Schmidtman said. “A lot of your offense is built from defense anyway.”

The Huskies will build their attack from the back, he said. “They’re not going to panic at the first sight of trouble.”

The Huskies won one game last year, Schmidtman said, though “we played some teams that were pretty good teams real close.”

The Huskies were competitive last year, losing many of their games by a single goal, he said. “We were in just about every game.”

He thinks the Huskies will surprise a lot of people, he said.

“I think we’re a lot better than most teams will give us credit for pre-season.”

Helping out, the program is getting bigger, Schmidtman said, and the junior high program is growing.

Of the four teams in their conference, the Huskies have seen Taft and exchanged wins from one year to the next. Schmidtman has not seen Philomath since he was in high school playing soccer at Woodburn. He has never seen Newport, and Central is usually a top-10 contender.

The roster includes seniors Alex Moser, Eric Munts, KC Hanscam, Rob Helfrich, Jason Long,Tye Dodge and Kevin Yeung; juniors Michael Bolduc, Aris Somatis and Jered Severns; sophomores Chris Ferris, Trevor Shipp, Seabass Mauer, Cameron Vasseu, C.J. Allyn and Blake Roberts; and freshmen Anthony Albright, Brock Crocker, Conner Cunha, James Myers, Mitchell Grove, Matthew Grove, Dakotah Keys, Kasey Keys and Andrew Winslow.