HEUVELTON – The 2012 soccer season was very good to Heuvelton Central.
The Bulldog Boys claimed the schools first Section 10 Class D title ever with a thrilling win over Harrisville. The Lady Bulldogs claimed the NAC West title and lost to eventual New York State Class D runner up Chateaugay in the sectional final.
The boys must replace seven senior starters from the 13-3-2 championship squad while girls team will be looking to build on its NAC West Division crown with eyes on a making another mid-November run.
The boys soccer team is going to see a restructured starting cast looking to replace eight seniors headed by NAC West Offensive MVP and Watertown All North MVP Aaron Cobb who scored 15 goals during the regular season.
Also graduated were: Jon Sloan, goalie Chris Power, sweeper and defensive leader Cody Holland, Jack Tennant, Mike and Matt Guardino, Dedrick Johnson and Eric Stewart.
Seven seniors played key roles in the Section 10 title and made history before losing to state champion Chazy, Heuvelton Coach Dave Steele said.
Returning from last years team are: Lucas Brown (senior midfield), Joe McDonnell (senior forward), Anthony Butterfield (junior defense), Will Tennant (Junior Midfielder), Aidan Scagel (Senior Midfield), Dylan Liscum (Senior Defense), Chris Lovely (junior forward), Zach Lashomb (junior goalie), Tanner Haggert (sophomore forward), Andrew Streeter (junior midfielder) and Casey Smith (junior defense).
Newcomers include: Cole Piercey (freshman forward), Ben Jacobs (sophomore defense), Josh Trathen (Sophomore defense), Mike Martin (sophomore defense), Carter Pierce (sophomore defense), Jordan Macauley (sophomore defense goalie), and Noah Steele (7th grade forward).
Ben Jacobs, Noah Steele and Joe McDonnell all competed for the FC Freeze Soccer program this summer. McDonnell also produced some big goals during last seasons playoff run.
This will be a rebuilding year with a young team, but the title has given our program a sense of excitement where they understand the level of commitment and work it takes to get to the level that we achieved last year, said Steele.
This team knows how important and fun it can be to still be playing in November. It is still in the back of the returners minds to be one of the last eight teams playing soccer in November,
Coach Gus Burns returned the bulk of last years 14-3-1 but most replace the leadership of starters in Ali Scalone and Abby Basford on defense and Ashlyn Piercey in the middle.
I think we have good leadership in Alexis Weidner, Logan Tallman and Maddie St. Pierre. We have a good group of young players that are new to the team this year. Paige McCormick has been playing goal for us and shows a lot of promise. Ali, Ashlyn and Abby are three tough players to replace and were hoping to fill the gaps with some of the new and returning players. We are still a work in progress. Our summer soccer was not as productive this year as in years past and has really made us work on some basic skill things that the summer season usually helps us get in shape for, said Burns.
Weidner was Section 10s leading regular season scorer with 25 goals and Hannah Thornhill produced seven goals.
Also returning are Alex Steele, Rachael Thornhill, Olivia and Maddie St. Pierre, Johanna Carmany, Shelby Williams, Renee Breault, Ashlyn Foster, and Kylie Piercey.
Eighth grader Alex Steele, a second year starter, has gotten stronger as a player this season and Taylor Dawley will be helping us a lot this year. And Rachael and Hanna Thornhill add a nice touch with Rachael playing in a number of different roles for us. says Burns.
Im also looking forward to seeing the development of some good young players in Eliza Jane Hamilton, Natalie Barr, Miranda Donnelly, Gabby Johnson, Karina Warren, Kristin Harper, and Erin Kennedy. Overall, I think we will be a pretty athletic team. I think we will be in the mix at the end just where in the mix depends on how quickly the girls can pick up where they left off last year. Starting right out of the gate against what should be pretty good Lisbon team is going to test us on how well we are prepared. Overall I would say we should be as strong as last year but maybe not right away.